I want to start by taking a moment to wish all of my readers the very best that this holiday season has to offer.

This month I will write an article about the CVOR. And about how a CVOR can be ruined. And as I started to think about it I realized that I was in some trouble. Do I address myself to trucking companies and say, “Don’t Let Truck Drivers Ruin Your CVOR or, do I address the article to drivers and say: “Don’t Work for a Company with a Terrible CVOR!”

I am of two minds. I think that both statements are true and both expressions are valid, to a point. I think companies know that their hiring process is often flawed. They are so anxious to get the driver into a seat that they fail to adequately screen and onboard the drivers.

Drivers are in too much of a hurry. Typically they are leaving one company for a valid reason and going to the next but also fail to perform simple but necessary research into the company to see if they will be a good fit!

Okay, let’s talk about the companies first. And drivers, don’t skip over this part because it will give you some suggestions and ideas about what trucking companies who do things correctly do to bring in quality drivers. Let’s be honest; you as a driver want to work for a good company that treats you fairly, right? After all, isn’t that the reason that you are leaving your current place?

Now back to what the companies should be doing. They should be investigating each new applicant by digging deep into their Motor Vehicle Record (MVR)’s (abstracts) including (if the driver is from Ontario or Alberta) the Commercial Drivers Abstract. Let us not forget about the criminal record search as that is necessary as well. Since I’m a safety consultant, I often work with companies that fail to hire well. And usually, they don’t do the references or history checks adequately. Why? I suspect because it takes both time and money.

Drivers, I know you are anxious to make a change but don’t hop to a company that fails to take their time while exploring your background correctly. Oh, I know you think that your experience is good and that it is all the other guys that have things to hide so why shouldn’t you quickly change carriers. The quick answer to that is that the companies that don’t hire correctly usually have a terrible CVOR.

Working for a company with a lousy CVOR affects you how? More inspections! Yes, when you roll over that scale and the officer inputs your license plate into the system, the officer will immediately see your companies CVOR. They immediately know what kind of a company you are driving for and will even know what the likely problems areas are and if they should check for Hours of Service violations or vehicle defects.

Drivers, if the company that you are applying to for a job is not taking their time and doing a proper investigation about your past, it means that they probably didn’t do it with any of the other drivers in your fleet. This should make you wonder what condition their CVOR is in. So for each and every driver, the company CVOR is hugely important. This is because on any given day, being human, you can make a mistake and that mistake could cost you hundreds of dollars. So you need to work for a company that has a great CVOR which will result in your getting inspected less frequently.

So that is the company CVOR. You drivers need to keep your CVOR in good shape too. After all, it is your best advertisement for your abilities. If you are a quality driver then your CVOR will reflect this. What does a good truck driver CVOR look like? It should have several clean inspections on your record. These clean checks show that you have both experience and know how to perform a vehicle inspection.

If you genuinely want to work for one of the good companies, you should first check their CVOR, their hiring process and on-boarding actions.

How do you check their hiring process? Well, I guess you simply go through the process and if it seems complete and thorough, it is likely correct. What are the on-boarding actions? How does the company welcome you to the group? The more exacting companies often have one to five days of indoctrination or training. Smaller companies should have something similar and at least several hours of welcoming and orientation.

The most often asked question is in regards to the company CVOR. “How do I check a company’s CVOR?” Great question! One way would be to purchase for $5 a Level 1 public CVOR. Yes, it does cost five dollars and it doesn’t tell you a heck of a lot, but it does give you the company rating. The good companies have a rating of “Satisfactory or Satisfactory Un-Audited.” Companies that are good also have a rating of “Conditional.” If the company that you are applying to has a condition rating, I encourage you to ask questions. One of the most important items on this CVOR Level 1 Report is the “Overall Threshold.” This number should be below 35% and the lower, the better. If the number goes over 50% then the company may get a Facility Audit. You don’t want to be part of that.

So there you have it, an article about CVOR and how it affects everyone. If you have questions, please reach out. I love to hear your comments and questions.

Here is the link to purchase a Level 1 CVOR.

Merry Christmas!

Chris Harris
Top Dawg, Safety Dawg Inc.
@safety_dawg (twitter)

About Chris Harris, Safety Dawg

Chris has been involved in trucking most of his adult life. He drove truck for and worked in various office/management positions for a major truck company. His last position of 5 years in the safety department where he was responsible for the recruiting of Owner Operators and their compliance. He joined a trucking insurance company in 2001 and has been in the insurance side of things until making Safety Dawg a full-time endeavour.