ABF Freight System, Inc., has been in operation since 1923, according to the company’s website. Each year, ABF moves about $16 billion in freight and handles 20,000 shipments per day. ABF serves all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
ABF specializes in LTL shipping, and prides itself on low loss and damage claims, and billing accuracy. The company employs 12,500 people, including 7,000 drivers. At the end of 2008, ABF had a fleet of 3660 tractors and 16,100 trailers, 289 customer service centers and 10 distribution facilities in North America.
All ABF drivers are Teamsters, so if you choose to work with ABF, you will also be becoming a union member, which has its pros and cons. On the upside, ABF pays relatively well. On the downside, seniority is critical in union shops. As a new hire, you’ll have the least seniority and will be most likely to get laid off if times get slow.
ABF hires city drivers who are at least 21, and who are able to get a CDL. This is a local driving job that sometimes involves dock work.
ABF also has OTR routes. The requirements for these jobs are minimum age of 25, and two years of tractor/trailer experience.
ABF hires dock workers who will become Teamsters and get paid on the union pay scale. Not all dock work is full-time, some is just casual and as-needed, but the company does have a CDL training program. This program is only available to people within the company, so if you have your heart set on driving but can’t afford CDL school, this may be one way to get your foot in the door. However, many dock worker positions are part-time, so you might need to find a day job to go along with your dock work.