Courier drivers provide a vital service in the business community by delivering parcels on deadline schedules. A number of businesses regularly use courier drivers to make deliveries, including financial institutions, medical facilities, legal institutions and commercial ventures. Many courier drivers work as independent contractors, meaning they are in business for themselves and make deliveries on behalf of a number of courier companies. Courier and delivery companies also sometimes hire staff drivers.
Qualifications to Be a Courier Driver
A courier driver must have a valid driver's license. Some companies may require a commercial driver's license if the courier is required to drive vehicles larger than a standard van or delivery truck. A courier driver must have a clean driving record. Some courier companies require background checks and drug and alcohol screenings before hiring. Usually, a high school diploma is sufficient education for a courier driver position.
Required Skills and Attributes
Courier companies are increasingly using technology to track their deliveries. Courier drivers must be able to use computer scanning technology (training is usually provided). Courier drivers must also be capable of lifting and carrying up to 34 Kilogram in the course of their deliveries. Accuracy and attention to detail are important attributes of a courier driver. A clean and neat personal appearance is also important.
Duties of a Courier Driver
A courier driver is responsible for driving a delivery vehicle to pick up and deliver a variety of items to various locations. Drivers are responsible for loading and unloading deliveries using hand trucks and other mechanical delivery assistance devices, using technology to map their routes and track their deliveries, making pickups and deliveries on time, completing required paperwork, all while providing excellent customer service during the process,
Specialised Training Requirements
Courier drivers sometimes handle pharmaceuticals, blood products and even organs for transplant. Courier drivers who will be transporting such medical or hazardous materials must be appropriately trained in safety and security requirements. Training is often provided by the courier company employing the driver, but drivers can also get training through various training programs to help them comply with safety and security requirements.
Working as an Independent Contractor
Independent contractor courier drivers must follow the rules set forth by the Internal Revenue Service to qualify as an independent contractor. While the job description is the same, whether a staff driver or an independent contractor, an independent contractor must supply his own insurance and in many cases, his own vehicle to make deliveries.