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Trucking Interview Questions

30 interview questions and answers to help you prepare for an interview in the trucking industry.

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Question 1 of 30

Talk to me about your geographical knowledge, rating yourself from 1-10.

How to Answer

Company ABC needs to know that you are confident in your knowledge of the areas to which they provide service. Working in the trucking industry, it's essential that you have strong geographical knowledge. This knowledge does not mean that you have to know everything about the US, Canada, and Mexico! It does mean that you have excellent recall skills and the ability to learn quickly. Company ABC may offer geographic testing, so be sure to offer your participation if that's the case.

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30 Trucking Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1. Talk to me about your geographical knowledge, rating yourself from 1-10.

      How to Answer

      Company ABC needs to know that you are confident in your knowledge of the areas to which they provide service. Working in the trucking industry, it's essential that you have strong geographical knowledge. This knowledge does not mean that you have to know everything about the US, Canada, and Mexico! It does mean that you have excellent recall skills and the ability to learn quickly. Company ABC may offer geographic testing, so be sure to offer your participation if that's the case.

      1st Answer Example

      "I would rate my geographical knowledge a 7.5 out of 10. There is room for me to learn more. Thankfully, I have a photogenic memory and can recall locations and facts very quickly once I have briefly studied the content."

      2nd Answer Example

      "I consider myself advanced and a 9/10 when it comes to my knowledge of this region and our surrounding states. There are areas of the US, Canada, and Mexico that I am not familiar with; however, I am a quick study and will begin brushing up my skills right away."

  • 2. Name for me three of the transportation services offered at Company ABC.

      How to Answer

      The hiring authority at Company ABC wants to see that you have taken the time to get to know their business and exactly what they offer. Do your research on the company website and be prepared to talk about some of the services that stand out the most to you.

      1st Answer Example

      "I see that Company ABC offers a plethora of services ranging from intermodal and dedicated trucking to brokerage and cross-border freight services. My specialty is in cross-border services, which includes shipping to Mexico and Canada."

      2nd Answer Example

      "I appreciate the range of services offered at Company ABC including your dedicated fleet services which are customized to optimize your clients' shipping needs. The other service that stood out to me includes your brokerage services. It's great that your clients are assigned a single point of contact for their business needs. The third service that stood out to me the most is intermodal freight shipping. Your offering is broad from transcontinental to express services."

  • 3. How is our ever-changing economy impacting the trucking industry?

      How to Answer

      According to the American Trucking Association, we move 70% of goods by road. This statistic means that trucking is an incredibly important industry for the economy. This importance also means that our economic standing can significantly impact the health of the trucking industry. Show the interviewer that you have a finger on the pulse of what is happening in your industry.

      1st Answer Example

      "I notice the biggest difference in the trucking industry when we are in a tight economy. With a slow economy comes less demand for shipped goods considered luxuries such as cars and garments. Consumers spend less money, which translates to fewer goods shipped and fewer loads run."

      2nd Answer Example

      "From what I know, a slow economy means that people are consuming less under nearly every category. This slow-down of consumption means there is less to ship out. For this reason, shippers will try to control costs by filling trucks with more than usual and then sending them out less frequently. I have seen shippers double up on a load, to save on costs."

  • 4. We offer competitive wages and a great compensation plan. What is most important to you, when considering a job offer?

      How to Answer

      Every person interprets the value in a compensation package differently than the next. For this reason, its essential that Company ABC understands what a tempting job offer would look like before giving you one. Take some time to think about what is important to you when considering a job offer. Perhaps it's excellent health benefits, work-life balance, company culture, career growth, or continued education opportunities. Whatever your answer be sure to provide the interviewer with a clear idea of what you need to gain from your next employment opportunity.

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  • 5. Carriers and shippers face many regulatory changes. How do you remain up to date on capacity, compliance, and safety standards?

      How to Answer

      There are many rules and regulations to follow in the trucking industry. The interviewer at Company ABC wants to be sure that you are familiar with the reputable and valuable resources available to you. Show the interviewer that you remain up to date when it comes to safety and compliance in the trucking industry. Refer to coursework that you take, company newsletters to which you subscribe, articles that you enjoy reading, or even Google news alerts related to your job function.

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  • 6. Do you have experience collaborating with drivers, dispatchers, and other crew?

      How to Answer

      Cross-functional or cross-departmental skills are essential when you're working in an industry like trucking because there are many moving parts to every project. Clear communication is key to a successful day, and that begins with ensuring you are on the same page as your co-workers, regardless of their job title or function.

      If you have experience collaborating with other departments and job functions such as dispatch, loading and unloading crews, schedulers, or even human resources, discuss that experience.

      If you are new to the trucking industry, or your career, with limited cross-functional experience, you can discuss any volunteer work or experience from your post-secondary education.

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  • 7. In this role with Company ABC you will be responsible for the safe and efficient delivery of customer freight. How will you contribute to our reputation for safety and excellence?

      How to Answer

      In the trucking industry, nothing is more important than safety and pride in work. Before your interview, take some time to learn about the mission statement and values of Company ABC. Through their website and other internet searches, you will be able to get a sense of their values, as well as the type of workplace culture they are creating. Are their core values a match to your own? Talk to the interviewer about how your skills and characteristics will contribute to the goals of Company ABC.

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  • 8. How familiar are you with the US Department of Transportation and the part they play with Company ABC daily operations?

      How to Answer

      The US Department of Transportation (USDOT or just DOT) was established in 1966. DOT focus' on regulating all types of transportation, including trucking, rail transport, aviation, public transit, and more. Their primary mission is to enable the safe, reliable, and efficient movement of people and goods by all types of transportation.

      If hired by Company ABC you will need to be familiar with the US Department of Transportation and how to comply with their regulations, as they relate to your specific job title. Briefly describe what you know the DOT to be, and how they will impact your daily work operations.

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  • 9. Do you have experience working on an on-call basis? Are you able to meet our scheduling needs?

      How to Answer

      If you currently hold a job that requires you to work on-call, then this question should be simple to address. You can display your willingness by discussing what you already do in your current role.

      If you do not have experience being on-call, be sure that you fully understand what this entails, before you agree to meet the scheduling needs of Company ABC. You want to be sure that expectations are very clear from the start. Overall, the interviewer needs to see that you can comply with the schedule, meeting the needs of Company ABC and filling the expectations of this role.

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  • 10. Company ABC conducts background checks, drug, and alcohol testing. Are you able to meet these requirements?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer needs to know that you will be able to pass any background checks; including criminal, drugs, and sometimes even alcohol. Any business in the trucking industry has to be especially careful about safety, which includes avoiding any instances related to impaired driving. If you are applying for a driver role, you must have a clean criminal record, allowing you to cross borders without issue.

      Keep your answer straightforward. If you know that you will pass any background checks with flying colors, state that you will comply with anything they need. If you may have a discrepancy, you should disclose this right away.

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  • 11. Do you have experience in the movement of hazardous material, restricted, or time-sensitive shipments?

      How to Answer

      Company ABC offers an extensive menu of services to clients, including the transportation of hazardous materials, dangerous goods, and time-sensitive deliveries. These jobs could include the shipping of gasoline, chemicals, and flammable materials.

      Outline your experience when it comes to moving sensitive shipments. Show your level of comfort and expertise by discussing what you have transferred and how often. Be sure to highlight your record of safety!

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  • 12. Trucking and transport require the ability to react quickly and professionally. How do you keep your cool in the face of change?

      How to Answer

      No two days are the same in the trucking and transport industry! The interviewer needs to see that you have the insight and capability required to pivot on projects when required.

      Show the interviewer your ability to remain calm and collected in the face of last-minute changes. Perhaps you create a variety of potential scenarios and solutions ahead of time. Maybe you read a lot on troubleshooting, making you a confident problem-solver. Whichever way you approach changing situations, show the interviewer that you are flexible and adaptable.

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  • 13. Smooth communication is vital to the success of Company ABC. How do you ensure smooth workplace communication?

      How to Answer

      Company ABC needs to hire leaders who communicate smoothly every step of the way. The interviewer wants to see that you lead by example when it comes to communication efforts on the job, even when you are not in a formal leadership position. In the trucking industry, breakdown of communication can be incredibly costly when it comes to on-time deliverables, Company ABC reputation, and the safety of others. Discuss how you do your part to ensure smooth workplace communication.

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  • 14. The trucking and transport industry can be stressful and high-stakes. How do you deal under extreme stress?

      How to Answer

      The trucking industry can be high-stakes, especially when you have time-sensitive deliveries or shipments that contain dangerous goods or hazardous materials.

      Stressful scenarios happen every day at Company ABC and the hiring authority needs to know that you can keep your cool no matter the challenges you face. Think about a time when you dealt with an extremely stressful situation, and give this real-life example to the interviewer in the form of a brief story.

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  • 15. Company ABC seeks out employees who work hard, and show up for their team. What does having a strong work ethic mean to you?

      How to Answer

      Using similar wording to that of Company ABC, take the time to explain to the interviewer what it means to bring a strong work ethic to everything that you do. When you use specific buzzwords that Company ABC can relate to, you are showing the interviewer that you value the same ethics and that your work values align nicely. Try to avoid the typical 'I work hard and show up on time' answer and dig a bit deeper into what makes you determined and driven, accountable, and dependable.

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  • 16. How extensive is the fleet at Company ABC?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know how much research you have performed on Company ABC before attending your interview. You can find the information that you need from a simple online search, or through the company website. Discuss what you have learned from your research. Show the interviewer that you are engaged and interested in what Company ABC is accomplishing.

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  • 17. What is the FMCSA and its primary purpose?

      How to Answer

      The FMCSA is short for The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The FMCSA is an agency within the United States Department of Transportation. The primary purpose of the FMCSA is to regulate the trucking industry. This regulating includes reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses. Talk to the interviewer about what you know about the FMCSA and any experience you have with the administration.

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  • 18. Are you prepared for substantial amounts of travel?

      How to Answer

      Depending on the role you are applying for, there may be travel required in this position. Be honest in your answer, discussing any roadblocks you may encounter when it comes to traveling for work. If you are unable to travel on particular days, for instance, be specific about those restrictions.

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  • 19. Tell me about your post-secondary education and how it applies to the trucking industry. Are you interested in expanding your schooling, or gaining further certifications?

      How to Answer

      Company ABC wants to know if you have an interest in investing in your industry related knowledge. Depending on the position requirements, you may need to have a related post-secondary degree. If this is the case, take a couple of minutes to bring your education to life. Talk about the coursework that you took, and how it will benefit you in this role. Of course, we never stop learning! It's also vital that you show the interviewer your interest in continuing your education as your career progresses.

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  • 20. Talk to me about a serious conflict on your team. How did you help to resolve the conflict?

      How to Answer

      Conflict can be inevitable in the trucking industry as you face situations that change all the time, with a wide range of personalities and high-stakes projects. Talk to the interviewer about a time when you were successful working with people that worked differently from you. Walk the hiring authority through the situation, what you did, and what the resolution was. Be sure to highlight how you skillfully handled these conflict issues.

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  • 21. What were you doing during the gaps in employment that I see on your resume?

      How to Answer

      If you have gaps in your resume, be prepared to have a clear answer on what you were doing during those times. There is no need to go into extreme detail on what was keeping you busy. The main point of this question is for the interviewer to see if you are the go-getter type who sticks with their job loyally rather than someone who quits and moves on the moment things become hard.

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  • 22. When have you discovered a problem at work, and went above and beyond to repair the issue?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to see that you are the type of person to take a situation and repair it, rather than leaving it for the next person. Show Company ABC that you can add genuine value to their company by going above and beyond the minimum expectations. Your example could include a time you worked long hours and made sacrifices to overcome a challenging problem. Discuss the positive impact and the significance of your solution.

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  • 23. Tell me about your least favorite personal trait, and what are you doing to improve yourself.

      How to Answer

      This question is another way of asking about your greatest weakness. If you had to pick one trait that you would tweak or change, what would it be? Mention one specific character trait and then focus on what you are doing to improve in this area. Avoid mentioning a habit so extreme that it would disqualify you for the position. Some common personality traits that people often work on improving include:

      - Being a 'know-it-all.'
      - Rudeness or arrogance
      - Dominating conversations
      - Moodiness or being temperamental

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  • 24. What timeline do you feel is appropriate when responding to customers and other stakeholders?

      How to Answer

      Company ABC is all about delivering exceptional service. The interviewer would like to know what you interpret as a fast turnaround when it comes to responding to your customers. You should take note of how quickly your messages are returned, by this organization, if you are a past customer. You can even refer to your experience as a candidate!

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  • 25. What are your favorite, and least favorite, tasks in your current job?

      How to Answer

      You will want to deliver your answer positively, even when discussing what your least favorite tasks are in your current job. It's important to remember that the way you respond sets a vibe for your interview.

      When it comes to discussing your least favorite aspect of your job, you want to avoid complaining. Do so by describing it as a challenge that you are learning to face head-on. Take this question as an opportunity to shine when it comes to your ability to overcome challenges and dislikes. When discussing favorite aspects of your job, focus on elements that you will be doing in this new role with Company ABC.

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  • 26. Company ABC seeks out the most honest employees. Have you ever kept the remainder of an expense allotted to you?

      How to Answer

      Honesty is a critical characteristic that Company ABC will look for in an employee, no matter their job function. The interviewer would like to know if you have ever falsified an expense report or kept funds not meant for you. Assure the interviewer that you will always be honest with your expense reports and any other aspect of your job that requires trust.

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  • 27. Tell me why you are leaving your current job.

      How to Answer

      This question is straightforward, but it tends to trip up a lot of job seekers. Have a rehearsed and honest statement prepared for every position on your resume. 'The role was no longer a fit' is an answer that will not go over well with most interviewers. Neither is a vague reply like, 'There was no room to grow.' Give a specific reason without being negative or speaking poorly of the company, your management, or co-workers.

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  • 28. How would you handle a client who is exceptionally rude to you?

      How to Answer

      Company ABC prides themselves on excellent service and a positive approach. When you work in customer service, you will often come across rude individuals, so you must know how to handle these instances with poise and professionalism. Give an example of a time that you had to deal with a challenging customer. Be sure to include information on what you did to ensure a positive outcome!

      Some ways that you can efficiently handle a rude customer:

      - Remain kind, polite, and pleasant
      - Actively listen to their grievances
      - Apologize for the situation
      - Maintain a neutral tone of voice
      - Avoid taking anything they say, personally

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  • 29. How would you deal with a supervisor who is a poor communicator?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know how you handle poor communication between yourself and a superior. Since you cannot often change someone's communication style, discuss what you do to adapt. Talk about a specific time when you improved communication between yourself and a supervisor. Outline your approach and the resolution.

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  • 30. Tell me about yourself.

      How to Answer

      This question is a simple one that is very challenging to answer because it's not specific and open-ended. It can be challenging to know where to begin, and end! Many job seekers get tripped up on this question and give too much personal information, or go on a tangent for....forever.

      Keep your reply light, and relevant to your work and this job. Share how you became interested in the trucking industry, for instance, and what you enjoy about it. This question offers an excellent opportunity to describe yourself by discussing the strengths and qualities that you bring.

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