Truck Driving Jobs: What Skills & Qualifications Are Required?

What skills are needed to become a truck driver?


Truck drivers need to maintain detailed records for all of their loads. Organized truck drivers keep track of fuel expenses, trailer numbers, and addresses. They also consistently and accurately fill out their logbooks. The skill of organization is critical for doing the job well, and also makes the job substantially easier. 


Truck drivers need strong communication skills to keep stakeholders informed of travel statuses and amicably resolve any issues that may arise. Communication skills make the job easier for the truck driver and ensure customer satisfaction. 


Truck drivers need a significant amount of self-motivation. While the task may seem simple and straightforward, driving for long hours every single day requires a great amount of initiative and commitment. There are many amazing truck drivers who have mastered the skill of motivation and find joy in driving every day. 


A truck driver needs to be reliable and responsible. Every truck driver will encounter challenging situations that can make it difficult to arrive at a destination on time. Reliable truck drivers will communicate appropriately and make responsible decisions. Reliable truck drivers always use caution and prioritize the safety of other drivers on the road. 

Navigational Skills

Although technologies are available to direct trucking routes, truckers benefit from strong navigational skills. The best truck drivers can determine the fastest routes and know when to avoid roads due to disasters or construction. 

Safe Driving Skills

It is critical that truck drivers have safe and proper driving skills. This includes knowing how to adhere to speed limits, checking mirrors, navigating difficult road conditions, and watching out for natural disasters. A great truck driver knows how to watch out for hazards on the road and can skillfully change lanes as needed. 

Mechanical Knowledge

Every truck driver needs to be able to assess their equipment for safety and functionality. Truck drivers need to have mechanical knowledge and skills to know whether or not the truck is safe to drive and be able to make minor repairs if an emergency arises. 

What level of education is required to apply for a truck driving job?

To apply for a truck driving job, individuals do not need to invest in a substantial amount of education. Most logistics companies require truck drivers to have a high school diploma or GED. Anyone who is considering truck driving as a career must have a clean driving record to apply. Depending on the specific truck driving job, there may be licensing requirements and courses to take to gain specialized certifications. 

What is a typical truck driving job salary?

While there are many different types of trucking jobs, let’s focus on over-the-road (OTR) and drayage truck driving jobs salaries because these are two of the most common trucker jobs. 

OTR Trucking Salary

OTR truck drivers make long hauls and are often on the road for weeks at a time. OTR truck drivers get to explore parts of the country they otherwise might not be able to see. This job is great for people who enjoy this unique lifestyle. According to ZipRecruiter, the average national OTR trucking salary is $63,888 per year. The highest earners make around $94,500 annually. Drivers who specialize with additional certifications can earn more money. 

Drayage Salary

Drayage truck drivers are also referred to as intermodal truck drivers. These logistics professionals make short hauls that are an essential part of the larger supply chain. An intermodal truck driver typically works the full time schedule of 45-50 hours per week. According to ZipRecruiter, most intermodal truck drivers earn salaries around $70,000. The highest earners can make around $90,000 per year. The pay varies depending on the level of experience the driver has, the performance of the driver, and the scope of the driver’s field. Regional drivers typically earn higher salaries than local drivers. 

Apply for a QFS Transportation Truck Driving Job Today!

QFS Transportation is one of the best intermodal trucking companies offering intermodal trucking services throughout the United States. Our clients benefit from our global intermodal trucking services, and we are looking to add qualified drivers to our distinguished team. Our corporate headquarters is based in Indiana, but most of our truck drivers operate in other areas throughout the country. QFS Transportation is looking for drivers in all cities. If you are interested in hauling for QFS, fill out one of the applications. As one of the largest and fastest-growing companies with over 60 terminals across the country, our dedicated team gives our Owner Operators everything they need to succeed. To take the next step with your driving career, sign up to start driving today!