Yard Jockey Job Description – Salary & Duties

Yard Jockey Job Description

Yard jockey is the operator, working in diesel-powered tractor or gasoline, bringing the trailers to the docks for unloading. They back the trailer for loading docks, performing safety checks for a secure trailer. Also, opening bay doors, assisting the dock working during the loading/unloading of a trailer. They are responsible for identifying the efficient equipment to support operations, taken place at the warehouse. They help with daily tasks and the manufacturing process. In the United States, they earn an average salary of $36,233 per year. We will discuss Yard Jockey Job Description here.

They maintain the equipment in the yard, which also includes repairing the machines. Also, helping in floor production as and when needed, also performing other duties assigned. Yard jockeys are responsible for the maintenance of the equipment. They ensure that the containers are secure and sealed. They shall also follow safety standards and policies set by the company that includes regulation from the transportation department.

Yard Jockey Job Description

Role of a Yard Jockey

The role of yard jockey includes the following:

  • Maintenance of all the yard equipment such as jockey trucks, trailers, etc. They shall also ensure that the inspection is done, including repair of the equipment, checking gas in the vehicle, oil inspection, and general checkup of the equipment.
  • Receiving the doors at the dock as and when required, shipping the jockey containers.
  • Working on floor production when required.
  • Maintaining proper paperwork and performing daily tasks such as yard inventory of containers and trailers.
  • Securing the containers/trailers, checking for the seal on the containers.
  • Following safety policies and company standards as per the regulation of the department.
  • Performing other’s assigned tasks.
  • Ensuring that all the equipment from the yard is maintained well and shall meet the regulations.
  • Making sure that the containers are jockeyed for shipping and sometimes to the storage as and when needed.
  • Shifting the products to the outlet store.
  • Providing additional support on the production floor when required.
  • Completion of yard inventory of containers, and thereby completing paperwork. 
  • Completion of various other tasks assigned.

Responsibilities – Yard Jockey

Their major responsibility includes identifying efficient equipment that supports warehouse distribution and the daily operation of the center. They especially work in the process of manufacturing and task delivery. They negotiate for minimal cost with the suppliers of equipment and transportations but providing quality performance. Also, they assist in moving the equipment, unloading, and loading the merchandise products. They schedule the maintenance for machinery and vehicles regularly. They must have excellent time management skills and perform multitasking with ease and within the provided amount of time under minimum supervision. Here are the tasks performed by the yard jockey:

  • Using RF gun for scanning the merchandise product.
  • Monitoring the crane operators, thereby removing IBC from freights.
  • Flipping the containers, processing emergency loads.
  • Training the new hires, CDL holders for road operations, explaining company policy and standard procedures.
  • Handling the pickup and delivery of freights.
  • Setting up promotional materials like POS, service stations, jockey boxes, etc.
  • Moving the containers from the dock.
  • Managing transportation from the contract for the distribution center.
  • Possessing excellent communication skills to interact with customers, clients, and debtors.
  • Entering the location information into the warehouse system.
  • Mentoring and training spotters and new yard drivers for the company policies.
  • Conducting weekly audits for the account of product loss which is supposed to be minimal.
  • Checking the vehicle for safety and the equipment are in good working conditions.
  • Utilizing the barcode scanner for accurate loadings from shipment.
  • Delivering and pickup postal loads to and from warehouses and post offices.
  • Follow up on safety procedures while transporting delicate goods.
  • Operating delivery vans as per the safety policy of the company.

Salaries and Wages – Yard Jockey

The job of yard jockey is projected to have career growth at about 5% from the present to 2028, as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The predicted number of workers for the position of yard jockey by the year 2028 is about 99,700. Careers don’t come in a single size that fits all. Once becoming a yard jockey, one may be curious about the next stage for career growth. The other relative jobs include driver operator, CDL driver, and professional driver.

The annual salary for a yard jockey on an average basis is about $37,936.On an hourly basis, they get to be paid about $18.24.But based on their experience, they earn a minimum of $31,000-$46,000 on average for a year. The top yard jockeys earn more than $10,000 than the lower-earning individual.

The salary of a yard jockey varies as per the industry. The highest-earning yard jockey is found in transportation, retail, and manufacturing companies. In the transportation industry, they earn an average of $46,538 per year. In the field of manufacturing, they make up to $42,313 annually. Retail companies earn about $38,694 annually.

Required Skills and Personality Traits – Yard Jockey

As per the survey, about 26% of yard jockeys are proficient in Tractor trail, straight truck, CDL, yard truck, dock doors, and other skills. They should also be proficient with listening skills, coordination of hand-eye, and customer handling skills. The required skills for the yard jockey are mentioned in detail below:

  1. CDL
    • They are high on demand
    • If operated backhoe for 4years and drove tractors in yards, CDL shall not be required.
    • Trained in 30 new CDL Class A drivers.
    • Maintained a perfect record of driving and Class A CDL.
    • Training new hires and CDL holders for road operations.
    • Completion of 172 hours of course to get Class A CDL permit.
    • Maintaining relationships with customers and emerging as a team player, well-organized and time-management.

  2. Tractor-trailer
    • Switching the tractors and trailers to and back to the docks and delivering the product via tractor-trailer.
    • To travel distance for transporting trailers of the tractor to various parts of the city to distribute the product.
    • Operation of forklift for transporting the loaded pallets.
    • Moving the tractor-trailer from the building.
    • Maintenance of truck, i.e., checking tire, fuel, and oil for the machine operation.
    • Handling truck equipment in the yard.

  3. Straight Truck
    • Moving straight trucks, tankers, dry vans, and refrigerators.
    • Removing tracks from the door of the dock when loading is done.
    • Sanitizing and washing the trucks and trailers.
    • Preparing Class B trucks and Class A trucks.
    • Operating and parking trucks as per requirement.
    • Operating 18 wheelers for freight transportation when needed.
    • Servicing the truck with fuel, oil, and other required fluids for the maintenance of the truck.

  4. Yard Truck
    • Inspection of yard truck, moving the container from the yard to the doors for loading.
    • Operating yard trucks for moving the trailers from one point to another for loading/unloading of goods.
    • Specialized training includes operating forklifts, pallet jacks that are motorized.
    • Moving the trailers around the yard.
    • Driving the yard truck to the assigned slot/warehouse.

  5. Customer Service
    • Assisting the consumers and providing them guidance courteously.
    • Excellent customer service.
    • Safety should be the priority.
    • Handling complaints from customers.
    • Being friendly to the customers, maintaining a professional manner.
    • Performing tasks that are customer-related such as handling accounts and calls.

Educational Background – Yard Jockey

To become a yard jockey, the minimum education requirement is a high school diploma. Apart from the high school diploma, the individual might need certification in CDL (Commercial Drivers License) to get the role. As per the statistics, most of the yard jockey is into a business, whereas other specifications include general education, automotive technology, and other majors.

Commercial Driver License

The FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) is the agency of the transportation department in the U.S. responsible for providing certification for Commercial Drivers License (CDL). The interested individual is required to obtain CDL for interstate and intrastate or any other foreign commerce. The State has developed its test to meet up the standards set by the federal. To get CDL, one may have to get a learner’s permit. The learner’s permit is issued only when the individual clears the skill test and knowledge exam. A skill test is done by taking the test in the vehicle you have planned to operate on.

OSHA Certificate

This program is conducted for 40 hours, which covers general industry and construction standards. It covers health issues that are related to work, physical hazards related to OSHA standards. The employees must self implement safety and health procedures as per standards.

Summary – Yard Jockey

As you grow in your career, you may have to take up much responsibility and take up a leadership role. With the help of a career map, one may decide their career goals through progression. They could start as route drivers and progress to become drivers and become warehouse managers.

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Yard Jockey Job Description – Salary & Duties

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