Have you ever wondered what a courier does? A job that is seemingly so simple can actually be a little hard to explain. Couriers have been around for hundreds of years, but they’re a bit different today than how they were in the past. Back then, couriers were foot messengers, runners or horseback riders. It would take some time to get the message to where it needed to be, but even then the message would make it. Couriers of the past would only deliver one or two things at a time.Today, couriers work to deliver a variety of goods.
In an age where companies are promising customers the perk of quicker shipping options, couriers have become increasingly popular. However, many people still don’t know what exactly a courier does.
What is a Courier Driver?
A courier is someone responsible for delivering goods to consumers or businesses. Couriers are different from standard delivery men because they work individually. They’re often independent workers that have a contract with a company to deliver.
One of the things that make them stand out is that the courier provides their transportation. Some companies also allow their couriers to wear anything, so it can be difficult for consumers when they see someone walking up to their home with a package.
As larger companies are expanding to offer new things, like same-day shipping, they have to bring in new people to help them fulfill their services. Many postal services have strict working hours, but couriers can work at any time.
At Orbit Same Day, we pride ourselves in hiring the best and most reliable drivers out there. Every day, our drivers cover thousands of miles and visit hundreds of locations, each stop being thoughtfully planned and executed. Utilizing our fleet of scheduled drivers gives you access to a reliable pool of drivers that are supported by a centralized dispatch team.
What Does a Courier Do?
The main part of a courier’s job is to deliver packages, but there are several aspects of their job. If being courier only meant delivering packages, anyone could do it. But being a courier takes a special breed of person and here at Orbit Same Day, we are glad we have scooped up the right candidates.
In this blog, we want to be as transparent as we possibly can. We are going to go over the process of a typical day in the life of a courier so you can see that what they do entails a lot more than just delivering packages.
Report to the Loading Facility
The first thing a courier will do when they start their shift is to report to the loading facility. At the facility, they’ll receive all of the packages that they’ll be delivering during the day. Every courier service has a different way of verifying couriers, usually with the likes of QR codes and checking license plates. Most loading facilities will make up carts that consist of packages which will be transported together. This allows the facility to keep organized and prevent the courier from having to take long detours from their route. After the courier is assigned their cart, they’ll start loading their vehicle with packages. Most couriers drive larger vehicles so that they can store more things, and companies often require couriers to have SUVs.
Our couriers at Orbit Same Day have fleet vehicles provided to them. Whether a courier uses the same vehicle every day or they choose an available fleet vehicle when they arrive at work, they are required to inspect their truck or van before loading any packages.Throughout the day, a courier is responsible for their vehicle. They note the condition of their ride at the start of the day. While they might not have to handle any maintenance, a courier needs to be familiar with how their fleet vehicle performs. This helps keep your packages on time while keeping drivers and citizens safe while on the road.
Before they can hit the road, a courier has to review paperwork and check packages for their route of the day. Couriers are responsible for the safety of clients’ packages from pickup to arrival. A courier loads their van with any overnight deliveries, then begins their day on the road.
When a courier has everything packed and is ready to go, they’ll start the main part of their courier duties: delivery. Couriers don’t run the same route during each trip, so they use GPS to see where they have to go.
Anytime a courier arrives at a destination, they’ll attempt to hand-deliver the package to the recipient. If that’s not possible, they’ll leave it on the porch or in a secure area of the property, such as with a receptionist.
The workload varies because one day a courier could have 40 packages and 3 on another. To confirm that they’ve delivered the package, they’ll either use a scanner or their cell phone. After the courier has delivered all of the packages, they can either go back to the loading facility to do another load or they can go home. That’s why many people become couriers because of the flexibility.
How to be a Courier
Becoming a courier isn’t a difficult process because it doesn’t require higher education. The demand for couriers is increasing as companies get larger, so you wouldn’t have too hard of a time getting a courier job. Depending on the company that you’re applying for, you’ll need to look into their job requirements. If they require you to drive a specific kind of vehicle, you could consider leasing out one to secure you a job.
However, most companies just want you to show up with a decent vehicle that can fit a lot of packages. Your car will need to be in good shape and you’ll have to look good while delivering.
Most courier jobs can be applied for directly from the website of the company that you’re interested in. However, you can also apply to job sites, like Indeed. Before applying, ensure that you prepare a resume to increase the likelihood that you get hired.
Qualities of a Courier
They Have to Drive (Really) Well. You trust couriers to deliver your package in the same condition as when they picked it up from you. Couriers must have a clean driving record and certification to drive the company’s fleet vehicles. Safe driving is critical! Causing accidents or reckless driving can cost time and money. Couriers also deal with challenging parking situations throughout the day. People don’t enjoy a courier van blocking access to walkways or parking spots. Courier drivers must understand the best places to park with a minimal interruption when dropping off or picking up a package.
They Must Stay in Touch. Being a courier doesn’t mean free access to a van to drive around town for the day. Couriers must stay in touch with “home base” throughout the day. While driving a courier vehicle can be a solitary job, couriers are never truly “alone” during the day. Many couriers enjoy being away from an office with the freedom to see the city every day, but they are also on a schedule. Couriers must check-in frequently and understand the protocol for reporting their location or any delays in delivery. Couriers are accountable to the clients for the safe delivery of a package. They’re also responsible to supervisors to stay on task and in close communication throughout the day. By staying available on the two-way radio, couriers can quickly respond to a new pickup that comes in while they’re on their route.
Be Physically Fit. Couriers must be physically fit enough to handle daily lifting and squatting to get packages on and off of the truck. You might think couriers spend a sedentary life riding in a van all day. However, if you’re wondering about how to become a courier, start with your level of fitness. From jumping in and out of the truck throughout the day to lifting and carrying packages of varying weights, the daily grind of being a courier requires the stamina to keep up a steady pace.
Be Organized and Thorough. Some package deliveries require collecting payment or signatures. Couriers must be able to track a package from pick-up, through riding in the vehicle, to delivery at the final destination. Every package delivery is different, depending on the client’s needs. When collecting payments and signatures, couriers have to make sure a transaction succeeds for the correct package at the right location. Being a courier is more than moving packages around town. The job requires attention to detail, too.
Your First Day
When you get hired, your first day on the job might be a bit different than that of a regular shift. Some companies will provide rookie couriers with someone to train them, but there’s a chance you could be left by yourself. If you ever run into problems while you’re alone, your company’s app will usually have a variety of answers for you. The worst thing that can happen is you’ll have to call someone to figure out what you do. It’s important to remember that everyone starts from nothing, so don’t be too nervous when you’re delivering. Keep a calm demeanor, greet recipients with a smile, and pay attention to the road.
Get Involved Today
With this article, you no longer need to ask, “What does a courier do?” As soon as a courier visits the loading facility, they’ll be off with your package. Here at Orbit Same Day, we ensure our couriers drive safe while getting your goods delivered as quickly as possible. Go ahead and get a quote today to learn how much you could save by using our services.