Harry here. We’ve covered Postmates and DoorDash extensively over the past few months, but there are actually a lot of other ‘non on-demand’ delivery companies out there. These opportunities are a bit tougher to find but recently, RSG contributor Scott Van Maldegiam started working for a company called Dynamex in Chicago that does package delivery for Amazon and loved it. Today he shares how he stumbled across this opportunity and what his experience has been like so far.
Are you tired of decreasing fares from rideshare companies? Are you a full time driver looking to make more consistent money? Hooking up with a delivery service company may be the way to go.
While you may have heard that Amazon is hiring their own fleet of on-demand drivers, you may not know there are other delivery companies (not named FedEx, USPS or UPS) now providing next-day and same-day delivery service for Amazon. These companies are contracting drivers (not-employees) like you and me to deliver Amazon packages.
How I Got Started With Dynamex
A few months ago, a fellow Uber and Lyft driver had posted on a Facebook group that a delivery company in the Chicago area was looking for drivers to deliver packages for Amazon. Amazon officially launched their same-day service here in Chicago in October, but started testing different companies in September.
I was up for trying a new way to make money while driving my car, so I decided to give it a go. Before we were allowed to start delivering packages, we were required to attend a training class to learn the exact process we needed to follow. In general, it isn’t that much different than driving for Uber or Lyft. There is an app to use on your phone. Your route is on the phone, which tells you where your packages are going. This app links to your navigation app in your phone. The driver needs to scan the packages they are going to deliver before loading the packages into their car and then also scan the packages as they are being delivered. It is a very simple process to follow. Once I completed this training session, I was ready to start delivering.
This company started delivering packages for Amazon back in September. These packages were same-day deliveries, so the drivers were asked to arrive at 3pm for the sort and then to have all our packages delivered by 9pm each day. I was there on the first day along with about 25 other drivers. If I remember correctly, we had about 500 packages on the first day. All the drivers were new, so the first few days were a bit chaotic, but the best thing was that the delivery company employees and the drivers worked as a team toward a common goal. We all worked together and everyday things got a little bit better. As Amazon increased the package count, it made things a bit more challenging, but the team continued to grow and improve.
Getting Good At Delivery
Over the next few months, I was assigned various routes and continued to receive more and more packages on whatever route I was given. After a few months, this company expanded to delivering Amazon next-day packages. These packages are delivered starting in the morning until 9pm, although most routes are usually done by mid-afternoon. On most days, I was able to deliver a next-day route and get back in time to deliver a same-day route. On a good day, I was delivering around 100 packages a day.
I really enjoyed delivering packages, even more so than driving for Uber or Lyft. Here is why:
- Packages don’t talk back – I didn’t have to worry about dealing with difficult riders.
- Teamwork – I enjoyed working with others during the sorting of packages.
- Recognition/Appreciation – The company understands that they only succeed if their drivers succeed so they show their appreciation for a job well done.
- Feel better – Delivering packages is a much more active job than driving for Uber or Lyft. I found myself losing weight as I hustled to get packages out of the car and to the customer’s door quickly.
There are a limited number of drawbacks:
- Nobody to talk to – I enjoy talking to riders, and since most riders are nice, I miss talking to riders.
- No surge pricing – There isn’t the excitement of the possibility of getting that one big paying ride.
- Parking – Parking the car while making a delivery can be a challenge depending on the delivery area.
Overall, I really enjoyed delivering packages because I felt like I was part of something where all the people cared about one another. That’s not something you always get with rideshare or even food delivery companies. It’s also a pretty simple job, especially for rideshare drivers who are used to following GPS instructions and finding a specific address or pin point. While we take this skill for granted, this is one of the most important skills in delivery, especially when delivering at night, where it is difficult to find addresses.
Related Article: 5 Reasons Why Delivery Trumps Rideshare
If you are looking for a more predictable income stream, and what I described sounds interesting, I suggest giving it a try. I ended up finding out about Dynamex somewhat serendipitously but it’s all about keeping your ear to the ground. If you’re actively searching for opportunities like this and willing to jump on them, you can end up working for a great company.
I’d advise looking on Craigslist, searching on Google and most importantly, networking with other drivers in your area. Find drivers in your city that have the same appetite for opportunity and see what you all can find.
As many rideshare drivers are between jobs, the other part of this story is pretty interesting. After working as a driver for 2 1/2 months, I applied for a full-time position in the back office and got it! I now work full-time for this delivery company and am enjoying my new job thoroughly. While I didn’t start driving for this company in order to find a full time job, that’s the way it worked out.
Drivers, have you ever thought about seeking employment outside of the Uber/Lyft/Postmates/DoorDash circle or does it seem like it wouldn’t be worth it?
-Scott @ RSG