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LogisticsNewsTrucking

TQL delays start date of nearly 200 new hires, sources say

Some TQL new hires say they received three business days’ notice not to report for work today; other logistics, technology and trucking companies have been forced to lay off workers amid the pandemic.

Just three business days before a new round of entry-level sales representatives were scheduled to start work on April 20 at Cincinnati-based Total Quality Logistics, some received telephone calls from recruiters notifying them that their start date had been pushed back until sometime in May.

This isn’t good news for around 200 of approximately 400 new hires that were scheduled to start today at some of TQL’s 57 offices nationwide, a source told FreightWaves.

The economic downturn and COVID-19 were cited as the reasons for postponing the start date for nearly half of TQL’s new hires. 

Tom Millikin, corporate communications manager of TQL, did not respond to FreightWaves’ request for comment regarding the last-minute news of the delayed start date.

TQL has come under fire recently after its handling of a mass firing in mid-March that left hundreds of former employees without severance packages, health insurance and non-compete agreements that prevent them from working for another brokerage within one year of leaving the company.

Sources said some had accepted their positions in late January or early February and that TQL’s short notice to either agree to the one-month start date delay or seek employment elsewhere has put them in a financial bind. 

With U.S. Department of Labor statistics showing that approximately 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the past month amid the coronavirus pandemic, a source said some new hires have no choice but to wait until May.

Several logistics and trucking companies have laid off workers in the past month in response to the pandemic’s effect on freight markets.

Layoffs started rippling through companies in mid-March as Freightos and Lipsey Logistics announced they were cutting staff. Freight brokerage Arrive Logistics of Austin, Texas, announced it was slashing 10% of its workforce because of the pandemic.

Covenant Transportation Group (NASDAQ: CVTI) recently announced that it’s shutting down Southern Refrigerated Transport’s Texarkana, Arkansas, terminal and will move its operations to its Chattanooga headquarters.

In Texas alone, nearly 1,200 layoffs were reported in the manufacturing, logistics or distribution industries, including Step Energy Solutions, Pioneer Frozen Foods, UTLX Manufacturing and Zachry Industrial-LyondellBasell, according to a recent FreightWaves report. 

As the economy falters, tech companies have also had to make employee cuts. In late March, KeepTruckin, the maker of electronic logging devices, announced it was forced to lay off 18% of its global workforce, or 349 of its 1,900 employees.

Autonomous trucking startup Kodiak Robotics of Mountain View, California, announced on April 16 that it laid off about 20% of its staff. 

If you have any additional information regarding layoffs or possible closures, send an email here.

Read more articles by FreightWaves’ Clarissa Hawes

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Clarissa Hawes

Clarissa has covered all aspects of the trucking industry for 14 years. She is an award-winning journalist known for her investigative and business reporting. Before joining FreightWaves, she wrote for Land Line Magazine and Trucks.com. Clarissa lives in the Kansas City area with her family. If you have a news tip or story idea, send her an email to chawes@freightwaves.com.

5 Comments

  1. TQL is a scam. They over hire sales representatives with the promise of turning them into brokers in six months. Of course, they can’t possibly turn that many sales representatives into brokers, so they start treating them like shit, hoping they will leave. They are known to offer severance packages of $1000 en made if employees voluntarily quit. The ones who don’t take it fired for bogus reasons. It the meantime they overwork kids doing unskilled phone work at a dalatied rate of around $12 an hour, They prey on young people whose first employment experience after college is being bullied and fired. This company should be shut down for good. Stay away.

  2. They just fired 700 people and now they are replacing them with 400 more? Then they keep all the customers ( if any) form the fired ones and give them to others and prevent the 700 from working in the Industry for a year. It is a turn and burn company that is the scourge of the Industry. What Brokerage does not gets tons of calls from TQL people asking “what they can help them with today”? They are terrible for trying to double broker your freight. At least CHR has trucks they will pretend to put your freight on. TQL has no assets and they call wanting to double broker. Terrible, just terrible thing to do their employees. Non-Competes, should be outlawed.

  3. Why would TQL pledge integrity to its new hires and commit to their start date? They did them a favor in my book. Find a better line of work than building a book of business for someone else.

  4. Churn rate is high at Coyote, Arrive, etc
    It’s the industry.
    Just way too many brokers chasing the same freight.
    I hope Convoy and Uber puts a nail in TQLs coffin.

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