WalMart made a small beginning as a single discount store. Today, it has grown into being the largest retailer in the world, with businesses spread across more than 25 countries. The backbone of any retail organization is its delivery mechanism. Wal-Mart is among the leaders in this as well. It operates one of the world’s largest distribution mechanisms through more than 6000 tractors and 60,000 trailers.
To maintain a distribution model of this level, it’s essential to have qualified drivers. WalMart is proud of the fact that it has a team of drivers that is among the most skilled and competent. Without compromising on safety, they drive more than 700 million miles annually – with each driver clocking more than 1,00,000 miles every year! Drivers choose the routes in a way that minimizes costs & time.
By now, you have understood that WalMart takes a lot of care in recruiting the drivers as much of the delivery standards depend on the drivers’ quality & performance. So, the interview process for the drivers is also fairly extensive.
However, before we discuss the sample interview questions, there are certain points that you need to keep in mind.
Points to remember for a Candidate for a Truck Driver’s Post
- Be sure of the fact that your Commercial Driving License (CDL) is not expired
- Maintaining a clean driving record is critical as WalMart attaches high importance to this
- Knowledge of traffic regulations, highway driving rules, basic vehicle repair, and maintenance, & GPS operation is mandatory. A test drive will check for this knowledge of yours
- It’s not mandatory, but some knowledge of trucking operations for the retail industry would be very helpful for the interview
Now, let’s look at some sample questions (and their possible answers) for a typical Wal-Mart interview for its truck drivers.
Questions Related to Your Job Role
- How many years of commercial vehicle driving experience do you have?
Mention the facts here, nothing to hide. If you have driven any vehicle other than truck/trailers, do mention that as well.
- How many miles have you driven & across which states? Do you have a driving experience across countries/in any other country?
Mention your inter-state driving experience. Focus on the different terrains, e.g. Mid-West, if you have driven there. If you have driven to Canada/Mexico, or in any other country, that adds more value to your candidature, so be sure to mention that.
- What’s the longest distance that you have driven at a stretch? How did you manage to keep yourself alert?
If you haven’t driven long distances (e.g. several hundred miles) at a stretch, then please be truthful about it. But in case you have, Wal-Mart would be eager to know how you kept yourself in a proper driving condition all this while – as the safety of its staff is of utmost importance to them. You must have taken regular breaks for freshening up, coffee, etc. Be upfront about them.
- What papers/documentation should the driver maintain?
This relates to your most basic knowledge, so you can’t go wrong here. Be fully updated about the documentation requirements of a commercial driver.
- How much importance do you attach to safety?
For every responsible driver – commercial or personal vehicle – safety should be of paramount importance. As we have already mentioned, staff & pedestrian safety plays a major role in WalMart’s operation policies. So, your response should be likewise.
Also, find easy exercise for truck drivers that one should follow.
Questions Related to Practical Situations
- How do/would you handle a client’s negative reaction due to a delayed delivery?
If you did face such a situation, in reality, you must have handled it with a lot of calm and gentle behavior. You offered profuse apologies to the client and explained the genuine cause for the delay, without making it sound like a lame excuse. Answer this question accordingly, as Wal-Mart appreciates the fact its staff is truthful and doesn’t cause service delays without genuine emergencies.
- An accident occurred involving you that wasn’t due to your fault. How would you handle this?
In such cases, Wal-Mart never expects its drivers to take the law into their own hands. So, even if you haven’t faced anything like this till now, you would need to let the local authorities & police handle the situation. You need to inform your reporting senior about the incident immediately.
Questions Related to Behavioral Aspects
- How was your relation with your past clients?
This is a tricky one. Nothing in this world is 100% perfect, so it’s quite possible that you might have had a few strained professional relationships in the past job/s. While it’s ok to own up, don’t focus too much on this aspect. That would let the course of the interview move in this unwelcome direction. So, just mention one/two cases if they actually happened and how, in spite of best efforts, the relations weren’t mended fully. But apart from them, you were – and are – in good terms with all your past clients.
To conclude, the bottom line for success in WalMart’s interview for truck drivers is – experience, confidence, truthfulness, and most important – adherence to rules. Focus on these aspects, and you would stand a very good chance of making it. Best of luck!