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Driver/Owner Operator Careers

A Driver/Owner Operator is in possession of a truck and is not afraid to use it. He or she has a CDL driver's license, too, and ample experience in driving large vehicles.

Owner-operators steer clear from drugs and respect road rules, at least on the job. They are responsible for making sure both cargo and the truck they are driving arrive safely at the destination. They keep their rigs clean and fully operational, checking regularly for damage.

They also have to load and unload their trucks, communicate with dispatchers, plan their routes, and log their deliveries. As they usually work on a freelance basis, they have to find their own clients as well, submit their taxes, and make sure they make more than what they spend.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a driver/owner operator. For example, did you know that they make an average of $64.47 an hour? That's $134,091 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 5% and produce 99,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Driver/Owner Operator Do

There are certain skills that many driver/owner operators have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed hand-eye coordination, physical health and visual ability.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a driver/owner operator, we found that a lot of resumes listed 36.1% of driver/owner operators included cdl, while 25.8% of resumes included dot, and 24.3% of resumes included otr. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the driver/owner operator job title. But what industry to start with? Most driver/owner operators actually find jobs in the transportation and retail industries.

How To Become a Driver/Owner Operator

If you're interested in becoming a driver/owner operator, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 10.8% of driver/owner operators have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 1.4% of driver/owner operators have master's degrees. Even though some driver/owner operators have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a driver/owner operator. When we researched the most common majors for a driver/owner operator, we found that they most commonly earn high school diploma degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on driver/owner operator resumes include diploma degrees or bachelor's degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a driver/owner operator. In fact, many driver/owner operator jobs require experience in a role such as driver. Meanwhile, many driver/owner operators also have previous career experience in roles such as truck driver or delivery driver.

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Average Salary
$134,091
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
5%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
345,482
Job Openings

Driver/Owner Operator Career Paths

Top Careers Before Driver/Owner Operator

Driver
39.5 %

Top Careers After Driver/Owner Operator

Driver
46.3 %

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Driver/Owner Operator

Driver/Owner Operators in America make an average salary of $134,091 per year or $64 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $220,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $81,000 per year.
Average Salary
$134,091

Best Paying Cities

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
Newark, NJ
Salary Range95k - 192k$135k$135,488
Bridgeport, CT
Salary Range92k - 182k$130k$129,713
Newark, CA
Salary Range89k - 185k$129k$128,728
Albuquerque, NM
Salary Range86k - 188k$128k$127,799
Boston, MA
Salary Range91k - 177k$128k$127,629
Las Vegas, NV
Salary Range86k - 188k$127k$127,446
$66k
$203k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Driver Operator
Driver Operator
Lake County
Lake County
01/27/2021
01/27/2021
$41,65701/27/2021
$41,657
Driver/Operator
Driver/Operator
First Transit
First Transit
01/20/2021
01/20/2021
$39,13101/20/2021
$39,131
Cdl-A Driver-Owner Operator
Cdl-A Driver-Owner Operator
H&M Intermodal Services
H&M Intermodal Services
12/31/2020
12/31/2020
$156,52512/31/2020
$156,525
Driver/Operator
Driver/Operator
First Transit
First Transit
12/11/2020
12/11/2020
$39,13112/11/2020
$39,131
Truck Driver-Owner Operator
Truck Driver-Owner Operator
H&M Intermodal Services
H&M Intermodal Services
11/25/2020
11/25/2020
$156,52511/25/2020
$156,525
See More Recent Salaries

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Driver/Owner Operator Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Driver/Owner Operator. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Driver/Owner Operator Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Driver/Owner Operator resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

Driver/Owner Operator Demographics

Gender

male

84.7 %

female

12.3 %

unknown

3.0 %

Ethnicity

White

58.5 %

Hispanic or Latino

24.4 %

Black or African American

11.8 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.1 %

French

6.7 %

Russian

4.2 %
See More Demographics

Driver/Owner Operator Education

Majors

Business
23.7 %

Degrees

High School Diploma

50.1 %

Associate

13.8 %

Diploma

11.6 %
See More Education Info
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Driver/Owner Operator

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 36.1% of driver/owner operators listed cdl on their resume, but soft skills such as hand-eye coordination and physical health are important as well.

Best States For a Driver/Owner Operator

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a driver/owner operator. The best states for people in this position are Hawaii, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Vermont. Driver/owner operators make the most in Hawaii with an average salary of $190,224. Whereas in New Jersey and Connecticut, they would average $128,042 and $124,907, respectively. While driver/owner operators would only make an average of $124,372 in Vermont, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Wyoming

Total Driver/Owner Operator Jobs:
895
Highest 10% Earn:
$213,000
Location Quotient:
1.68
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. North Dakota

Total Driver/Owner Operator Jobs:
1,345
Highest 10% Earn:
$213,000
Location Quotient:
1.62
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Mexico

Total Driver/Owner Operator Jobs:
1,885
Highest 10% Earn:
$212,000
Location Quotient:
1.08
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Driver/Owner Operator Employers

1. Uber Technologies
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$102,925
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
211+
2. FedEx
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$147,934
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
181+
3. MV Transportation
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$65,315
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
138+
4. Schneider National
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$100,668
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
122+
5. C.R. England
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$83,117
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
113+
6. U.S. Xpress
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$84,660
Driver/Owner Operators Hired: 
98+

Driver/Owner Operator Videos

Updated October 2, 2020