Southland Transportation Employee Reviews

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1.0
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Special needs driving
Special Transportation Services Driver (Former Employee) –  Calgart6 November 2018
Special needs driving group is quite different from the school bus operators!! Cannot speak for the school bus side of things but the special needs group is an absolute tragedy.

Best thing about this job is the clients, everything else is a joke.

Management is continually trying to convince you (and themselves?) that everything is safe and quality driven. They promote themselves as professional but have an extremely distorted perspective of professional.
Training is inconsistent, poorly organized and barely meets requirements, mechanical condition of vehicles is poor at best. don't complain about anything or you will be on the out list.

Plenty of gossip, favoritism, lies and deception.

You will be lied to from the interview, in training, and at every (mandatory) staff meeting.

Schedule is constantly changing, at best you may know what days you work this week but not what time you start or finish. .Start time may be as early as 5.30 a.m or as late as 2.00 p.m. You will be required to be available (at work with your bus) for up to 13 hours but get paid for 8.5 at most.

MOST DRIVERS ARE SUFFERING FROM SLEEP DEPRIVATION!

You are expected to clean the bus (wash, sweep etc.) including puke, bathroom mishaps, etc..

Thought this would be a great semi retirement job, one of the worse companies I have ever worked for. If you have reached the absolute bottom of the barrel, can smile and keep your mouth shut about everything this may be a job you can tolerate, good luck.
Pros
Loved working with clients of all kinds, you know you are providing them with freedom and accessability.
Cons
Schedule is ridiculous, management is a painful joke.
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3.0
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Driving children to school and driving them home safely at end of school day.
School Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Medicine Hat, AB6 October 2018
I learned how to deal with children on the school bus and I learned how to be a better driver.
It was a temporary job but when I started there they had great management.
Management changed and a lot of politics came into play.
Pros
weekends and holidays off
Cons
split shift
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3.0
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Friendly work environment.
Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, AB25 September 2018
This is a good job for semi retired and parents with young children. Good pay for the experience and qualifications needed, excellent training and start-up support.
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3.0
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Dynamic job with wild hours
Access Driver (Former Employee) –  Calgary, AB23 September 2018
You spend your entire day driving the Calgary area, securing mobility aids to the bus, and assisting disabled clients with just about everything. Different locations and clients nearly every day to keep things interesting. You'll work split shifts meaning some days can be 13+ hours long while being paid for 8 hours. They take safety very seriously at Southland, no questions asked. Their pre-employment training is superb at preparing you for the job; don't take it lightly or you'll be let go. They have decent benefits after working there for 3 months and scheduled pay raises every few months or so. They go from being overstaffed to short staffed at moments notice so expect lots of phone calls on days off to come in. Good people who work at Southland, though you won't see them very often because you work alone all day.
Pros
lovely clients, decent pay, accommodating management, safety in every sense, excellent pre job training
Cons
long hours, occasional unpaid work, drama and gossip, random 5am shifts, splits shifts, unexpected overtime
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4.0
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It was a great gig, and people are always so friendly.
School Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Calgary, AB17 September 2018
The company's hiring process was streamlined, very well-organized. It works well if you need flexibility to run errands during the day. For the amount of time you're onboard, it pays well. However, if anything happens on the road, you're not getting paid.
Cons
Some buses would breakdown and rescue takes time. You're not paid for wait time.
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Awful place to work
bus driver (Current Employee) –  Calgary, AB13 September 2018
They constantly will remind you how you're not valued. Pay only minimum wage for a sensitive job. The kids and co-workers are amazing. Unfortunately the management is awful.
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Low payment
School Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Calgary, AB31 August 2018
I really enjoyed driving for Southland as a school bus driver. The hours are flexible and you get a lot of unpaid days off. The kids were a lot of fun. They have the best equipment in the industry. Unfortunately, the rate of pay is obscenely low relative to the responsibility. It's not a career, it's a hobby.
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2.0
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Unorganized
Receptionist (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, AB21 August 2018
Extremely unorganized, high turnover rate. Wages are a joke and they treat their drivers which are their bread and butter terribly. no wonder the turnover rate is so high. Office is very gossipy. Management doesn't seem to have any idea what anyone's work load is.
Pros
Five days a week
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Bad place to work
Driver (Current Employee) –  Calgary, AB16 August 2018
For the responsibilty and amount of training required for this job the pay is extremely low. All pd days are also unpaid, there's not a lot of room for advancement within the company. Office staff works based on favouritism and doesn't post all open runs. Way too many politics and cattiness in your offices, its so very unprofessional.

Some PMAs are not done in time. Most buses are only seen 2x a year.

With 250 CLN drivers office staff is overwhelmed and with many concerns and wanting support you are often dismissed. Out of 16hrs of special needs training only 20mins were touched on mental health. I was extremely unprepared due to this. I also received a $6/day pay cut taking a CLN run, with more responsibility and longer runs we should be paid more. They advertise $100/day but you make more like $90-98 before taxes. Because the runs were married and times were increased its impossible to help cover or make extra money.

In the winter door to door service increases your chances of getting stuck in the snow. They tell you to figure it out on your own until you are stuck for over an hour or tell them to send you help. I was stuck for over 2hrs before they even called a tow truck.

The perks are you save $1200 a month in child care- but you make $18,000 annually, which is not enough to live on. Also because of the change in runs, you now could potentially have a run that doesn't work for your kids school and numerous drivers have been told to find child care for their kids and "too bad so sad" in this predicament, this contradicts the whole point of this job. All in
  more... all this job isn't worth the perks unfortunately.  less
Pros
Save on daycare costs
Cons
Everything
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4.0
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Best job ever!
Bus Driver (Current Employee) –  Bonnyville, AB15 August 2018
I love this job and have had the same route for 9 years. If it paid more I would drive school bus full time! You get very attached to your kids and their parents!
Pros
Best kids and memories are made!!
Cons
Not enough hours to sustain full time work
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3.0
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Fun but minimum pay.
BUS DRIVER (Current Employee) –  Calgary, AB13 August 2018
I really enjoyed driving for Southland as a school bus driver. The hours are flexible and you get a lot of unpaid days off. The kids were a lot of fun. They have the best equipment in the industry. Unfortunately, the rate of pay is obscenely low relative to the responsibility. It's not a career, it's a hobby.
Pros
Kids are fun and lots of time off.
Cons
Minimal pay.
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4.0
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A great place to work for the right person
Bus driver / Trainer (Current Employee) –  Calgary, AB7 August 2018
Southland Calgary as a company has a great culture of support amongst the drivers, dispatchers and trainers. The training staff are amongst the best in the industry.

As a bus driver, you should not be expecting great pay, but the job itself can be very rewarding for those that love kids and like to feel as if they have made a difference every day. The free time is also a benefit.
Pros
culture, rewarding work, training staff
Cons
pay, benefits
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2.0
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Addicted to the hours but that's about it.
School Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Okotoks, AB6 August 2018
Pay is never fully explained to you and a total mystery across the board. Pay readjusted after my run increased greatly per day but no back pay for the 1.5 months I worked already. Have to watch pay like a hawk to ensure accuracy.

Screwed up ROE at the end of the year (after speaking with other drivers I discovered I wasn't the only one) and I spent hours on the phone over a period of several weeks with EI trying to explain.

Management doesn't care. They spout all kinds of lingo and doublespeak about culture and safety and values but don't uphold any of it. Buses are in poor repair. Mechanics are either overworked or lazy. Seen both. Office sticks together and most drivers are left to be gossiped about and bad mouthed like crazy. Avoid it at all costs. Favoritism is king. And, boy, does it get played. If you have no problem sucking up and doing anything they ask without complaint or expecting compensation you might be ok.

My run paid ok but the garbage environment combined with the total lack of support and sneaky backdoor dealing (telling you one thing and then telling someone else another or playing drivers off each other), from management don't make the hours worth it. It's ok if you just drive your bus and never have a breakdown, a complaint or want to be involved in anything. Just drive your bus and stay out of the office.
Pros
Hours for school run. Days off . Bring kids with you.
Cons
Management, pay, office staff, senior drivers
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5.0
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excellent company!
spare bus driver (Current Employee) –  Cochrane, AB3 August 2018
excellent from start to finish, My trainer was cathy couldnt have asked for anyone better!
I then have been driving as a spare and hoping to be more permanant come september!
oportunities for summer work is also available.

Having work for a previous school company Southland came up tops!

have a great day!
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5.0
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Great company to work for
STS Driver/Relief Dispatcher (Current Employee) –  Calgary, AB26 June 2018
Southland Transportation is all about safety. Great people, great drivers! Hours are not great, but you have a choice to work it or not. The hours are not for everyone.
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2.0
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Poor office environment
Intermediate Accountant (Former Employee) –  Calgary, AB14 June 2018
While the office is made up of a small group (about 20), it is incredibly difficult to get in. Those with experience ignore newer individuals, any outside opinion or suggestions, and only listen to those who have been there for 5+ years. Meanwhile, the benefits are poor, the management structure is weak and the growth opportunities are minimal.
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5.0
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Really like working there
Driver (Current Employee) –  Edmonton, AB8 June 2018
They are really friendly. I do a few runs so I make more money. I also pick up charters whenever I can.

You get really attached to the kids you ship to and from school. I can also spend more time with my two kids.

Buses do break down, but that’s to be expected of a vehicle doing that many kms in a day. I drive an old international and I love it. It has excellent heat in the winter.
Pros
Lots of time with my kids
Cons
Cold a S S days in winter.
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Not a great place to work but it is a job
Driver (Current Employee) –  Edmonton, AB8 June 2018
If you don't mind working for a company where management does not care about its people or the fleet of busses then this is the place for you. Driving is very easy. Getting paid properly is an issue. You have to watch your pay, as payroll does not seem to care if their job is done right or not.
Pros
Lots of time between shifts
Cons
Pay not great for what they expect of you. There are no benefits, no insentives to go above and beyond.
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4.0
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Such a fun welcoming place to work
School Bus Driver (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, AB7 June 2018
Southland is not only a great place to work but they will train you from your class 5 to get you your class 2 and help you work towards becoming a professional driver. I found this to be an excellent job while my children were in school as you can take them with you and have days and simmers off when they do.
Pros
Bring your children to work
Cons
laid of during summer
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5.0
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Very enjoyable job!
Special Needs Bus Driver (Current Employee) –  Edmonton, AB15 May 2018
Good culture! Friendly staff and dispatch. A typical day consists of arriving at the yard early to pre-trip your bus. i get there early to avoid congestion in the yard. You go do your run, drop the kids off and then you are free till the afternoon. Then basically its the reverse of the morning ending at the yard with a post-trip. The mechanics are awesome getting bus issues fixed fast. I really don't have anything negative to say about southland. They gave me a job as a new commercial driver when no one else would. So Good Job and thank-you
Pros
schedule is nice
Cons
Part-time
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3.1
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