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Family-run Illinois trucking company stays ahead of the game by focusing on safety and driver satisfaction

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Content sponsored by Danieli Inc.

It’s not easy being a smaller trucking company in 2023, but the team at Illinois-based carrier Danieli Inc. has found remarkable success by focusing on the safety and success of their drivers — above all else.

How Did Danieli Inc. Get Its Start?

CDLLife connected with company co-owner Daniel Stoychev to learn more about the history of Danieli and to get the story on how they’ve effectively evolved a company culture that focuses on safety and driver appreciation.

Danieli Inc. was started in 2007 by husband and wife owner-operators, and to this day the company has stayed in the family, having grown to a fleet of about 50 trucks. The current owners are proud to run the operation with the same ethics, values, and goals that it was started with more than 15 years ago.

As a company founded by owner-operators, Danieli focuses on providing programs for both owner operators and company drivers that really help the drivers succeed and potentially grow into owner-operators or even grow a fleet of their own. The company has the resources to tailor the driver’s career experience and growth depending on how ambitious they are.

This is not a large corporation that looks at every driver or employee as a number, we treat everyone as our business partner whether in the office or on the road. Without happy drivers and a happy team, there is no Danieli Inc.,” said Stoychev.

Loyalty Programs and Bonuses Reward Drivers For Their Hard Work

Leadership within Danieli has put major effort into growing the company’s numerous driver bonus and loyalty programs.

We really focus on putting everything we can into it, and making sure that our most valuable asset, (the driver) is happy, safe, and heard. At the end of the day the trucks don’t run themselves. We want satisfied drivers on the road, not cranky and mistreated ones,” Stoychev said.

Danieli drivers are always treated to a bonus every time they have a successful inspection, whether it is level I, II, or III. In addition to that, the company evaluates every driver every 90 days and takes the top compliant, communicative, and all-around productive drivers and rewards them with a bonus, a potential pay raise, and company wide recognition.

On top of that, every qualified driver selected each quarter gets automatically entered into a raffle, and at the end of the year, the winning driver is treated to a vacation for two, courtesy of the company.

We also have quarterly random gifts such as steak and lobster dinners, V.I.P driver dinners, cash bonuses, extra days at home and much more. We want drivers to know that we are paying attention to the hard work, and the risks that they take everyday being on the road, and also want to motivate those drivers that we know can be doing better and can improve themselves. So it works for everyone at the end of the day,” Stoychev explained.

Safety Is #1 At Danieli Inc.

Danieli keeps safety at the top of the list when it comes to the company’s priorities. The entire company, including drivers and office staff, take safety extremely seriously in order to ensure smooth day-to-day operations and continued success.

We know what a bad safety record can do and we know what not emphasizing safety can do as well. At the end of the day, all things are put aside when you think about what can happen when equipment is not properly maintained, when drivers are not properly managed,” Stoychev noted. “There are humans in that truck, and humans all around on the highway, the last thing we want is for someone to get seriously injured or even killed.

The company’s emphasis on safety really starts from the moment they receive a driver application, according to Stoychev. A thorough background check is done on the potential driver partner, including a check on their PSP, MVR, PRE-EMPL history, and prior work history to make sure that the driver is a good fit within the company culture.

Following the applicant’s approval, a phone interview is conducted to make sure the driver understands what Danieli is looking for in a driver partner, and to make sure it will be a good fit for both sides. Once they come to orientation, there is a session of training to help refresh the drivers on all DOT, FMCSA, and company rules and regulations.

We need to be 100% sure that the driver is confident getting on the road, and we have 100% confidence in ourselves that we have prepared him on our end. Safety is top priority 24/7, and one part of the business that we handle with zero tolerance, zero compromise,” Stoychev said.

Every driver is evaluated from a safety standpoint on a quarterly basis. Any safety issues are addressed promptly, and drivers are consistently acknowledged and rewarded for their commitment to safety.

Join The Driving Team

Headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Illinois, Danieli Inc. provides reliable dry van, refrigerated, and hazmat transportation services to clients across the U.S. If you’re interested in joining the company’s growing team as a professional driver, please click here.

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