Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs fall into the Enterprising Theme Code Category of the Strong Interest Inventory®. This inventory has been used since its initial release in 1927 to help individuals find a career that is a good fit for them. There are several components to this approach including a large database of careers and personal interests, workplace preferences, and professional strengths of people who are successful in those careers. The result is a comprehensive assessment that sheds light on how a particular individual aligns with these various considerations. The assessment is used to direct individuals to specific careers that they might be interested in and which will leverage their strengths. The Enterprising Theme revolves around selling products and services, and requires individuals who are energetic, people-oriented, and financially-adept.
Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs transport people and occasionally goods from one place to another. To do so, they must follow all local, state, and federal safety regulations, and must ensure that their passengers are in compliance as well. This may include testing and maintaining equipment, including brakes, wipers, lights, or other mechanical components to ensure that they are operating properly and safely. If they discover problems, they should communicate their findings to their supervisors or dispatchers, or even automobile mechanics. While some taxi and limousine companies contract their car cleaning and maintenance work, in other cases Taxi Drivers may need to perform minor repairs themselves, including vacuuming and cleaning the interiors. Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs also provide a good deal of customer service, including scheduling when and where certain customers should be picked up or dropped off, and assisting them with their luggage. They may also provide passengers with details about local points of interest, including hotels and restaurants.
Payment is often arranged via a taximeter or rate system. In some cases, Taxi Drivers may have a set rate within a certain radius of an airport or other point of interest. Along the way, Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs communicate with their dispatchers via radio, telephone, or computer to confirm successful trips, and to receive new assignments. In case of an accident, Taxi Drivers inform their dispatcher and the police of the events that transpired, location, and other details relating to the accident.
Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs use many different kinds of tools and technologies, including the cars themselves, as well as alarm systems, taximeters, global positional system software, credit card processing machines, and security cameras to ensure their own and their customer’s quality of experience. To communicate with their dispatchers, they may use smartphones, personal digital assistants, cell phones, or other kinds of technology. The software used is minimal, beyond a standard navigation application or interface. It may include Digital Dispatch or another dispatching software, Actsoft Comet, or a database user interface and query software.
Successful Taxi drivers rarely have advanced degrees, with 78% having a high school diploma or less. However, they do need to have a strong proclivity for customer and personal service, developed active listening skills, and excellent vision, reaction time and hand-eye coordination skills. They should be expert drivers, capable of keeping themselves and their clients as safe as possible.
As of 2015, the national median Taxi Driver and Chauffeur salary was $11.30 per hour, with the highest paid drivers being paid $18.75 per hour. However, there is significant geographic variation, with the best-paid Taxi Drivers in Connecticut and New York earning over $48,000 per year, and the lowest-paid drivers in Mississippi earning as little as $16,000 per year. However, the rates of employment are projected to rise substantially before 2024, with Nevada and Utah both projected to grow over 40%. California and New York alone are to add over 8,000 jobs total between them, because they are both such large business centers and tourist destinations.
Below are some employment trends for Taxi drivers and Chauffeurs
- Median Taxi Driver and Chauffer Salary: $11.30 hourly; $23,510 annually
- Employment: 234,000 employees
- Projected growth (2014-2024): Faster than average (9% to 13%)
- Projected job openings (2014-2024): 74,800
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- Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data and 2014-2022 employment projections Onetonline.org