There may never have been a better time in this country to start a trucking company than the present time. Statistics show us that at least 70% of all freight which is shipped in this country is done by trucks. With an ongoing driver shortage, increased freight rates, and constantly rising demand for shipping, there could hardly be more opportune moment to start up your trucking business.
Here are some things to remember when you go about launching your trucking company.
Create a business plan
Just like with any other business startup, it’s essential that you have a roadmap of where you’re going with your trucking company, and what you hope to achieve. The trucking business will be no exception to this rule.
Planning and preparation
Most trucking businesses start out with the owner also serving as an operator. For this, you will have to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL), and so will everyone else on your staff of drivers. Start planning for your fleet of trucks and the drivers who will operate them.
For startup purposes, you’ll need probably somewhere between $10,000 and $30,000 to cover the costs of vehicle down payments, insurance, permits, and expenses which are specific to each of the individual states.
Besides obtaining a valid CDL, owner-operators of a trucking company will be required to obtain a US Department of Transportation number, a motor carrier number, an internal registration plan, and stickers for the International Fuel Tax Agreement.
When you’re purchasing your company assets, it’s always better to look for quality rather than quantity or cheap pricing. In the long run, vehicles can cost you more in maintenance than better vehicles will cost you upfront.
Insuring your vehicles
It’s essential that you have your vehicles protected against the unanticipated eventualities like accidents or vehicle damage which could prove disastrous to your business. Shop around for the most favorable rates, and make sure you obtain good coverage for your vehicles.
Before your operators are ready to actually haul cargo across the country, you’ll also need to install radio frequency ID tags on the windshield of all your trucking company vehicles. If you’re going to be operating interstate, you’ll also need the appropriate license and registration for each vehicle.
This could be one of the single hardest aspects of starting up your trucking company, especially with the number of qualified truck drivers in such short supply. You’ll have to do whatever you can to attract the best drivers, and devise a program for employee retention so you don’t lose them.
Grow your customer base
It’s a good practice to diversify your customer base as much as possible, and to never allow a single customer to comprise more than 20% of your business. Build a company website and establish a social media presence, so that you can appeal to a broader audience, and build up your customer base.
Starting your own trucking company
If you’re thinking of starting up your own trucking company, contact us at Rotay Capital Finance. We may be able to provide financial assistance, as well as guidance to help you achieve your objectives.