Do you work in the trucking industry? Or are you thinking of starting your own trucking company? Then continue reading to learn about the essentials of running a trucking business!
Undoubtedly, the trucking industry is lucrative. As you consider starting a trucking firm, there are several business prospects emerging in your specialized industry. There is no doubt that as an owner-operator, you have the ability to be your own boss, earn more money, choose your own loads, and decide when to take time off.
Also, check – Best Tips -How To Save Money For Your Business
However, this is not a job for everyone. Many of them fail quickly because they are unable to compete with new and existing major enterprises.
Therefore, if you are a truck owner who wants to retain his trucking business in the long run, you must first examine a number of factors. Apart from keeping an eye on your competition, there is a trucking business checklist that you should not overlook.
So, without further ado, let’s dive into them.
Table of Contents
Mandatory Checklist for Trucking Business
Choose Your Trucking Sector
As you enter into the trucking industry, you will learn about the different types of trucks and the services that go with them. For example, there are food trucks, pickup trucks, refrigerated trucks, heavy-duty trucks, and more.
Because your startup’s resources are limited, focusing on one area will be a prudent first step. When your company’s finances improve, you may expand your service offerings. The advantage of selecting a specific specialty is that you may focus all of your company’s efforts toward speedier business growth.
Know About Your Upfront Costs
Inadequate cash flow is the leading cause of new business failure. As appealing as the trucking sector appears to be, it requires a significant investment from you. You’ll have to spend a lot of money upfront before you can start driving. Some of these expenses include your truck’s down payment, number plates, coverage, and license fees. After these initial charges, you will have further monthly expenses like gasoline, maintenance, and food.
Remember, the initial 6 to 12 months will be challenging as you strive to recoup your original investment. So, before you start your firm, make sure you have significant funds.
Don’t Forget To Check –8 Habits That Keep You Poor Even With A Reasonable Income
Obtain Your Commercial Driver License (CDL)
Being the owner of a trucking company, you must get a Commercial Driver’s License for yourself and your truck drivers. A CDL is required in many places in the United States before running commercial trucks. According to a business report, your vehicles must have credentials that prove they can ply roadways too.
Getting a CDL is not difficult. Anyone driving must have a clean past record of driving and must pass a drug test. This is to maintain security and reliability requirements. Once you grasp the precise requirements and laws that come with driving a large rig, you may register for the CDL via your local DMV.
Don’t Forget To Check –What Places Can Americans Travel Without a Passport?
Understand Your Tax Policies
One of the most significant distinctions between independent truck drivers and truck owner-operators is how they are taxed. Many first-time business owners are unaware that they must begin paying taxes quarterly instead of getting taxes routinely deducted from their paychecks by an employer. ATBS advises drivers to keep aside about 25-30% of their weekly profits for quarterly taxes. This implies that you should retain all company records and documents to conveniently track your revenue.
Get Your Truck Insured Properly
While operating trucks on roads or highways, there is always a constant threat of indulging in accidents or any sort of calamity. This is why it is of utmost importance to have proper insurance for your commercial trucks. This way you will not only save your company from any financial strain but will also safeguard your brand’s reputation. Different types of truck insurances are available such as liability insurance, physical insurance, comprehensive insurance, trailer interchange, and more. You can choose based on the services your business provides.
Acquire USDOT Identification Number
If your business runs commercial trucks that transit cargo over state lines, you must register with the FMCSA. As per FMCSA or Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the USDOT number is a special identification that is used for audits, examinations, inspections, and compliance evaluations.
You will be issued permanent permission after you have obtained the number. You should maintain the main copy at your workplace, but you should also print or stamp the number on your truck. This will aid authorities in identifying your rig and keeping you out of difficulty.
Get Familiar With The Rules You Need To Adhere
Before you begin as a truck operator, you must be aware of the guidelines and regulations that must be followed. To avoid having your business shut down, your vehicle must exceed CSA (Compliance, Safety, Accountability ) criteria.
Each driver must have a functional ELD in their truck which is an e-logging device. This will assist you in keeping track of your weekly Hours of Service. Lastly, the CSA seems to have a set of physical requirements that must be met in order to be considered a qualified driver. Before driving, each owner-operator must be familiar with all of these rules.
Finish the Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Procedure
As per the Department of Transportation guidelines, the federal UCR agreement applies to your firm if you run a truck in interstate or international trade. This method was developed to verify that a motorist had valid insurance in all states where he or she operates. You may sign up for this using your dot and mc numbers. If you want further information, contact your state’s DMV.
Build A Professional Website For Your Trucking Business
And last but not the least, design a user-friendly website. Your website serves as a portal for your clients to learn more about your trucking company’s operations. Before purchasing a company’s products or services, most people seek its website. Your future potential customers will also do the same to learn more about the trucking services you provide. As a result, your web pages must have all of the pertinent data. Check that the site has important sections such as home, services, contact us, about us, or testimonials.
Recommended –Why SSL is Important for a website?
Get a Standard Carrier Alpha Code (SCAC)
Finally, a Standard Carrier Alpha Code is required if you wish to carry goods internationally. This code model is constructive, and most firms will refuse to cooperate with transport providers that are lacking a SCAC. This code essentially identifies transporters to industry authorities and establishes a trust framework for all parties. If you want any help, you can go to the National Motor Freight Traffic Association.
That concludes the list of requirements for running a trucking company. Hope you found this blog informative! If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments section below. We would be glad to answer.