Are You Really Prepared For The Economic Upturn?
It’s coming to a trucking business near you. You’ve felt it creeping up on you for any number of months, but now it seems like it’s right in your face. The economic upturn is going to make your life a wreck if you’re not prepared.
So what’s the big deal about the economic upturn in the trucking industry? Remember those days when you had to cut back, and scrape for loads? Remember all the maintenance you had to let go until you could afford it, or the equipment you didn’t buy because it didn’t make sense at the time? You lost money then, and now you’ll lose more money if you’re not prepared to take advantage of the opportunities available.
What’s going to hold you back? Unless you kept and maintained all of your equipment and drivers from 2010, you’re probably going to be lacking the resources to tackle all the loads you can. The good news is that you’re not the only one. The bad news is that you’ve got some catching up to do. Fortunately, everyone else is in the middle of getting caught up, as well. The longer you put it off, the less revenue you’re going to be bringing in later.
Where to start? Maintenance and updates are always the beginning. Bring your existing equipment up to spec, and update how you track your maintenance, your drivers and loads. Without proper maintenance, your fleet dies a lingering, costly death. Some states won’t even let you across their border without certain equipment, so there’s real incentive to make that maintenance happen.
Without proper tracking of your field assets, you have no way to determine where your potentially blossoming profits are spent. Additionally, before you can even consider new equipment, you have to have a way to make sure your existing equipment is being used in the most efficient manner possible. Adding equipment doesn’t justadd capacity, it adds maintenance and man hours.
Update your equipment
The industry, and electronics have improved dramatically since 2010. Electronic logging makes tracking HOS easier, as well as determining when your drivers need to rest. Other computer and phone applications make it easier to find the cheapest diesel in an area, certified CAT scales and rest stops on the road. Look into these if you’re not using them. Additionally, look for an expense tracking software suite. You need to be able to drill down to any expense, anywhere in your fleet.