Once you've passed your CDL exam, the next thing you need to do is decide if you're going to work with a trucking company or become an owner operator. This is a big decision because the roles are very different. Being an owner operator provides you with a lot more freedom, but it also comes with a lot more responsibility. Here's a look at some of the things you should consider before you choose.
Where Will You Get Your Truck?
When you work with a trucking company, a semi truck is usually provided as part of the contract and you're charged a lease fee for its use. If you're not in a position to purchase a truck, this may be the best option for you. However, you don't need to be able to buy the truck outright to become an owner operator. You can purchase a good quality used semi truck from a local dealer and even secure a payment plan in most cases.
Do You Have Cash Resources On Hand?
The old statement that you have to spend money to make money is definitely true when it comes to the trucking industry. Not only do you need to have a truck you can run, but you'll also need to have some money set aside for potential disasters, breakdowns and slow periods. When you work with a trucking company, you'll often have a company card to pay for repairs and other problems, but those costs are your responsibility as an owner operator. You'll also want to have enough financial stability to be able to turn down any loads that won't be significantly profitable for you so you can spend your time on the runs that will make you money.
Who Can You Trust To Manage The Business Side?
Unless you have a background in tax law, accounting, and business management, you're going to need help managing your business as an owner operator. Unlike drivers who work for a company, you won't be able to just turn in a log book and invoices to let someone else handle everything. You need to be able to manage a schedule, book loads, negotiate the contracts for those loads, keep your log book up to date, keep track of all of your expenses, and file accurate taxes at the end of the year. A business consultant, financial analyst, or other professional can help with this, so make sure you have that support.
14 September 2016
My dad was a mechanic, but I never had any interest in cars when I was young. My dream was to become an accountant, and that is what I do for a living today. When I began my career, the stress of my job began to take a toll on me. One day, I visited my dad, and like usual, I talked to him while he was fixing up a car in our garage. He told me to switch places with him and began telling me what to do with them to help him repair the car. After just a half-hour or so, I felt more relaxed than I had in months. The rest is history, as they say, and I am now passionate about automobiles and auto repair. I also find blogging very relaxing, so I decided to combine my favorite hobbies and start an auto blog!