Many of the back-office responsibilities of running a trucking firm can be managed with the help of a truck dispatch service. Some freight dispatchers offer end-to-end services, including everything from locating cargoes to making sure shippers pay their bills on time. Other dispatchers are experts in specific services.
The majority of dispatchers charge in one of two ways. You will be charged a fixed amount or a percentage of the load. The method of payment is negotiable.
A dispatcher can provide the following services:
- Finding loads is likely the essential service they offer, particularly for new owner-operators who are just getting started and don’t yet have a client list.
- Assigning cargoes and managing drivers: If you have drivers, a dispatch provider should be familiar with their routes, how long they’ve been home, and their availability. This knowledge aids in matching a load to the optimal resource available to provide it.
- Maintaining motor carrier compliance: This service is necessary to keep you on the road doing what you do best: pulling loads.
- Handling difficulties and weather delays: A professional dispatcher can assist you in planning for and dealing with weather delays, traffic congestion, and other challenges that inevitably arise while on the road.
- Customer service: A dispatcher can assist you in managing relationships with shippers, resolving issues, and establishing suitable service standards.
- Billing paperwork and collections: A
- can also manage the paperwork in delivering and billing a cargo. All invoice submissions to the shipper (or a factoring provider), collections follow-ups, and payment processing can all be included in this paperwork.
Will they help your trucking company?
In short, the correct truck dispatch service can be a valuable ally in running a profitable trucking business. They can be especially beneficial to drivers who are making the shift from “company drivers” to “owner-operators.”
The difficulty to find loads while running a trucking firm is one of the main reasons why owner-operators fail in their first year. Managing a trucking carrier’s back-office tasks takes a lot of time.
Keep in mind that your carrier can only benefit from the correct dispatch firm. In a heartbeat, the wrong one might knock you out of business.
Consider the following if you intend to employ a dispatch service:
- Get referrals: Find out which dispatch service your owner-operator colleagues use and recommend. This is the most effective method for locating a service that suits your requirements.
- Figure out what services you’ll require:
Make a list of everything you need to do to run a profitable trucking firm. Include everything and be as specific as possible. Determine which tasks you can realistically do and which you cannot (or will not) complete. Check to see if the dispatch services you’re considering meet all of these criteria. Anything they can’t do has to be done by someone else – and that someone else is you.
- Understand all costs: Before you start running loads, make sure you understand all costs, including your own and the cost of dispatching. Calculate how much it costs you to manage your company and how much the dispatcher charges you. This formula aids you and your dispatcher determine whether or not a load is profitable enough to pull. Keep in mind that some dispatchers may require you to pay them immediately, adding to your financial difficulties. In this instance, factoring may be able to help you fund their payments.