The holiday season is slowly creeping up on us. In fact, it’s almost here. It is perhaps the busiest time of the year for most trucking companies. A great time to capitalize on pre-existing relationships and also to welcome new opportunities for expanding your client base. Preparation is necessary in order to ensure that your systems and processes are in check. Transport businesses must evaluate the economic environment in order to meet demand and deliver excellent customer service.
So, how does such preparation take place? What things should you consider evaluating to ensure adequate positioning? Follow along as we share some tips that you too can utilize within your trucking company for a smoother holiday season.
Tip #1: Be Selective About Your Freight
Consider varying the sources of freight by using mobile applications and load boards. There are several social, economic, political, and environmental aspects that are constantly at play. Mobile app integration gives the supply chain the crucial elasticity it needs to run like a well-oiled machine. While simultaneously also offering real-time updates, insights, and flexibility. Establishing a regimen that allows you to optimize your earning potential while supporting your goals for work-life balance is essential.
For instance, some of the clients that Sugar Creek Transportation currently moves freight for include Amazon, The Home Depot, and Anheuser-Busch. These relationships have been nurtured over several years. As result, they have turned into lucrative opportunities through serviceability, customer service, experience, and of course value.
Tip #2: Keep Your Equipment Ready and Steady
Preventative maintenance on your trucks is essential for anticipating and meeting capacity needs. Your trucks might have been idle for a while or simply remained unused for some time. Now is not the time to drop loads or break down on the road as your load demand and capacity is on the uprise. Correct your setup as soon as possible to avoid any potential problems. Make a list that includes:
- Fuel System
- Cooling system
- Transmission mounts
- Driveshafts or CV joints
- Drive belt
- Serpentine belt
- Engine oil and filter
- Transmission fluid
- Tires and tire tread
This list might seem a bit longer although it will save you tremendous time and money during the holiday season. It will especially help mitigate and prevent potential unexpected breakdowns. The last thing that you need to encounter during the 2022 holiday season.
Our President, Monica Byers performs a daily afternoon walk through the yard. It’s fun and invigorating. In doing so, she performs a top-level inspection of potential damage, wear/tear, and identifying any necessary repairs. The walkthrough can take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes but during the holiday season, it equates to lots of time and money saved.
Tip #3: Dusting Off That Insurance
Insurance is something that should be considered at all times. It will save you lots of money in the long term. Transport companies may rest easy knowing that their assets are protected thanks to commercial trucking insurance. Because trucks are so costly, this is extremely important for drivers to remember. There is a plan in Congress that would raise the minimum insurance requirements, so those regulations will shift.
Now is the time to get in touch with your insurer and discuss the implications of these alterations for your company. One of the main reasons trucking firms go out of business is the exorbitant cost of insurance. Taking preventative measures now will allow you to account for the higher costs in your budget.
Tip #4: Projected Fuel Costs
Gauging fuel costs is extremely rare. Only a few trucking companies actually strive to project their fuel costs for a quarter. Let alone half a year or even a full year. As we step into the holiday season, slowly but surely, a company like Sugar Creek Transportation must indeed project fuel costs. Our fleet consists of 125 trucks and with that many company drivers and owner-operators, nearly six figures in fuel expense can be reached quite fast. This is precisely why gauging an estimated fuel expense is an intelligent move.
There are a few simple things to take into account when projecting your fuel cost this holiday season:
- The estimated number of miles you anticipate transporting freight. A year-over-year projection can be used as a good gauge.
- An average price per gallon for diesel fuel. This will vary based on your state and locality.
- Approximately 10% – 20% of expenditure for unforeseen expenses.
Tip #5: Expected PTO From Company Drivers/Owner Operators
Having full availability of manpower for the holiday season is crucial for revenue generation. While the holiday season is the busiest, it’s also when many employees seek time off. Thanksgiving and Christmas are two of the biggest holidays to wrap up the year. Although some people may be traveling in-between and as result in need of additional time off. In order to meet demand and be able to capitalize on anticipated revenue, spend some time identifying employee availability.
- Review your company calendar for the months of November-December 2022.
- Take inventory of expected days off for employees and company drivers.
- Compare manpower availability against projected loads.
- Make necessary adjustments to accommodate the holiday season demand.
The holiday season is exciting. Full of cheer and joy. Family and gatherings. Feasts, laughs, and lots of travel. One might think of The Griswolds when the holiday season rolls around every year. It’s hard not to and all are in good spirits. Ensuring that your trucking company is adequately prepared for this year’s holiday season will be beneficial in many ways. It will help you operate smoother, earn the highest revenue potential, and eliminate any unnecessary mishaps.
Seasoned truck drivers are definitely in demand. We at Sugar Creek Transportation are always looking for experienced, friendly, and family-oriented drivers to join our team. We need your help!
Are you a truck driver looking for a company that will not treat you like a number? Do you want to be a part of a family instead of a company that treats you like a notch on the belt? Do you have at least two years of driving experience? We are always looking for self-motivated, driven, and energetic people to join our family.