Updated: Sep 22
You are just as much a business owner as a truck driver when you have your own trucking authority. There is a lot more to manage now that you didn't have to manage before as a driver. Whether or not your trucking company will survive will be determined by your ability to manage your new firm. Let's take a look at some of the primary obligations that come with running your own over-the-road trucking firm as an owner-operator.
FINANCIALS & EXPENSES
As the owner of an over-the-road trucking company, you must pay attention to both the money coming in and the money going out. To ensure that your firm isn't losing money, it's critical to keep detailed records of all business spending. If your spending exceeds your income, you'll need to adjust the way you run your firm if you want to keep it under your control. M7 TAX can assist you in budgeting by assisting you in developing a profitable strategy and delivering monthly profit and loss statements to keep you on track.
As an owner-operator, you'll have to pay for fuel, insurance, food and drink, and your truck. There will also be periodic one-time and unplanned expenses for which you should budget. To assist you to manage these unexpected expenses, we recommend that you keep an emergency savings account.
You will improve your ability to manage both expected and unexpected spending over time. Once you have an understanding of how much you spend each month, it will be easier for you to come up with ways to save money on these expenses by operating more efficiently. You will be able to truly manage your costs at this stage.
It will be crucial to manage the clients with whom you operate. Nobody will tell you what you need to haul and where you need to deliver it as an owner-operator with your own over-the-road trucking company. It will be your responsibility to maintain a steady flow of work in order to keep your business profitable. It's critical for you to cultivate new consumer relationships and keep them alive through hard work and clear communication.
An online load board is a useful tool for finding new business. You can choose from a number of different subscription packages, both free and premium. When selecting a load board, consider your budget as well as the reputation of the load board you intend to employ.
A load board on the internet is a useful tool for locating new business. You can choose from a number of different free and paid subscription alternatives. When selecting a load board, consider your budget and the load board's reputation.
FUEL CONSUMPTION MANAGEMENT
As previously stated, one of your largest expenses as an owner-operator is fuel. Fuel, on the other hand, is an item that you have greater control over than your other significant expenses. Although you have no control over the price of gasoline, you do have control over how much you use.
The below are a few simple strategies to enhance your fuel efficiency:
Monitor Tire Pressure
Manage Cruise RPM
These are simple improvements you can do right now to help you better manage your fuel. Keep track of your fuel costs before and after you implement a few of these suggestions to see how much your bill drops. You don't have to make many sacrifices to save money on fuel when compared to other expenses like truck payments and insurance.
MANAGE YOUR HEALTH
When running an over-the-road trucking firm, it's easy to disregard your health. You are the most valuable asset in your trucking company, and if you are unable to drive, your firm will be unable to make a profit.
Sitting for long periods of time, eating junk food, and not getting enough sleep can contribute to a slew of health issues. There are many ways to boost your health, fortunately:
Get out of the vehicle whenever you're stopped for the day to move about and get some exercise.
Instead of buying inexpensive fast meals, consider cooking for yourself.
To improve your lung and heart health, quit smoking.
To avoid becoming dehydrated, drink plenty of water.
To avoid becoming drowsy behind the wheel, get enough sleep the night before.
You don't get sick days as an owner-operator. Every day you are not on the road is a day you are not earning money. Of course, there will be days when you are unable to drive due to illness, which is beyond your control. Limit your time off the road to days when you are absolutely unable to drive.
The way taxes are paid is one of the most significant differences between a corporate driver and an owner-operator. As a company driver, your employer deducts taxes from your salary automatically. When you run your own trucking firm, you are responsible for calculating and paying your taxes on a quarterly basis.
It's critical that you record an accurate profit and loss account for your business so that you can pay the correct amount of taxes each quarter. M7 TAX suggests that you set aside 25% to 30% of your weekly net income for estimated tax payments every quarter. Failure to make quarterly tax payments will result in penalties, which will raise the amount you must pay in the end. If you don't keep track of your taxes, your firm will go behind, and getting caught up will become increasingly difficult.
Owner-operators must also complete different (and frequently more complicated) tax forms than company drivers. The biggest distinctions between being a company driver and owning your own trucking firm include paying taxes on a quarterly basis and filing a different type of tax return.
WE ARE HERE TO HELP
M7 TAX is here to help you with the management of your trucking company. M7 TAX has more than 25 years of experience in the trucking business and has assisted many owner-operators to establish a solid financial status and helped save millions in tax returns. Accounting, bookkeeping, and tax preparation are just a few of the services we provide particularly for truck drivers. We also provide business consulting. Give us a call at 800-771-8244 or schedule a free 30 min consultation by clicking HERE if you'd like to learn more about M7 TAX services or get started right away.