Best Trucking Opportunities And Companies
Once truck drivers have earned a CDL license, they wonder which driving opportunities offer the best career choice. They might ponder whether it is better to drive for an established trucking company. Another option is buying their own truck and working as an entrepreneurial owner-operator.
Becoming An Owner-OperatorThere are things that are crucial to remember if one makes the decision to become an owner-operator. First, the minute a person signs the paperwork of a financing agreement or the title to a truck, they stop being only a truck driver. They become a business person, an entrepreneur and an independent contractor. Any decisions made from that point forward must be made with this in mind.
The point of view of an owner-operator is different from that of a basic driver. As a business owner, they must now be aware of things like potential profit and loss and business expenses that include upkeep of the vehicle, which can sometimes become very expensive. They must be able to make decisions accordingly.
It's recommended that drivers have a minimum of two years truck driving experience before considering purchasing and operating their own vehicle independently. Other crucial things to consider are:
- Bills for business, personal and household expenses keep coming in every month,
whether or not there has been enough work for that month and whether or not the
business made a profit.
- A person going into business for themselves should have enough money set aside for
emergency purposes, including living expenses, before deciding to buy a truck.
Generally, they should have about three months worth of funds.
- Think about possibilities of things like needing to make major repairs on a truck
shortly after the warranty is up. It's tempting to think it cannot or will not happen,
but it can and does. What if the truck needs repairs and the owner is responsible for
most of the bill?
Best Trucks To BuyOnce a person takes that leap and makes a decision to become an independent contractor, they need to look for the best truck for their needs. Things like whether to buy new or used should be considered. It is always best to find the best truck possible, for the most affordable price. Other things to consider are the quality of the truck's transmission, its mechanical history and how well it has performed in the past. Buying a truck is a huge decision and one not to be made lightly.
Some of the best makes of trucks include:
- Mack - Many claim that Mack makes excellent vehicles. There are drawbacks to Mack trucks,
however. Parts needed for Mack trucks are for Mack brand only. They are more expensive
for that reason. Repairs are also likely to be more expensive.
- Freightliner - Often touted as a good truck for beginners, Freightliner's are known to
be solid and to perform well.
- International - Reviews are mixed. Some say not to buy an International, others say to
buy cautiously and to have it checked out thoroughly by a mechanic before purchasing.
- Kenworth - A highly rated truck that is reported to be reliable and durable.
- Peterbilt - Rated well and considered to be a solid choice for most uses.
The choice of a truck depends largely on personal preference and on finances available. Like with any important decision, it's imperative to do research into the type of truck being considered. It will be a long term investment and one that a person wants to be happy with.
Driving For A CompanyThe other option drivers have is to work for an established company as a driver. For those who are unable or unwilling to take on the financial and other responsibilities for running their own business, choosing a great trucking company to work for is a fantastic option. There are fewer worries and sometimes benefits may be better for drivers employed by established trucking companies.
Truck driving jobs in today's economy are plentiful. As long as goods need to be moved between places, driving jobs will probably be available for many years to come. Skills and abilities of drivers are best used by working for a company that truly values its drivers. Drivers are wise to choose a company with a reputation for excellence when it comes to the treatment of their drivers.
Five Of The Best Trucking CompaniesOne of the best trucking companies to work for is Schneider, based in Wisconsin. With attractive features like bonuses for newly graduated drivers, sign on bonuses for individual and team drivers and a company philosophy that places value on drivers, Schneider has become a popular choice. Many drivers earn over $70,000 per year with Schneider.
Werner is another good trucking company. With a driver based focus, they have about 25,000 drivers in the United States and Canada. Werner is known for attractive driver bonuses, flexible scheduling and for using some of the most technologically advanced equipment available in trucking today.
A fantastic company for drivers with past military experience is Ryder. The company sees value in hiring military veterans both for the company and for veterans. Ryder has been awarded as one of the Most Valuable Employers for the military. Their policies help the company to be more attractive to the best drivers. Ryder now has about 23,000 people in its work force.
If you like high paying jobs, J.B. Hunt is well-known as a good place to work for both owner operators and for company drivers. They offer great benefits, including reduced rates for health insurance, prescription, dental and vision insurance. They are also known for having local and regional driving positions available. J.B. Hunt has over 400 facilities, employing over 14,500 people.
Con-Way employs over 28,500 people in over 20 countries. Drivers interested in working for a large company find great opportunities with Con-Way. Based out of Michigan, Con-Way offers good benefits. They pay drivers about $52,500 per year, with attractive sign-on bonuses for new drivers.