Growing your small business from a mom and pop to an enterprise fleet is no easy task. With the right know-how combined with a robust enterprise fleet sales team, you’ll be able to scale your business successfully. A few of the components you’ll need when structuring your business is to prepare both business and personal finances, find the right talent, prepare for maintenance costs, get the right trucks, plan a business structure, and incorporate an enterprise fleet management software. These are some of the key steps to take when growing your small fleet into an enterprise fleet.
Tips to Grow Your Small Business into an Enterprise Fleet
Operating a bigger business means structurally changing the way you do things. It’s no longer enough to manage everything yourself or track your drivers manually.
Use an Enterprise Fleet Management Software
As your business grows, the operation elements will require more energy, time, money, and highly coordinated logistics. Enterprise fleet management software helps develop efficiency within your business, saving you both time and money. Using fleet management software enables you to improve your fleet’s safety, maximize vehicle fuel efficiency, automate fleet reports, optimize dispatching, enable space for additional jobs, boost customer satisfaction, and take advantage of insurance benefits. By simply reducing the biggest fuel wasters such as idling, speeding, and harsh accelerating or braking, you can save nearly $8,250 per vehicle.
Have an Enterprise Fleet Sales and Marketing Team
Acquiring new customers is one of the most crucial aspects of growing your business. Investing in new technology, hiring new drivers, and purchasing new trucks won’t be effective unless you increase your bottom line. You’ll need a team dedicated to acquiring new customers and building new business partnerships. This could mean sending your team to industry networking events, implementing a cold outreach process, and contacting business executives who run factories and warehouses. You’ll need to train your sales team on many intricacies, such as the quoting process, organizing leads, and sending contracts. You may need to hire a marketing company to help you create ads and get your business name out there. Then you’ll need a sales team in place to close qualified leads.
Know Your Credit Score and Acquire a Trucking Business Loan
It’s a common business practice to know your credit score. Acquiring a business loan can be a crucial step in growing your fleet. There could be many reasons that you may want to consider acquiring a trucking business loan. This includes expanding your fleet, updating technology, hiring more drivers, acquiring more inventory, and improving logistics.
Having a small fleet means you may have to turn down jobs, which can hurt your monthly or annual sales. With a business loan, you can expand your fleet, meaning you can take on more jobs and increase your revenue. In a competitive industry, you’ll need to position yourself as a reliable fleet enterprise company as early as possible.
Hire Truck Drivers
Unfortunately, good driving talent may be difficult to acquire. In 2018, there was a shortage of 60,800 truck drivers, and by 2028, the shortage is expected to rise to 160,000 drivers. This means you’ll need to hire drivers as soon as you can and do whatever possible to retain good employees. There are many costs associated with the hiring process, such as posting on paid job sites or hiring a recruiter to help you. You may also need to pay for licenses, insurance, training, personal equipment, union costs, staff uniforms, insurance, and other expenses. Although these costs are steep, the investment will pay off tenfold. Growing into an enterprise fleet means you can take on more jobs and increase revenue.
Determine if Owning or Leasing is the Best Option
When it’s time to replace your trucks or acquire new ones, you’ll need to determine whether to buy or lease your vehicles. Leasing has its advantages, such as getting different tax benefits and acquiring the latest models. However, you’ll need to stay within mileage limits and avoid damaging the vehicles. If you decide to purchase commercial trucks, you’ll gain total control. But you will have to upkeep your fleet and be responsible for maintenance. Having old or worn down vehicles can negatively impact the image of your brand. If your fleet is large enough to absorb these expenses, the best option is always to own the vehicle. If you’re struggling with financing, you can opt for a lease to own. This allows you to pay smaller lease payments so that you pay less upfront and take advantage of the tax benefits.
Find a Good Commercial Fleet Insurance
Commercial motor vehicle insurance can be quite a hefty cost. Depending on the number of vehicles you have, this can easily cost your fleet thousands of dollars per year.
One way to maintain low insurance premiums is to select which drivers you bring onboard carefully. Thoroughly check their driving records to see if they have been involved in any sort of vehicle accidents. A prospective driver who has been in many accidents could be a big liability to your company.
For further savings, it’s best to bundle your vehicles together in one fleet insurance policy so that you can receive bigger discounts on your premium. You may consider purchasing high liability coverage and roadside assistance to save you thousands of dollars in accident and repair costs in the event of a collision on the road. Enrolling in a commercial fleet insurance policy is a huge step in protecting yourself from your enterprise fleet’s potential risks.
Owning a commercial fleet business can be a gold mine for savvy business owners. The need for goods transportation is high, and the construction industry is building houses at a rapid pace, generating the demand for home service businesses. Apply these strategies to help grow your small business into a reliable enterprise fleet company that will be around for a long time.