Becoming A Government Contractor
The U.S. government is the world’s largest purchaser of goods and services. By law, the government is required to provide opportunities for small businesses. The government wants to contract with small trucking businesses, particularly those owned by veterans and minorities.
To get started as a government contractor, follow these steps:
Best Box Truck Load Boards For Owner Operators
Load boards are another method that connects shippers directly to truckers. These boards make it very convenient to find freight loads by having multiple listings to choose from and most of the shipment details are spelled out. A quick Google search will uncover online load boards with free or paid options to choose from. The trick is finding good box truck load boards that meet your needs so youre not wasting time. The best load board for owner operators and trucking fleets of all sizes will offer free trials, have mobile apps so you can search for loads to haul on the go and send you notifications so you never miss a high-paying load. Make sure you receive notifications from the load board for load searches. You dont want to miss any load posts.
Grants For Truck Drivers
Grants for truck drivers may be available through the Pell grant program. Federal Pell grants are awarded to students attending an accredited institution who demonstrate extreme financial need. You may not have to pay to attend truck-driving school. Some employers provide on-the-job training so you can earn while you learn.
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Tips For Becoming Actively Involved In Subcontracting
Small Business Administration’s Subcontracting Network and Subcontracting Opportunities Directory
The Small Business Administration hosts the Subcontracting Network website, Sub-Net, where prime contractors may post subcontracting opportunities. These opportunities are often reserved for small business and may include solicitations or other announcements, including sources sought notices for teaming as partners or subcontractors on future contracts. Sub-Net allows small business to search for opportunities by SIC code, NAICS code, generic description, or solicitation number. SBA also has a Subcontracting Opportunities Directory which lists, by state, primes with a subcontracting plan.
Government Grants For Starting A Trucking Business
The federal government funds a number of programs that may help individuals secure funding for companies. As with any federal or state program, grants for truck drivers and owners of trucking businesses are not paid to individuals directly but rather to assistance programs. There are several government programs, including grants, that truck company’s can look into taking advantage of for their business.
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Contract With A Dispatching Service
Dispatchers might manage your schedule directly or reach out to you when they receive a call for truck services. There are two ways to work with dispatchers: You can hire your own or use a dispatching service.
Hiring a dispatcher internally only makes sense if you operate multiple trucks under your authority, and you need someone to manage multiple drivers at once. If youre on your own, working with a dispatching service may make more sense.
Dispatching services connect you directly with shippers or brokers while also doing administrative work you may not have time for. Keep in mind that you have to pay for these services. Dispatchers might not always have steady work available for you either, so you might get more regular work being proactive on a load board as well.
The Government Is A Great Place To Source Trucking Contracts
Government departments and agencies use trucking services a lot. These contracts are lucrative too and will help small trucking businesses immensely.
One of the ways to get these contracts is by applying to these government services. The US Postal Service offers huge opportunities to companies like yours. However, youll need to find out if you qualify.
All you need to know can be found on its website. A detailed process on the steps to take as well as who to contact when applying for a trucking contract is all included.
What Are Government Contracts
They are legal agreements between a government agency and a contractor that obligates the government agency to pay for goods or services. Once the contract is awarded, the business must fulfill its part of the deal according to the terms of the agreement.
There are two types of government contracts:
Prime contracts are entered into between the government and a prime contractor. This is where the governments goods or services will be delivered and where it directs most of its oversight efforts.
Subcontracts are agreements between prime contractors and subcontractors who provide goods or services to fulfill their obligations under the prime contract.
Starting A Trucking Business: Obtain Clients
The trucking industry is a highly competitive, demanding business, and trucking business owners need to be proactive in finding customers. If you’re an owner, check online bidding sites for available accounts and contracts. A number of sites focus on contract bidding.
In many cases, the owner who offers the lowest bid lands a contract. Although it won’t result in a lot of profit, bidding low is usually best for startups. Other avenues for finding clients and contracts include placing classified ads.
Remember that no matter how great your fleet is, making your clients happy is very important. Satisfied clients often recommend quality trucking companies to people they know. This is why it’s vital to provide the best service you can during all phases of transport before, during, and after the job.
In addition, when clients receive excellent service, they’re much more likely to come back to you.
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Standard Tender Of Service
The GSA standard tender of service serves as the base document for the transportation of freight-all-kinds shipments by federal civilian agencies and other eligible organizations utilizing the services of GSA Freight Management branch.
The STOS is comprised of three parts:
Rate offers for the transportation of FAK shipments, solicited and accepted in accordance with the STOS, provides federal civilian agencies and other eligible organizations with the most economical and responsive transportation rates and services.
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Government Transportation Contract Factoring
If youre hauling government freight such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency loads or Department of Transportation loads, factoring ensures your trucking company will get paid faster.
Even if youre booking loads through a freight broker, payment for government loads will trickle in slower than your typical haul. Government contracts are slow-paying to start with. Plus, the broker must deal with the paperwork and documentation required by government agencies.
Demand is often high for disaster relief loads. Disaster recovery presents an opportunity to earn money and offer a helping hand during unfortunate events. Trucking services are desperately needed for disaster relief, but these hauls can easily strain your cash flow due to extra delays, longer waits to unload and additional challenges. If youre jumping into hauling for disaster relief efforts, consider working with a factoring company for FEMA loads or other government freight contracts.
Bonus Tip: Rent Out Your Dump Truck When Its Idle
Did you know that you can rent out your dump truck when you are not using it? Its a little known strategy, but it can be a terrific way to generate passive income from your dump truck when its sitting idle.
The process is simple. Just list your dump truck on rentalyard.com.
Note: they do have a monthly subscription fee, so it makes sense to do this only if you plan on renting it out enough to justify the cost.
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How To Get Started
The strategy you use to get started depends on your individual situation, time frames, and objectives. Here is a possible strategy as an example.
a) Use load boards to get started
Loads boards can be useful initially. They can help you get started and can help you fill any empty legs. Use load boards strategically and be careful of bidding too low for a load. Otherwise, you could end up making less than your cost-per mile. Your objective should be to use load boards while you build your contacts with reliable shippers and brokers. Eventually, you should transition most, if not all, of your work to direct shippers. Here is a useful resource with 40 free load boards.
b) Start looking for quality shippers
Most of your time should be spent looking for direct shippers. These shippers pay the highest per-mile rates. Ideally, you want to grow your business so that most of your revenues come from direct shippers. Building these relationships and getting shipping contracts takes time and effort. You must be persistent and cant give up easily. Spend most of your time building these relationships.
c) Look for reliable freight brokers
The right freight brokers can be a great source of loads and help you grow your business. There is one catch: you have to share the revenues with them, so you make less than working with direct shippers.
d) Consider looking for government contracts
How To Get Freight Contracts For Owner Operators
Although it takes a little more work at the start, many freight companies find their owner operator trucking contracts through prospecting. Do some research on what shippers are in your area, what they ship and where. Then you make contact, either by cold calling the person in charge of shipping or knocking on their doors. Introduce yourself. Set up a meeting. Ask questions about their trucking needs and be prepared to check back in with them. You never know, new opportunities might come up at a later date. Prospecting for trucker loads can be a bit of a numbers game, so keep at it.
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Build A Relationship With Freight Brokers
One of the best ways to get more contracts is by building a network. The larger your network, the more contract referrals youre likely to get. One good way to build a network with brokers and shippers is to use tools like Book It Now from Truckstop.com.
Book It Now lets you find loads with trusted brokers in your network and book those loads quickly. Using this feature also gives you a lot of upfront information, including rates, load details, origins, and destinations.
An Overview On Finding Trucking Contracts
New owner-operators often find their biggest challenge is finding loads. Small trucking company owners can have a difficult time with this, and not being unable to find enough loads is why many small companies go out of business.
Constantly looking for loads, however, isn’t the best strategy. Hunting for loads is a short-term mentality that won’t build your business much. Instead of looking for loads, look for clients and long-term relationships. All clients with merchandise need to move that merchandise somehow.
Trucking company owners must learn how to outbid their competition. It’s imperative to know your costs in order to win a trucking contract that’s beneficial to your bottom line.
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Advertise Through Social Media
Google My Business is a great way to give your business an online presence, but its just the beginning.
If you are willing to spend the money, you can advertise your services on social media platforms like Facebook. Yes, you will have to pay for ads, but you can really target people who are looking for the types of services that you are offering.
To learn more about Facebook advertising, check out this article on the topic.
Us Department Of Transportation Announces $10 Million To Help Minority
Contact: Tel.: 366-0660
WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Transportations Federal Highway Administration today announced $10 million in funding from the Fiscal Year 2021 Disadvantaged Business Enterprise/Supportive Services program to help eligible small businesses compete for federal highway contracts in 45 states, as well as Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
With these funds, state transportation departments will help minority- and women-owned businesses across the country create jobs and better compete for resources for transportation projects nationwide, said Deputy Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack.
President Bidens Bipartisan Infrastructure Law continues funding for the DBE/SS program for Fiscal Years 2022 through 2026. The funding is provided to State DOTs, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Territories for the purpose of administering programs that provide training and assistance to DBEs to improve their ability to compete on federally assisted contracts.
A DBE is a for-profit, small business owned and controlled by minorities, women or other socially and economically disadvantaged individuals or, in the case of a corporation, one in which 51 percent of the stock is owned by one or more such individuals. More information about DBE eligibility can be found at .
Funding amounts for Fiscal Year 2021 are as follows:
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Us Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration manages small business procurement for the federal government. Funding for trucking companies is negotiated by the SBA, which works with government departments to ensure that small businesses have opportunities to provide goods and services to the federal government.
Are Government Contracts Profitable
Whether its your companys first contract or youve been providing products and services to the federal government for years, one thing is certain: Government contracting can be very profitable.
Government contracting allows businesses to get paid for providing products and services that help the government meet its goals. The federal government allocated over 140 billion dollars to contracts with small businesses in 2020.
Government contracting gives you access to the worlds largest customer . It also can provide your business with stability, profitability, and growth opportunities you may not find in other markets.
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Source Directly From Local Shippers
Sourcing directly from shippers in your area isnt always possible, but it is an option. If you can form relationships with shippers, you wont have to split your profits with a broker or pay anyone else to find loads for you, reducing your operating expenses.
It can be challenging to find shippers who dont contract out consistent lanes with established carriers and companies. If possible, use your professional network to find opportunities with nearby shippers. You may have to bid against other drivers to get opportunities in some cases.
How Much Do Truck Owners Make Per Month In South Africa
In SA, truckers earn about R48,000 per year, according to Payscale. An hourly rate of 93 cents. It was estimated that the typical salary paid to truckers across SA was R10,100 or R4,960 loritudes in SA typically earns around R10,100 a month with the range from R4,960 to R15,800 . In addition to housing, transportation and other benefits, this salary is averaged.
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Factoring For Fema Loads
Trucking demand is high for months when a natural disaster occurs. Delivering loads for FEMA can be a little more challenging than normal. Depending on which state you are traveling to, some are better prepared than others.
Its important for truckers to be patient when delivering loads to these areas while waiting for instructions. Delivery sites are often crowded with other trucks trying to drop off supplies and sometimes it wont seem as if anyone knows the proper instructions.
Hauling loads for disaster relief will not only earn you a paycheck but will help out those in need during these difficult times.
Government agencies are slow-paying and even if youre working through a broker, payment for loads will still be slow. This is why invoice factoring is a great option for truckers looking for a boost in cash flow when working with government contractors.
Factoring government transportation contracts also guarantees a strong cash flow without any debt. It doesnt matter if you have bad credit history or are just starting out, factoring is flexible and tailored to your trucking businesses specific needs.
Bid On Government Contracts
You can obtain significant work for your dump truck business by bidding on government contracts. These contracts can be at the federal, state or local level and can range in scope and size from very large contracts to contracts that may only require one or two dump trucks .
So how do you get started?
You can search your states department of transportation website to check out potential bidding opportunities. If you happen to be a small business or are female or minority owned, you may enjoy certain advantages during the bidding process as compared to large, non-minority owned companies.
In addition, if you are a smaller operator, you can score government contracts by acting as a subcontractor to a large contractor who has been awarded the government contract. Its a convenient way to piggyback off the strength and reputation of a much larger and more established contractor.
The key, of course, is to establish good relationships with these types of larger contractors so theyll use you. You will need to demonstrate both solid pricing, reliability and flexibility to gain their trust. It might take some time until you can build up a good enough reputation to land these subcontracting gigs, so you will need to be patient, but the payoff can be worth it.
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