New Demand Brings New Startups Striving for a Fleet EDGE
Although the economy slowed in January, the first quarter of 2019 shows that on the whole the American economy continues to grow. That means that the trucking and transportation industry will persevere in its efforts to keep up with high volume, high demand, and a critical need for drivers. The American Trucking Association (ATA) suggests that the volume of goods hauled by the trucking industry is expected to grow at an average rate of 3% per year over the next several years (beginning in 2017), increasing by 3.4% this year and steady until 2023. Growth in the economy is also pushing the numbers higher. A report filed in 2018 finds that trucking industry revenues have topped $700 billion.
The demand, particularly for drivers, has become the topic of the day, the subject of many online conversations and even a series reported on National Public Radio (NPR). It is an issue requiring attention from fleets across the nation. Competition for drivers is leading trucking companies to try to gain their own fleet edge wherever they can to attract and keep drivers. Small companies are challenged with financing but with help from leading fleet factoring companies such as Fleet One Factoring, they are finding the solutions they need to give them the fleet edge. While that edge may include considerable pay increases and robust benefits packages, it also includes tangible tools, from complex telematics to mobile apps and fleet cards. Fleet One Factoring offers a fleet card meant to give companies an edge — the Fleet One EDGE Card. Fleet cards like the EDGE are trending in the industry where products are concerned – but let’s have a look at the bigger picture to put the need for products like the EDGE card into context.
Trends in Revenue, Employment, and Freight Moved
According to ATA president and CEO Chris Spear, trucking is the driving force behind our economy. Safe, reliable, and efficient motor carriers enable businesses throughout the supply chain to maintain lean inventories, thereby saving the economy billions of dollars each year. Trends in the trucking industry influence business in almost every sector.
Trucking is a critical part of the economy and the supply chain. Trends allows policymakers and business leaders to see just how big that impact is while debating key issues like trade, infrastructure investment, workforce development, and tax policy. — ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello
Top 5 Trends reported this year incite an even louder call to action.
1. Trucks moved 10.77 billion tons of freight, 70.2% of all domestic freight tonnage
2. The industry generated $700.1 billion in annual revenue in 2017, 79.3% of the nation’s freight bill
3. The industry moved 69.1% of all trade between the U.S. and Mexico, and 57.7% of Canada-U.S. trade
4. Roughly 7.7 million people were employed in jobs related to trucking activity, including 3.5 million drivers
5. Of those 3.5 million drivers, 1.7 million were heavy and tractor-trailer drivers. Minorities account for 40.6% of all drivers and 6.2% of truck drivers are women.
These trends make it clear that along with the need for drivers comes the need for more and bigger fleets. Luckily the demand is being answered, and there is more competition than ever. Investors are flocking to new startups and developing strategies to capture a fleet’s edge over the rest.
As with any business today, success is not based on a single tool or even a few. Business strategies are smart and comprehensive and include a variety of systems, software, and tools to help with profitability as well as ways to minimize expenses and maximize productivity. Because fuel is the second highest expense in operations behind salaries, fleets have made it a priority to focus on controlling those costs.
Fleet startups are particularly cautious, and many are turning to fleet factoring for help in accessing cash flow along with guidance on more efficient strategies. Those strategies always include the efficiencies provided in the company’s fleet card, and in many cases that card is the Fleet One Edge. It is called the EDGE for a reason – here is why.
- Largest nationwide fuel discount network at more than 3,600 sites – with an average savings of 12 cents per gallon
- No fuel transaction fees in network
- Universal acceptance at more than 8,000 truck stops nationwide
- Nationwide discounts on major tire brands – with an average savings of $40 per tire
- Thousands in additional savings on wireless, equipment, maintenance, parts, breakdown, hotels, and more
- Credit to fund operations and financing solutions to help with growth
As a new owner/operator in the over-the-road trucking industry, your immediate goal is probably growth. By implementing factoring strategies and by harnessing the power of the Fleet One EDGE card, companies are meeting those goals faster than ever. The EDGE card provides the credit to fund operations and financing solutions to help a startup grow. The EDGE card can help to control costs, monitor and manage driver behavior, and mitigate fraudulent purchasing.
So while the demand for trucking continues to rise, with new companies answering the call, there are also companies like Fleet One Factoring helping to support those companies with finance opportunities and the much sought-after edge over the competition, the Fleet One Edge Card.