In the United States of America, most truckers on the road are working for logistics and shipping companies. The lucky few, however, work as owner-operators. Owner-operators – as the name suggests – own their tractor units and take on jobs using load boards or by developing relationships with individual clients that commission haulage work. They are not beholden to the whims of large logistical companies and are largely responsible for their successes and failures. Here are some of the benefits of working as an owner-operator in the American trucking industry. Continue reading to learn more.
Increased Earning Potential
Owner-operators are completely in control of booking the truck loads that they carry. While shipping work completed at the behest of a larger company is completely dictated by bosses and, therefore, finite in terms of earnings, owner-operators can choose to take on extra work whenever they see fit. This often involves the carrying of return loads, meaning that the truck is never empty and always earning revenue for the driver.
Being Your Own Boss
Not everybody likes to work under a boss. One of the great advantages of being an owner-operator is that you are your own boss. You make the decisions. You dictate the schedule and the strategy. Owner-operator work is perfect for people that don’t want to bow down to outside authorities and want to work directly with clients to get jobs and keep customers. Being your own boss is not easy, by any means. Owner-operators are responsible for every aspect of running a business. They need to become used to filing their taxes, paying for truck maintenance and cultivating relationships with clients. Ultimately, an owner-operators success comes down to self-discipline and balance.
Freedom to Take Time Off
Working for a large trucking company involves working to your employer’s schedule. Owner-operators can work their jobs around their personal lives, choosing not to take on haulage jobs if they want to take time for themselves or their families. The freedom to dictate the amount of time taken off is one of the great benefits of being an owner-operator.
With that being said, owner-operators are also highly responsible for scheduling an adequate amount of work. Most people purchase their big rigs using finance plans or loans, which means that they are tied to earning a minimum amount every month if they want to keep up payments.
Self Reliance and Responsibility
Large trucking and distribution companies have, in recent years, displayed a shocking lack of trust in their drivers. Semi-truck drivers working for big companies have found themselves being increasingly monitored, filmed, and tested. While these measures are usually designed to keep company drivers safe and on time, they tend to infringe upon the freedoms truckers hold dear. Some truckers have bemoaned the devolving of their once-free lives into a somewhat Orwellian nightmare. To be an owner-operator is to be free of these often draconian feeling surveillances – to truck as our ancestors trucked.