If you’ve been working in the trucking industry for a while and thoroughly enjoy it, you may be considering starting your own fleet company. The trucking industry may be full of companies already, but because of high customer demand, there are always opportunities for more fleets. But before you consider starting your own fleet company, there are a few important steps to take.

Establish a business plan

First things first, you need to create a basic business plan. A business plan needs to include a lot of various details — from basic market analysis to a sales strategy to management plans. While you can always add more details, later on, you should start by compiling as much information as possible. You should break down what the business will do, who the market for your business is, and even your expected income. A business plan is needed to show banks, partnering companies, and even customers in order to get the business started. So before you do anything else, come up with a comprehensive business plan.

Invest in the right tools

Aside from the obvious tools and equipment a trucking company needs, like the semi-trucks, there are a few other tools that you’ll need to invest in. For example, you’ll want to invest in a US fleet tracking software in order to track and record the location of your trucks and equipment. This is crucial if you want to ensure your drivers are taking the right routes and that the cargo is being delivered on time. Additionally, you may want to invest in other software that will help you manage your business, like employee management software, inventory tracking, and even data organization.

Another important tool you’ll need is a CRM call center software. While managing employees and internal data are important, providing a great customer service experience is important, too. Fortunately, the right software can help you do this. Investing in an omnichannel call center software can help your company connect multiple channels and manage customer communication. When customers try to contact your company, whether it’s through email, website chat, or a phone call, they should be connected with a representative in a timely manner. Then, said representative should have the information needed to answer their questions and address any concerns. You can even utilize AI and bot solutions to assist customers. Investing in a great call center software can help you provide the best customer service experience possible, ultimately growing your business in the process.

Get your trucks and drivers

Choosing the trucks you’ll use is one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make when starting your own fleet company. This is not a decision that should be made lightly—you should do thorough research and compare options before making a decision. You should start by thinking about what kind of cargo you plan to move, which will dictate which truck engines you can consider. Additionally, consider whether you need a flatbed trailer, refrigerator trailers, or another type of trailer option.

Along with the right trucks, you also need the right drivers. You should screen all potential drivers, check references, and ensure they have the necessary experience. Additionally, you should decide whether you want to hire drivers as employees or contractors—depending on your truck situation, hiring contractors who already have their own truck can be beneficial to start with.

Know the legal requirements

All businesses have legal guidelines they need to follow — but trucking companies often have even more legal requirements they need to keep in mind. From CDL licenses to having the right registration to filing taxes properly, there are a lot of different laws and regulations that need to be followed. It may be a good idea to meet with a lawyer, an accountant, and even other fleet company owners to ensure you’re following all of the laws. All legal matters should be taken care of before your company is officially in action.

Owning and operating your own fleet company can be a great business move. But it’s important to keep these tips in mind to ensure you get started on the right foot.