Get the info you need on becoming an owner-operator

October 2020

Land Line Staff

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For drivers thinking about becoming owner-operators, it has never been easier or more cost-effective to get the information you need than it will be this fall.

OOIDA is bringing back its three-day Truck to Success course designed to inform professional drivers thinking about becoming owner-operators.

The top goal at OOIDA is to help drivers be more successful and more profitable in their business, and that is the driving force for this course, said OOIDA Executive Vice President Lewie Pugh. Statistics show that most small businesses fail in the first three years, he said.

“Truck to Success is a chance to arm yourself with the knowledge you will need to apply to your business to become successful and not be a statistic,” Pugh said.

The course is planned for

Oct. 26-28, and it will be offered via Zoom web conferencing. That means the cost will be less for each participant. It also means that social distancing because of the coronavirus will not be a problem.

OOIDA first presented its Truck to Success course in 2019. This fall’s course includes the same amount of instruction and information, if not more, as the original in-person course. The curriculum covers a variety of topics following a logical transition from a company driver to an independent contractor.

Course curriculum

The Truck to Success course will provide advice on the following topics and more.

BUSINESS PLANS help a motor carrier lay out goals and keep on track. A business plan addresses marketing, financial and operational aspects of the business, including knowing the costs and finding ways to reduce or control them.

DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTING becomes more complex when a driver becomes an owner-operator. The course will cover necessary record keeping, required tests, conducting required random testing, and dealing with the FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, which is new this year.

LEASES can tell you a lot about carriers, and owner-operators need to read the fine print. A bad contract is a sign that it’s not a good carrier. Get started with an overview of leasing regulations, clarification of verbiage, and what to watch for in a contract.

GETTING YOUR OWN AUTHORITY sounds pretty straightforward, but with state and federal governments involved it is more complicated than it sounds. There are numbers, permits and a process to figure out, and this course and OOIDA staff are ready to help.

There are TAX CONSEQUENCES and opportunities for owner-operators. Get the low-down on requirements and strategies from nationally recognized tax expert Barry Fowler, owner of TruckerTaxTools.com.

FINANCING can make or break a business. Get advice on credit applications, bureaus and scores. Also, get a handle on a variety of financing options.

BUYING RIGHT is important to the bottom line. Get advice on buying new or used, making sure you spec your truck right, and about financing options from Ethan Nicholson, chief commercial officer for TruckTractorTrailer.com, an online marketplace for commercial vehicles.

LOADBOARDS can help you get the jobs to keep your truck on the road and making money. Learn how to make them work for you from DAT Solutions, which operates the largest freight exchange for spot market freight.

Registering for Truck to Success

Tuition will be $250, which is about half the in-person course cost last year, and there won’t be travel expenses.

There are a limited number of logins available for the course. If more than one person wants to view the course from one computer with one login, they are welcome to do so. If a guest needs their own login, there is an additional guest charge of $150.

For more information and to register, go to OOIDA.com/online-education/truck-to-success/. LL