For as long as people have cars, there will always be a need for tow trucks which is why starting a towing business is a good idea. But, like other businesses, the towing industry is not smooth sailing and is riddled with some challenges. If you’re not careful or informed, your business dream could all result in disappointment and losses.
Here are a couple of tips for successfully running a tow truck business.
- Always prioritize safety
The number one rule you should follow and one that you should lead as owner and operator of the business is to always put safety first. In doing so, you avoid accidents and expensive claims against your business. Not only are you ensuring the safety of your own people, but you also lower the cost of insurance on your business, especially on your trucks.
Some tips in ensuring safety are always maintained include:
- Regularly holding safety meetings with safety officers together with other staff and drivers.
- Holding regular training not just on safety but on the safe operation of all equipment and trucks.
- Setting up pre-deployment inspection procedure.
- Establishing strategies in order to eliminate distracted driving in the business.
- Establishing safety policies within the workplace.
It’s crucial that there is a safety policy in place to ensure that all the staff and drivers are keeping safe when on the job. Make sure these policies are well communicated among all the employees and that they know where these can be accessed.
- Consider the expenses
In any business, there are going to be expenses, some less than others. The towing business is no exception. In fact, it might even have more expenses especially when you consider the types of equipment and the number of staff you’ll need to hire to run the business smoothly.
In the tow truck business, getting the trucks is only half of the battle. Although there are used trucks you can purchase for as little as $10,000, you might have to spend a little more than that for the cost of maintenance. If your budget allows, you might want to consider getting a brand new truck which will allow you to save on maintenance costs for a few years.
You also have to factor in other expenses such as rent and employee wages. Add to that, the cost of insurance, fuel cost, repair and maintenance, damages, and mortgage payments. These are only some of the costs you will surely encounter within the first couple of years when running a tow truck company.
- Hiring and training drivers
Tow truck companies need to prepare themselves when it comes to hiring drivers for their trucks. It’s important, as owners, that you scrutinize your tow truck drivers as they will serve as the face of the company. You have to be clear on the criteria for a tow truck driver. They could include characters like:
- good personality
- people skills
- good hygiene and cleanliness
Keep in mind that for the most part, it is the drivers that customers will interact with the most. They need to be presentable, professional, and competent.
It’s not enough to get the best people working for your company. You also need to have them trained when it comes to how to operate the equipment and the truck. Training could include how to use the various tools and equipment as well as how to maintain safety in the workplace and to minimize hazards. Even those who already have experience as tow truck drivers could benefit from a refresher course about safety.
- Grow the business slowly
It can be very tempting to immediately want to grow your business but that is a mistake many uninformed business owners have committed in the past. The towing business is not something for the light-hearted. It faces a lot of challenges almost on a constant basis and owners should keep up on all that needs to be done.
One of the bigger challenges for towing companies is when they are faced with tough jobs such as a rollover or multi-car collisions. Tow truck business owners must be ready for tough jobs and to learn to expect the unexpected.
Trying to grow a towing business, you will most likely encounter a lot of problems and challenges. It is going to take a little while before you will see any returns on your investments. Still, many business owners, like that of Fife wrecker service, recommend that new owners stick with it. If they are patient and they avoid growing the business too quickly, they will begin to see the fruits of their labors.
- Promoting your business
Once you’ve established your business, bought all your equipment, and hired all your staff and crew, it’s time the general public knows what you’re offering.
In order for a business to grow, you need customers and one way to get their attention is by promoting the business. In this modern age where people are very dependent on the internet, most towing businesses have a dedicated website where they post updates, rates, and other information for customers to check out. It’s important that all the contact details of the business listed on the site are accurate and up-to-date.
Another method is through the local listing. This can be done through print or online. You can hand out flyers and pin up posters around town to let people know about your business. You can sign up for business listings so when people within the area look for your services, you show up in the results.
Lastly, since drivers are the ones that interact with customers, they need to be presentable and professional at all times. Emphasize the need for cleanliness and personal hygiene. And they should be wearing a uniform that clearly shows the company name.
The tow truck industry isn’t the easiest industry to enter but it can be an incredibly rewarding line of work. If you like meeting and helping different people, you will find a lot to like about running a tow truck business.