Being a truck dispatcher (also known as a freight dispatcher) may be an exciting career, but it doesn’t happen overnight. You must consider everything from negotiating contracts and locating and working with carriers to how to use a load board and create an effective website.
In this article, I’ll show you how to become a truck driver dispatcher and provide some helpful hints on running a successful truck dispatch business.
What Does a Truck Dispatcher Do?
A truck dispatcher is the central communications hub for a fleet of trucks, coordinating the efforts of drivers, load planners, and customers to ensure that freight is moved efficiently and on time. The truck dispatcher is responsible for maintaining contact with drivers, dispatching loads, tracking shipments, and troubleshooting any possible problems.
The truck dispatcher must have a thorough understanding of the transportation industry and strong communication and organizational skills. In addition, the truck dispatcher must be able to work independently and make decisions quickly in a fast-paced environment.
Freight brokers, trucking companies, and third-party logistics providers employ truck dispatchers. Some dispatchers work from home, while others work in an office environment.
Becoming a Truck Dispatcher
You can take a few different paths to become a truck dispatcher. Some people start working in the trucking industry in other capacities, such as drivers or customer service representatives, and then move into dispatch. Others may have experience in the logistics or transportation industries, which can help them become a truck dispatcher.
There are also a few truck dispatcher training programs available, which can give you the skills and knowledge you need to be successful in this career. These programs typically last four to six weeks and cover load planning, freight broker management, carrier relations, and dispatch software.
The best way to learn how to become a truck dispatcher is on the job, working alongside an experienced dispatcher. This will allow you to see firsthand how the job is done and learn the ropes.
Running a Successful Truck Dispatch Business
If you understand truck dispatching and how you want your business to run, follow these steps to become an independent truck dispatcher:
Step One: Register Your Business
The first step to starting your own truck dispatcher business is simple – come up with a name and register it. Keep the name short for easy learning, and ensure it directly leads customers to understand your company’s services. Including “independent dispatch” or “dispatching services” allows you to be easily found online and sets clear expectations for those who engage with your brand. Trucking and logistics are broad terms that don’t give much specific information about what potential clients can expect from working with you, so avoid these naming conventions if possible.
You’ll need to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) with the IRS and choose your company structure after you’ve chosen a name for your firm. A sole proprietorship, limited liability company (LLC), corporation, or partnership are all possibilities. I usually advise choosing an LLC or Inc corporate structure.
You should also prepare draft versions of some of the contracts that will be important to your company’s operations. The service agreement, for example, is where you describe what you will charge and what services you will offer for that amount. The dispatcher-carrier agreement ensures that the carrier’s insurance will protect you from responsibility if something goes wrong with the freight you agreed on. Having written copies of these agreements allows you to start working for your partners sooner.
Step Two: Establish an Online Presence
Creating an effective internet presence and marketing plan necessitates the development of a website as well as the creation of accounts on popular social media sites. Pick a web address that incorporates your company name while being brief and easy to remember. You may check to see whether any domains with your desired keyword are available at GoDaddy, then register there if they aren’t.
After you register your domain name, create a Facebook page with the same title for Facebook and Instagram ads. If you’re interested, starting a YouTube channel is also an option to show off your knowledge and expertise to subscribers.
If you want potential partners to take your business seriously, then your website needs to be up to par. Here are the five things you need on your site for it to make conversions:
- The homepage: The minute a user sees your website, they should know the purpose of your business and what you offer. Some people believe that a welcome message at the top of the page will make users scroll to learn more, but if your key message isn’t straightforward, visitors may leave without fully understanding your company. Your homepage should be magnetic and urge viewers to want to learn additional information about you.
- The sales pitch: By the end of your sales pitch, you should have stoked your prospective partner’s excitement about doing business with you by going into detail about what exactly you do and how you stand out from competitors.
- The likable CEO: If you’re the head of a company, your face must be visible on the website. This allows potential partners to create a connection with you and builds rapport. In trucking, references are essential, and having a relatable CEO shown on your website creates more opportunities for future relationships.
- The scarcity: This is the “FOMO” (fear of missing out) component of your website, in a way. You want to ensure that your potential partner understands they will lose something if they leave your website. This also ties back to your messaging and emphasizes how you differ from the competition.
- The social proof: You should have some testimonials on your website. You may not have any carriers who can recommend you if you’re a new independent truck dispatcher just starting. That’s fine! Even if all you can get are personal recommendations from individuals in the sector, whether friends, mentors, or teachers, that’s better than nothing and will help you appear more trustworthy to a potential partner.
Step Three: Get a Load Board Subscription
To be a successful truck dispatcher, you must find quality loads for your carriers. The best way to do that is by subscribing to a high-quality load board where you’ll access thousands of freight listings from all over the country. While there are some free load boards available, they won’t provide the same quality or quantity of listings as a paid subscription board.
If you’re serious about your dispatcher business, the Melton load board is the best investment you can make. With hundreds of thousands of new loads posted every working day, Melton Technologies is the leader in truck dispatchers’ load boards. With Melton’s comprehensive listings, you’ll be able to discover anything to fit your carriers’ demands at all times.
Step Four: Start Making Connections
Making connections is key to real success in the trucking industry, and load boards are a great way to find loads for carriers. An excellent place to start is with an online directory like Hosrizongo Directory, which makes it easy to find any partners you could want. Horizongo Directory is included free with a Horizongo load board subscription and provides contact information so you can reach out to potential partners and start making connections.
How to Find Carriers and Loads as Truck Dispatchers?
Finding suitable carriers and loads as truck dispatcher is not always accessible. Here are five tips to help you get started:
- Use a load board: A load board is a great way to find carriers and loads. You can search for loads by location, commodity, and other criteria and then reach out to the poster to see if they need a carrier.
- Get connected: The trucking industry is all about connections. Get to know as many people as possible, and let them know what you do. You never know when someone might have a lead on a load or carrier for you.
- Use social media: Social media is a great way to connect with potential carriers and loads. Use hashtags to find relevant posts, and reach out to people looking for help.
- Stay organized: Keep track of the carriers and loads you’re working on within a spreadsheet or CRM system. This will help you keep track of who you’ve contacted and what their status is.
- Follow-up: Don’t be afraid to follow up with carriers and loads. If you don’t hear back from someone, reach out again in a few days. Persistence is vital in the trucking industry.
Following these tips will help you find success as a truck dispatcher. Always be networking and building relationships, and you’ll be sure to find the carriers and loads you need.
How Do I Become a Successful Trucking Dispatcher?
A truck dispatcher is a professional responsible for arranging the transportation of goods by coordinating the activities of truck drivers. A dispatcher may work for a trucking company or be an independent contractor. As a dispatcher, you will use your knowledge of the trucking industry to help your company save time and money by finding the most efficient routes for your drivers.
Running a successful truck dispatch business is difficult, but if you follow the methods outlined above, you should be able to locate partners that can support your company’s growth. Finally, I’d like to offer my two most important suggestions for becoming a great truck dispatcher.
Tip One: Find a Mentor
Finding a mentor who can help you learn the ropes and avoid making costly mistakes is essential in any industry. The trucking industry is no different. If you know someone already successful as a truck dispatcher, reach out to them and ask for advice. They may be willing to help you get started or even take you on as a protégé.
Tip Two: Invest in Your Education
The trucking industry is constantly changing, and it’s essential to stay up-to-date on the latest regulations and trends. One way to do this is to invest in your education by taking trucking dispatcher courses. These courses will teach you everything you need to know about the industry, from load planning to driver management. Enrolling in a course is a great way to ensure you’re always ahead of the curve.
By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to becoming a successful truck dispatcher. Remember to find a mentor, invest in your education, and build strong relationships with your carrier partners. You can succeed in the trucking business with hard work and dedication.
Truck dispatching is a vital job in the trucking industry, and it can be a rewarding career for those who are organized, detail-oriented, and good at problem-solving. If you’re thinking of becoming a truck dispatcher, use the tips above to get started on the right foot. And always remember to continue learning and networking to be the best dispatcher you can be.