Can You Work Part-Time as a Truck Dispatcher?
Today, we will try to answer whether you can do truck dispatching part-time.
If you don't feel like reading the entire post, I'm going to go ahead and tell you that dispatching trucks part-time is not impossible, but it is quite challenging. Allow me to explain why.
Time Constraints of Load-Booking
As you may recall, the main duty of an independent truck dispatcher is to assist motor carrier trucking companies with the load-booking process. Most of the loads are posted on load boards between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM. That doesn't mean that there won't be any load options if you log in at 9:00 PM, but there may be no new postings in your area.
Of those postings, you may not get an answer from the brokers you find, or your message may go to an answering service where you are told that until the broker comes in at eight o'clock, there's nothing they can do to assist you with booking the load.
Also, many of your clients will prefer to pick up and deliver loads in the first half of the day. This makes it easier for them and, to some extent, easier for you if something goes wrong with the load you already booked.
Client Accessibility Is a Necessity
Let's take a look at the following example.
Imagine that you have one client with one truck. You wake up in the morning and log into the load boards at 8:00 AM. Now, you search and call on some loads. By 8:30, you find something, and by nine o'clock, the paperwork is complete, the driver is dispatched, and you are done. At this point, you could technically go about your business and say that you worked one hour a day and made a certain amount of money.
However, let's imagine that by noon, you receive a phone call from your client, who tells you that the truck has arrived at the pickup location. The driver has been told that this particular load is not ready and will not go out until the day after tomorrow. So, your client wants you to find a new load for this truck.
This means that you need to get back to the load boards, set up a new search, see what options are available, call some brokers, and book another load for your client. In this situation, let’s say you are a stay-at-home parent. You can just set aside the things you were doing, get back on the computer, and start looking for another load for your client. And it's probably going to be fine.
However, imagine that you went to work at a restaurant (as an example). Now, you may have difficulty just leaving to look for another load. If you don't do that, though, your client will miss out on the entire day of work. They probably won’t be very happy with you, and you’ll be fired sooner or later.
The point of this example is that you may not spend too much time actually booking the loads, but you must be accessible to your clients for an extended period.
Set Realistic Expectations
As you start dispatching more trucks, the demands on your time will increase. For example, if you are dispatching five trucks, it will take some time to find loads for all of them. If you start at eight in the morning, you might be done by 11:00 or noon.
Once you are done, you no longer have to sit in front of the computer and look at various load options. However, you must be able to return to your duty as a truck dispatcher should things go wrong with the load for one of your clients.
Now, I hope this post wasn't too discouraging for you, but I want you to have realistic expectations and be prepared for what's in store for you once you start developing your truck dispatching business.
© By Roman Shmundyak June 2022
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