One of the many challenges faced by haulage companies is finding suitable loads to transport. Load boards have been developed as a way to overcome the problem of matching customers and haulage companies. They are usually online platforms, accessible via a website or mobile app, where haulage companies can post available loads, and truckers and brokers interested in those loads can correspond with them.
The pros of using load boards
There are several advantages to using load boards.
Firstly, they can be a great way of building up your client base in the long term. They provide an opportunity to market your company and services to thousands of other truckers and brokers – and if they need haulage work done, they might choose to use you.
Secondly, load boards can be convenient for both parties involved. It means that finding shipping work is easier for haulers. For example, those that use Shiply do not have to spend as much time looking for shipping work. Recruiting drivers is easier for brokers, too; loads are available at the click of a button rather than having to wait for drivers to contact them all the time.
The cons of using load boards
However, there are some problems with using load boards. They are not completely reliable. There have been numerous cases where importers and brokers haven’t updated the load board once the job has been allocated to a haulage company.
Although it is possible to use load boards to find loads, the process of identifying suitable ones can be time-consuming. In some cases, the truckers and brokers looking for loads are so specific that it means that you must find an exact match for every requirement – meaning a lot of work for you will go to waste.
How do you overcome the negative aspects of load boards
Not all load boards are created equal. Some allow brokers to list truck loads for free. The downside of this is that the information can go out of date quickly as there isn’t an incentive for the client to update the board. Selecting a load board that charges for listing cargo can go a long way to ensuring you have the most up-to-date information.
To win a load on a board, truckers bid for the work. This can put downward pressure on the price of moving the items. This can make some load boards less profitable. However, a full truck is more profitable and safer to drive than an empty vehicle.
The bottom line: should you rely on load boards for work?
Load boards can be a good option for haulage companies and brokers looking to find loads. However, you should use them with caution. It is important to keep up to date with the latest information on the boards to avoid any disappointment or confusion later down the line. If you can find some trucking jobs on your own, too, you will reduce the risk of being caught out by non-updating load boards.