The Holidays are among us, and with that comes the annual auto transport seasonality. It’s the time car haulers and shippers have all come to expect where business begins to slow down, but that doesn’t mean auto transport isn’t still making moves.
As 2023 is right round the corner, so is an industry hungry for recovery. And with an improvement in the market, so comes a big boost in the auto transport industry. A business’ performance during their peak season is entirely dependent on how they leverage their downtime.
Have big goals to meet in 2023? Here are a few ways you can leverage auto transport seasonality to your benefit for the busy days to come.
With a little less action disrupting the day-to-day, now is the time to check in with your operation. If you’re fortunate enough to have an accounting or finance partner, then bring them in for a health update on your books. If not, then you can leverage this time to take a more detailed look at your expenses and cash flow.
“It may be time consuming, but the deeper you dig, the more accurate your view and the better insights you’ll receive.”
To get started, choose a timeframe. This could be the second half of the year, an annual review, or on a quarterly basis. For reference, you may want to compare your previous quarterly or annual records to your current records to examine year-over-year or month-to-month change.
Review every expense, even the ones that seem small. And do a detailed review of the entirety of your cash flow. It may be time consuming, but the deeper you dig, the more accurate your view and the better insights you’ll receive.
Not only will this process help you have a more accurate view of how your business is doing, but it will also give you a better idea of your business needs in the new year.
Now that you have a detailed view of your business’ financial performance and needs, now you can zone in on planning for the new year.
To get started, define what your goals are for next year. This could be around revenue, growing your customer base, building your Shipper or Carrier network, tapping into a different segment within auto transport, increasing the number of vehicles moved, or any other key metrics you choose to measure your business performance against.
“Once you’ve clearly stated and defined your goals, now you plan the tactics to achieve those goals and by when you want them to be accomplished.”
No matter the goal you choose, Susan Ward of The Balance SMB recommends making your goals “SMART” – specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.
Once you’ve clearly stated and defined your goals, now you plan the tactics to achieve those goals and by when you want them to be accomplished. This will give yourself and your team something to chase everyday with a clear idea of their objectives.
Making the move to digitizing your business is always intimidating, but only becoming more necessary. There are two things to consider about going digital: your business will improve substantially and don’t do it during peak season.
An MIT Sloan Management study reported that businesses who had invested in a digital ecosystem had a 32% higher revenue increase. Often, businesses might be reluctant to invest in a digital system due to lack of time or concern over breaking. For auto transport, there are digital platforms you can adapt like a transportation management system (TMS) or an electronic proof of delivery (ePOD).
“An MIT Sloan Management study reported that businesses who had invested in a digital ecosystem had a 32% higher revenue increase.”
Consider the areas you may need digitization for your auto transport business and identify partners who won’t leave you high and dry or who have the most up-to-date system. For example, with Super Dispatch, you can sign up for the all-inclusive platform to get a TMS, load board, ePOD/eBOL, and additional system integrations. All of this with someone helping you with any migration or set up needs.
Investing in a digital platform while you aren’t inundated with loads or inventory will ensure a quicker and easier setup practice just in time for you to be able to do more with less effort before peak season.
If you are a fleet manager or an owner-operator, now is the perfect time to check in on your trucks and get to any overdue repairs or maintenance needs.
If your truck is in good condition, then it’s still worth the time to check in with your rig and even it’s most minor mechanical aspects.
“Leverage the slower holiday weeks when your trucks can afford to stay down to invest in more substantial repairs or work on your more scheduled regular maintenance.”
United Truck Driving School suggests that, “the most common mechanical issues trucks face: steering component problems, brake problems, under inflated tires, and improper wheel hub assemblies.” Now would be great to check in on some of these expected recurring truck issues and make sure they are operating properly.
Leverage the slower holiday weeks when your trucks can afford to stay down to invest in more substantial repairs or work on your more scheduled regular maintenance.
Slowed business is never fun, but it’s something we have all come to expect around the holiday season in auto transport. Seasonality happens, but what happens is what you do with it. Invest this time into yourself and your team and you’ll get ahead of your completion while improving your operation.Published on November 24, 2020
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