Health is an absolutely key driver of future success and wellbeing, and this article from Dave McFarlane of Monarch Transport, who operates a network of courier vehicles in Glasgow, explains how a business life in the hayulage industry can bring tremendous benefits.
Starting up a haulage business in the UK involves a certain amount of risk, just like any other startup enterprise. The haulage industry is a highly competitive one, and there are some very large, well-established companies in the UK that dominate the haulage market. Even if you don’t intend to compete head-to-head with the large haulage companies, you’ll still need to have all your ducks in a row, and you’ll need to make a serious commitment to the business.
The first thing you’ll have to do is acquire a Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) or a Large Goods Vehicle (LGV) license. Once you have this in hand, you must also acquire an operator’s license, then pass a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) test. The haulage operator license is comprised of several legal documents, including bank statements that demonstrate you have the financial wherewithal to conduct business in the haulage industry. You can find out plenty more information at the Road Haulage Association website.
These bank statements must confirm that your finances are in good order, and that you are financially prepared to conduct business in haulage. Since your application will be passed on to the Ministry of Transport, these legal documents must be up to snuff before you will be granted a license to operate a haulage business.
Not to be overlooked is the fact that the capital cost for a haulage startup is fairly significant, so before even considering entry into the haulage industry, it would be best to have a good supply of capital on hand, or at least available to your new business.
There are several aspects of the haulage industry which present opportunities for interesting and rewarding careers. Obviously professional drivers are needed with the requisite skills for driving heavy vehicles, but that is by no means the only career available. Employment is also available for those having a background in logistics, i.e. managing all the details of transport from one place to another. Then too, there are the financial careers within the haulage industry, including account management and general accounting.
One of the fortunate aspects of the haulage industry is that it is heavily driven by competitive pricing. In effect, this means that even start up companies can gain a foothold in the marketplace by offering very competitive prices, and then following through with good service. Once a foothold has been gained, a startup haulage company will probably have opportunities to direct-call potential clients and start building their own customer base.
Regulations in the haulage profession
The UK haulage industry is one that is regulated fairly heavily by various government agencies. These rules and regulations change relatively often, meaning that any haulage company must play close attention to directives which govern industry issues such as truck maintenance, vehicle weights, road usage, and tachograph laws.
There are several ways to stay abreast of these constantly changing regulations, one of which is to either belong to the Road Haulage Association, or to at least regularly consult for any new directives. It also helps to have friends and associates already in the business who can supply information about new regulations, or clarify new directives which may be unclear. In this same area of rules and regulations is the requirement to have insurance covering the vehicles themselves and the cost of all goods being transported.
The haulage lifestyle
For people involved in the haulage industry in the UK, the lifestyle can be a very challenging one. For office workers and those primarily concerned with logistics, there is little difference compared to office workers in other industries. However, for the drivers of large good vehicles or heavy good vehicles, the lifestyle can be quite challenging.
Throughout the past several years, there has been a growing shortage of drivers in the UK, because fewer and fewer young people are attracted to the profession. Truck driving often involves long, tiresome shifts, and sitting for hours at a time while driving is not conducive to good health. Only now are driver wages beginning to rise, because the demand for qualified drivers continues to grow, and the need for haulage has never gone away.
Rewards of a haulage career
The potential rewards for setting up a haulage company in the UK can be very significant. Since the industry is a large and pervasive one, the flow of capital creates numerous opportunities for companies to prosper and build thriving businesses. It is an industry that provides a very valuable service and is in great demand throughout the UK, all of which contributes to a business climate where huge profits can be made by very committed and very hard-working companies.
Startup companies which conduct their business in an ethical manner, with great attention to professionalism, and which demonstrate a high degree of fiscal responsibility, have a very good chance of success in the UK haulage industry.