Business advice for handling escalating fuel costs


Whether you have a fleet of trucks and other vehicles or your daily driver to the auction, dealership or office gets pretty thirsty for fuel after only a couple hundred miles, the rising cost of gasoline and diesel is impacting just about everyone.

Relay Payments acknowledged that some industry experts say that only a recession will reverse the rise in the cost of diesel.

So to help, the digital payment solutions provider for the transportation, logistics and supply chain industries offered some suggestions for transportation and trucking companies as well as advice that might help individuals, too.

“It has to start with the basic blocking and tackling of trucking,” Relay executive vice president Meghann Erhart said. “Understand your market. Run as efficiently as possible. Minimize your empty miles. And pay strict attention to your cash-flow.”

Cash flow management — understanding and staying on top of the in-flow of revenue received and the out-flow of expenses needing to be paid — is essential to the success of any trucking business, according to Erhart.

“Being aware of the ins and outs of your cash flow includes paying attention to the payment terms of each load — knowing when you are going to get your money,” she said. “And it’s about knowing your expenses. Being aware of when your insurance payment is due; when your taxes are due.

“Knowing and planning for these big upcoming bills. You budget for those known expenses, and include some reserve for unplanned expenses, like a repair to get your truck back running. Not every dollar that comes in can be spent without setting aside what you’re going to need to keep the business going,” Erhart continued.

Rising costs are particularly hard on owner operators. Half of single-truck and small fleet owners are considering job changes in the next six-to-twelve months, according to a new survey by

Some of those considering a change will close their business and go to work driving for a larger fleet. But many of those who choose to stick it out will succeed through hard work, determination and a strict adherence to good business practices, Erhart said.

“Some very large fleets started out as an owner with one truck,” she said. “And just about every one of them has had to overcome some degree of adversity to succeed. This is an industry full of very determined individuals.”

Relay can help owner operators manage their cash flow and reduce expenses, with solutions to: 

—Budget for and keep track of expenses

—Reduce idle time with fast transactions at the shipping dock

—Use a wrapped receipt for a zero-cost lumper payment

—Receive a rebate on every fuel transaction so you don’t have to go out of route looking for a particular brand of fuel

—Get reimbursed for lumper expenses with real-time receipts

—Send invoices out quickly and accurately

“We know the cost of doing business is increasing,” Erhart said. “In addition to providing solutions to save our customers money, Relay is holding our prices stable to support the industry through a difficult time.”

Relay Payments is one of Fast Company’s 50 Most Innovative Companies for 2022, ranked sixth in finance.

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Source : AutoFinanceNews