The Business Of Independent Service Provider Contracting

eTruckBiz Just Got Better - Unveiling The New Platform

Posted by Jeff Walczak on Nov 15, 2020 1:22:11 PM

For more than 8 years, we’ve been building products & services to help CSP’s transform the way they approach running their businesses.

Recently, the FXG model itself has been transforming in unprecedented ways. For most CSP’s , the days of being a “hands-on” operator are gone, and the need to provide leadership & management through systems, processes and people are quickly being implemented. The days where you or your BC’s could “jump in a truck” to fix things are gone.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Planning, Timekeeping, Bookeeping, Intelligence, Business Metrics, ISP, FedEx Ground, Business, Negotiation, model, Metrics, Profit, leadership, safety, coaching, Scheduling, Dynamic Route Optimization

Profitability Profile - Preston Wengert

Posted by Ben Weil on Feb 3, 2020 4:36:12 PM

HOW A COMMUNITY COLLEGE DROPOUT FOUND ENTREPRENEURIAL SUCCESS

You think your market conditions are tough, what about Colorado? According to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, the Denver area's average weekly wages are $1,242. Think it's easy to find drivers? The BLS also lists the area unemployment rate at 2.4%. Way lower than the U.S. average.

What made a young guy from out of town who knew nothing about the logistics industry think that he could buy a Ground business to support his growing family? Sure he's smart, but he's so young.

"There's no selling, no advertising, no collecting money from past due accounts. I'm not saying it's easy, but it beats a lot of other options out there," Preston Wengert says.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Results, Management, ISP, FedEx Ground, contractor, Profit

Business Coaching Benefits CSP's

Posted by Ben Weil on Jan 19, 2020 2:43:03 PM

An Extra Set of Eyes

Dustin Franz bought an RPS route twenty years ago in Pasco, WA. Today, he's a successful FXG contractor with multiple routes. He's traveled an interesting path to profitability.

Buying a route was his first time owning a business. Much of how he learned to deliver packages came from his own experiences plus talking to contractors in his terminal.

Others taught him what they had learned from their own mistakes, and they really couldn't teach him how to be more profitable any faster. It was no fault of their own. They hadn't been trained themselves.

Dustin performed some online research and determined he needed outside assistance.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Results, Management, ISP, FedEx Ground, contractor, Profit, coaching

Profitability Profile - Tracy Taylor

Posted by Ben Weil on Jan 6, 2020 1:15:00 PM


YOU CAN'T LET DRIVERS RUN YOUR BUSINESS

Business owners (CSP's) are generally likable. Drivers want to work for them. People enjoy being on their team. Nothing wrong with that. It's a good thing.

However, it's a problem when CSP's are too nice. Tracy Taylor learned that lesson early in his career as a Contractor. 

"I had 12 employees, 15 trucks and two operations hundreds of miles apart. My people needed me to make tough decisions instead of letting them manage themselves," he recalls.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Results, Management, ISP, FedEx Ground, contractor, Profit

What If Someone Buys FDX?

Posted by Jeff Walczak on Jan 2, 2020 1:20:10 PM

Is FedEx about to be purchased?

The answer is probably not...maybe.

Truth is we'll never know for sure until it happens. But don't lose sleep over it because it's not under your control.

However, it's good business to think about and reasonably prepare for change. Focus on things you can control.

Let's take a look at what a sale of FDX might look like for CSP's.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Outlook, FedEx, Ground, ISP, FedEx Ground, Business, Contract, Selling, contractor, Purchase

Profitability Profile - Steve Ellis

Posted by Ben Weil on Dec 8, 2019 10:15:44 AM


RETAINING EMPLOYEES IN TIGHT LABOR MARKETS

Steve Ellis has been a contractor for almost twenty years. Many business owners who've been operating that long think their processes work because they've "always done it this way."

However, Steve's openness to studying and changing his processes make his operations exceptionally successful in a state with some of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Results, Management, ISP, FedEx Ground, contractor, Profit

Profitability Profile - Marena Markel

Posted by Ben Weil on Sep 2, 2019 1:07:00 PM


THE PERILS OF BUSINESS OWNERSHIP

Marena and Ralph Markel bought their first FedEx Ground route in 2005.

Of course, they were inexperienced owners, but they were committed to their future and each other. Like many couples who work together, each spouse brought different skills and strengths to the business.

After experiencing significant growth, the pair were overwhelmed by the responsibilities of leading a large team of commercial drivers including:

  • Scheduling
  • Payroll
  • Compliance
  • Training

Would the couple remain happily in business?

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Business Results, Management, ISP, FedEx Ground, contractor, Profit

Who Decides How Much You Earn?

Posted by Ben Weil on Jul 14, 2019 2:43:41 PM

It's a simple question with a simple answer. If you're a FedEx CSP, you may think - of course FedEx decides how much I'll earn because they decide what to pay for my services.

But it's not the right answer.

Focus instead on two key words, "decides" and "earn."

FedEx offers, or negotiates, estimated fixed and variable revenues, but they don't decide how much of that you'll keep.

You will make decisions during the course of the contract  determining how much you'll earn.

Don't confuse income with earnings.
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Topics: Business Structure, Business Outlook, FedEx, Training, Ground, FedEx Ground, Negotiation, Profit

Keeping Score and Making Money

Posted by Ben Weil on Jul 7, 2019 10:40:00 AM

Wayne Gretsky, Isiah Thomas, Magic Johnson, and Pete Rose. Each was phenomenally successful at scoring goals, points, or runs in their respective sports. Coaching others to do the same? Not so successful.

Bill Belichick, Pat Riley, Bobby Cox and Tony La Russa. Polar opposites to the previous four athletes.

"What's your point?" you ask.

Business people, like athletes, don't have to be great players to be great coaches and vice versa. However, great coaches can bring out the best in others.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Outlook, FedEx, Training, Ground, FedEx Ground, Negotiation, Profit

3 Steps to Prepare for 7-Day Service

Posted by Ben Weil on Jun 16, 2019 9:00:00 AM

FedEx recently announced that seven-day service will be starting in 2020. This means big changes for FXG Contractors.

"Eight Days a Week" is a popular song written by Paul McCartney and John Lennon in the 1960's about love. According to McCartney, the title was inspired not by love, but by work.

He has been quoted as saying when he asked his chauffeur how he was doing, the chauffeur replied, "Oh working hard, working eight days a week." (Wikipedia, May 22, 2019).

You and your drivers probably feel the same about FedEx' recent announcement to move FXG to a seven-day work week.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Outlook, ISP Negotiation, FedEx Ground, Negotiation

Should Contractors Band Together To "Work It Out"?

Posted by Jeff Walczak on Nov 5, 2017 2:50:39 PM

Take a look around.

Do you see the number of contractors around you dwindling?

How many contractors do you see today, vs. how many there used to be 2, 5 and 10 years ago.

It's plain to see the number of contractors is shrinking, while the number of trucks grows

This results in fewer, but larger operations.

Think this is a coincidence?

It's not.

As you seek answers from FXG on how you will achieve scale, contiguous service areas and overlap, you are being told you need to "work it out" with those around you. Well that's great, but how are you supposed to do so if you have limited resources?

There is a way, but you'll need to ask yourself some questions first.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, Management, Payroll, FedEx Ground, Business, Investment, model, Merge, Purchase

Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

Posted by Jeff Walczak on Dec 30, 2016 3:51:46 PM

Here we are at the end of another year.

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Results, FedEx, Business Metrics, Business, Investment, model, Metrics, Selling, contractor, Profit, vendor

A Contractor's Guide To The ISP Negotiation Process

Posted by Jeff Walczak on Dec 14, 2015 10:15:24 PM

The time has come to look at the ISP Negotiation process from the contractor perspective. 

First, let's go ahead and call it what it is: David v. Goliath, FBS vs. FCS, Large Cap vs. Small Cap. It's the tremendous resources of FXG vs. those of an individual contractor. I think we can all agree that from the ability to influence, FXG holds the cards.

But that doesn't mean, a contractor cannot conduct a meaningful, and even successful negotiation. It just means that in order to do so, the contractor needs to do some homework, and find some very special tools and help.

Well, now, finally, the tools, and help exist...

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Topics: Business Structure, Business Tools, ISP Negotiation, FedEx

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