Benefits of being an O/O at a company VS completely freebird?

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by RussianBearTruckeR, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. RussianBearTruckeR

    RussianBearTruckeR Medium Load Member

    Jul 9, 2018
    Jacksonville, FL
    I see companies seeking out O/O's offering:
    Up To 70%+ of line haul
    100% Fuel Surcharge
    Guaranteed miles, fixed CPM (around $1-$1.50)
    ability to lease trailers/trucks, etc...

    I'm curious, aside from the guarantee of getting loads & having a dispatcher finding the loads & dealing with/negotiating w/brokers - what are (if any) the other benefits of doing this VS being out on your own finding your own loads (LoadBoards, Brokers, Direct w/shipper if you're lucky)?

    Do O/O's that don't want to deal w/brokers & find loads & just want to drive attracted to this? What am I not seeing here? There anything else aside from that free truck wash I'm missing?
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  3. ebill45

    ebill45 Light Load Member

    Oct 11, 2011
    dalton ga
    No benefits only more headache unless your a mobile mechanic accountant and you run under your own authority. If all the stars align right you might make 5k more a year than a company driver after expenses. You got pay your own self employment tax ie social security and Medicaid and health insurance which if your employed your employer pays half your social security and Medicaid. That’s adding 5k to 7500 to ur tax burden. Most of us do it so we can run 80 mph down the road and have our name on the door. Not for more money
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2019
  4. Midnight_tim

    Midnight_tim Light Load Member

    Dec 19, 2018
    Completely Freebird is great if you want a lot of mental stimulation, especially with Math.
    The advantage to leasing onto an Authority is you can get out of a fair amount of the back office functions and can basically turn down anything you don't want to do (read as: can afford to turn down) and focus a bit more of driving but you are losing a % of the LH right off the bat but if you think of that as what you'd be paying to have an assistant you will most likely despise after a few weeks but will think maybe if you flirt with her enough you'll be giving her loads instead. Simplifying it of course.
    Being a company driver is just bragging that you can drive a big truck but want none of the management responsibility but live with the mindset that you can probably the company better than the people who run it.

    That's obviously a simplistic view not covering all the minute details.
  5. BrandonCDLdriver

    BrandonCDLdriver Road Train Member

    Sep 1, 2017
    I had an OO with our company tell me not to become an OO for the money, do it for the freedom.
  6. Humblepie

    Humblepie Pontificator

    Dec 25, 2018
    That’s just sad that you are only making 5k more than a company driver.
    stwik, Rideandrepair, PE_T and 6 others Thank this.
  7. mikesouthbend2

    mikesouthbend2 Bobtail Member

    Sep 10, 2011
    I think you listed some of the “benefits” like not looking for a load but also I believe if you sign onto a company they pay your license plate and take out so much a week and give you a fuel card then just reduce your settlement. Basically just like you get what you pay for you get paid by the amount of work and investment you put into your company. So in my eyes someone paying my plate and charging me a fee or finding me a load that I probably don’t want anyway isn’t a benefit it’s exactly why I have my own authority. I guess at the end of the day you have to decide how much time and money of your own you want to invest and this should dictate to you if you are company driver, owner operator leased to a giant company, owner operator leased to a very small outfit, or just put your name on the door and have no one to blame but yourself. Well I guess you can still blame Obama, Trump, and of course the brokers! Sorry I wrote so much but it all starts with a persons mentality in my opinion and that should ultimately determine what is beneficial and best for them. Good luck to all!
  8. MidWest_MacDaddy

    MidWest_MacDaddy Road Train Member

    Feb 21, 2015
    South Carolina
    Good Question... I’m a Company Driver and had been looking at these other two options but not ready to jump... may never be... but I’m interested in the responses that you get from others.

    Thanks for asking!!!
    RussianBearTruckeR Thanks this.
  9. Gdog66223

    Gdog66223 Road Train Member

    Dec 30, 2017
    Coal Town
    I have to say I run my own authority and I really enjoy the freedom. I wouldn't trade it for nothing. If I wanna go home then I go home. No woman nagging in my ear, no dispatcher, nobody to tell me anything...

    Now as far as the comparison well leasing onto someone using their numbers is ok, but you can only pull freight from their board so kinda limits you. You also have to adhere to their rules if they have any. Good thing is leasing onto someone they usually pay for everything except fuel so that is a good advantage.

    Disadvantages of having your own authority is IT CAN be very hard to get freight with a new DOT number because some brokers want to see like 6 months active. Also when you first obtain your authority it can be very costly like upwards of $10,000 startup cost for all the documents and insurance and plates

    All in all I took the risk of it and I have to say I'm happy I did.
  10. Bentrail

    Bentrail Bobtail Member

    Jun 3, 2011
    London, KY
    I've done both. And in a good freight market you do much better with your own authority. But in a soft market (like we are in now) it's probably better to have someone else paying for your plates and insurance. Starting out a new carrier can pay between $12,000 and $17,000 a year in insurance until you establish some clean loss run records. Don't forget that you pay for all repairs, so even if you have 2 great back to back months, if your turbo takes a dump or you need tires you are back to square one. A company driver will eat a lot of BS and be speed governed and engine de-rated...but at the end of the day, we should all be making about $1500 to $2500 a week..if your not, then you are home too much or you are driving a big orange truck or something even "Swifter"
  11. Bentrail

    Bentrail Bobtail Member

    Jun 3, 2011
    London, KY
    Most O/O or single truck carriers will gross 3x to 5x a week those amounts. But deduct fuel, tires, tolls, repairs, truck payments and (insurance, taxes, plates, IFTA if you a carrier) and it all comes out in the wash.
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