(BPT) - The future of the trucking industry — especially small-business trucking — is at a crossroads. Just as the industry starts to look beyond the turbulence of the pandemic, fuel prices grow as a potential recession looms. Thankfully, truckers are resilient and they overcome challenges every day to keep the world moving. Now they’re also getting a leg up from technology to help offset rising costs.
Trucking and the economy
Truckers have a difficult, yet essential job. The economy is dependent on a strong transportation system and every trucking business — from massive fleets to independent drivers — makes a difference.
Trucks move roughly 72.2% of the nation's freight by weight, according to the American Trucking Association. Trucking supports the economy and employment in a big way, with 7.99 million people (according to 2021 data) in jobs that relate to trucking activity, excluding the self-employed. Of those, there are an estimated 3.49 million truck drivers.
From 2020 to 2030, truck drivers are expected to see a job growth rate of 6%, according to Zippia reporting. This growth rate means there will be approximately 231,000 truck-driving jobs available each year. As trucking organizations clamor to attract and retain drivers, one challenge is impacting small-business trucking companies in particular: payroll.
Trucking logistics are complex. Running a successful business requires a lot of planning to move freight where it needs to go and when. On top of that, there's the important human element to trucking. People need to track their time, report their hours, get paid and receive proper year-end tax documentation.
Large organizations have finance and HR departments to handle payroll and other related processes, but for smaller businesses, it often falls on the shoulders of someone who wears many different hats. Payroll in itself can be time-consuming and complex, especially for people who may be drivers themselves.
As small-business owners navigate the path forward, the demand for efficient technologies that cut costs and save time has never been greater. This is especially important for payroll, since getting employees paid correctly and quickly is essential to attracting and retaining talent. Innovations like chat-based technologies now allow small-business owners to get payroll tasks done, without having to slow down or be tied to a desk.
One company striving to achieve this and much more with innovative solutions is ADP. They recently developed a payroll app called Roll. Backed by longstanding payroll expertise and data security, Roll by ADP offers small-business owners the ability to run payroll anywhere, anytime, quickly and compliantly — with no training or previous payroll experience needed.
How does it work? Robert Masiero, vice president of innovation at ADP, explains:
"Through an artificial intelligence-backed conversational interface, busy entrepreneurs can effortlessly complete payroll in less than a minute on their device by simply chatting, 'Run my payroll.' The do-it-yourself app guides users through the process, letting them know what to do and when, while eliminating time-consuming tasks," he said.
The result is payroll without friction: zero time spent in training, less than a minute doing payroll, reminders that keep business owners up-to-date, and the ability for them to do their payroll on any device, wherever they are, which is particularly important to small-business trucking owners who may themselves need to be on the road.
Masiero shared some of Roll’s most popular features:
Pay by Mile – Pay for the miles your truckers have driven with one of the most popular pay types in the trucking industry.
Ultra-Fast Direct Deposit – Get your drivers paid fast with next-day direct deposit. Need it even faster? Roll has same-day payment options, too.
Unlimited Payroll & Tax Filing – Pay any type of employee (full-time, part-time, W-2 and 1099 contractors) in all 50 states. Payroll taxes are automatically calculated, withheld and filed, too.
Employee Self-Service – Employees anywhere in the country can access and manage their pay info anytime by logging into their own version of the app, which is free for them to use.
"While trucking has been an essential part of the U.S. economy since the dawn of the automobile, modern technology is changing the industry like never before. For small-business trucking owners, apps like Roll by ADP are a game-changer, helping save time and lower costs. This ultimately benefits everyone," said Masiero.