Nobody is going to haul freight for free. Nobody can afford to. There are simply too many costs, but some shippers seem to expect us to by making late trucking invoice payments.

Late trucking invoice payments have long been a real issue for independent owner operator truckers. We run small businesses for the purpose of making money. When shippers slow pay or no pay, it’s not just our pocket that takes the hit. It’s our businesses. It’s our family. It’s the people we pay to help us run our trucking company.

For those jerks out there who slow pay because they can, well, we can choose not to drive for them again. But maybe we should take a look at our own trucking invoice program to see if we can head off the late pay before they start.

Get the Paperwork in Order Before You Bill

Last year, I hired a new company to mow my mother’s yard. Not only new to me – they just bought out a previous landscaping company. I’m always willing to give a new company a shot.

Their billing practices were a mess. And that’s being nice about it. It took them months to finally figure out how they were going to bill their clients. Once they had the software package in place, things worked a lot smoother. Until winter.

We asked them to plow two driveways over the winter if the accumulated snow fall was over 2 inches. I asked several times for a contract based on the proposals they emailed me. We never got the contracts and the winter of 2023 must have been the mildest in Ohio history. But who was dumping salt on my driveway? And why wasn’t my mother’s sidewalk getting cleared? By the time April rolled around, we still hadn’t gotten a bill for the snow removal and it was time to sign up for the next mowing season.

TruckingOffice ELD protects your data

Learn from Experience

No contract? No payments until they verified all the work they claimed to have done. And when they told us that they’d been putting extra salt down for the senior citizen and billing $65 per drop – we told them they’d been salting my drive, not my mom’s.

I don’t know how they managed to stay in business. Their billing practices were biting them, not helping them.

When you have a late pay invoice, you can learn a few things for yourself and about your customer.

1- Are your processes working for you?

    Getting all the paperwork – the signatures on the BOL, the fuel receipts, toll receipts, whatever you expect to be reimbursed for – together for the bill is the #1 thing to do before you bill. Some trucking companies still use the envelope method. Send the driver out with an envelope with the routing and dispatch information and collect soggy fuel bills that fell into puddles or wait for the EZ Pass charges to show up on the VISA. Not exactly efficient. That lost BOL can destroy your entire payment.

    Get the paperwork organized – yeah, I know, I’m preaching to the choir. But you know what makes it better? Using a software package the allows you to photograph that BOL or collect a signature on a tablet. A system that knows the routes, and one that tracks miles per state to be sure that every mile is properly billed (and paid IFTA and IRP) to the penny.

    2. Are your bills going where they need to go?

    Making sure that you’ve got the right billing address is a common problem. For some large companies, the billing address isn’t the same as the delivery address. On top of that, you may be dealing with a broker. They have their own systems and if your bill has one wrong letter in the email address, getting it to the right person is impossible.

    Get the details right – right from the start. When the job is settled, entering the data into a computerized trucking management software program will keep all those details in place – including the differences between the delivery address and the billing address. If you use a trucking software and an ELD that are linked together, those details are easily checked and updated when necessary.

    Late Trucking Invoice Payments Reports

    Let’s face it, once a bill is sent, sometimes it’s tough to remember it. Losing track of an unpaid invoice is easy. If you don’t have a good system to review payments received, you’ll never know who hasn’t paid up – when you run out of money for your IFTA payment or your insurance bill.

    Tracking late pays isn’t fun, but it must be done.

    With TruckingOffice PRO, that task is easy. There’s a report that shows unpaid invoices. Press that button and you’ve got a clear picture of who still owes you money and how much. Sometimes it’s as simple as sending another invoice. Other times, not so much. But at least you’re on top of it. You know who to follow up with to get that late trucking invoice paid.

    TruckingOffice ELD is FMCSA approved

    TruckingOffice PRO and TruckingOffice ELD

    Using an integrated system allows an independent owner operator to have the same benefits that big trucking companies have in expensive software solutions. TruckingOffice offers the best options for the solo trucker. We’ve got an affordable trucking management software that handles everything. TruckingOffice PRO makes your life easier and managing your business smoother by helping you handle your tasks better and faster:

    Combined with the TruckingOffice ELD, you’ve got everything you need to build a successful trucking business – even from the cab of your truck.

    Contact us today to learn how to get your late trucking invoices paid with TruckingOffice PRO!

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