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What's stopping your haulage firm growing?

See what 74 other firms stated as their barriers to growth and expectations for 2022

12th July 2022

Zeus HGVs parked in a row

Written by

Brant Emery

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When you’re running your own business, it can be hard to see what you’re doing right and what others are doing. Zeus can help.

We conducted a survey of 74 British haulage firms earlier this year and can share some insights on their challenges and growth goals.

What are the biggest barriers to growth?

Since the study, fuel prices have become top news and a big factor on costs. But if we exclude this, then we can see the top challenges that bigger fleets and owner-operators said they face.

Medium-Large Fleets

Approximately 25% of the respondents (18) were Directors or owners of medium-large fleets (50+ trucks).

From the chart below, the biggest challenge at 75% is finding new, qualified, drivers. Only 25% said managing costs / overheads, but this was pre-fuel crisis.

Interestingly, later on we asked what their expectations were for growth this year and 50% expected a hard year ahead, 25% stated they will return to pre-pandemic levels, and 25% were unsure.


52 of the companies that answered were owner-operators (3-10 trucks) or owner-drivers (1-2 trucks). These were also the oldest respondents, 50% were aged 46+ and nearly 40% had worked in haulage for over 20 years. Interestingly, 16% said the main everyday challenge was ‘other drivers’ (seeing how people drive, we get this).

Unsurprisingly, finding new drivers was not the biggest barrier to growth, this was all focused on finding new customers, lanes and loads. The cost question will have changed since then obviously.

Looking at the year ahead, about 45% were positive, and close to 49% were more cautious: 25% expecting a very tough year ahead. This was before the fuel crisis which adversely affected smaller fleets.

How do they grow their business? See the chart below. Freight platforms are a new must-have, followed by existing methods of sub-contraction and finding new business.

Zeus is a freight platform for hauliers

Here at Zeus we know that owner-operators don’t always have the time to spend on business development and sales activities. That’s why Zeus is a useful tool for all smaller firms. We do the hunting for you and find freight that fits your fleet. Unlike other digital platforms we provide hauliers with both spot and contract work - ensuring everything goes through our platform, which makes it easy to manage, keeps it all mobile (via our Driver app), and gives you fast payments terms of 2 - 5 days.

In addition, our points-based loyalty program gives great rewards like up to 50% off Apollo & Vredestein premium truck tyres and prepaid service cards (for food or drinks at service stations).

Not already a Zeus haulier? Then sign up and see how we can help your firm grow!

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