Computer technology has greatly enhanced efficiency and productivity in the trucking industry. A recent advancement has altered the manner in which truckers utilize computers. In the past, software had to be installed in the owner/operator’s computer. Updating was haphazard as new versions and products had to be added manually. But cloud computing has changed all of that.

Driving on a Cloud
Cloud computing utilizes a secure server that users access when logging onto the Internet. This means that individual computers are no longer loaded with software. They are able to access programs via the cloud. This saves time and makes staying current on software easier.

Tools and Features
Here’s a look at software that truck owner/operators may find useful. Shop around as different programs will offer a range of features.

Income and Expense Management Software
This software is essential for just about any owner/operator. You can track your expenses and income on each trip and have access to the bottom line immediately. It’s great for understanding your cost/profit ratio. Additionally, an e-log or electronic logbook helps you keep accurate records so you’re always in compliance.

Record Keeping Software
Customer and driver records can be exhaustive to keep if you’re recording everything on paper. There are various software programs that allow for easy recording, tracking and correction of all data. Also, a fuel report program will help you assess your mileage, fuel expenses and efficiency. Settlement Reconciliation programs ensure that carriers are properly reimbursed.

IFTA Report Assessment
The International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA), which includes 10 Canadian provinces and 48 states, requires that drivers maintain detailed records. Software devoted to IFTA Reports makes it much easier for trucking owner/operators to comply with regulations governing these time-consuming reports.

Making Trucking More Predictable
Cloud computing allows for smoother operation of one truck or an entire fleet. Advances in computer technology translate into less time spent on record keeping, more effective vehicle operation, and larger profits. When utilizing software it’s important that owner/operators choose wisely as not all programs are essential to all operators.