More Glossary Terms

Private Fleet

A private fleet is in-house transportation used by an organization to move its own freight to customers, stores, warehouses, or distribution centers.

What is a private fleet in logistics and freight transportation?
The private fleet definition in freight transportation may vary for a shipper moving its own goods. Often, a private fleet may be incorporated as a separate company, operating under a parent organization that’s primary business is manufacturing, retailing, or other trade.
Private fleets may also have their own operating authority to act as for-hire carriers. The private fleet can generate revenue and lower net operating costs by selling excess capacity not used by the parent company.

In a $700 billion overall trucking industry in the U.S., private fleet operations account for roughly half of the overall market.

Private Fleet vs Dedicated Fleet

Private fleet carriers provide a rolling stock of transportation equipment owned by a company with the primary intent of moving its own freight shipments. Shippers get confirmed capacity from their private fleets and network visibility. Companies with a private fleet own their equipment and employ the drivers, although trucks and/or trailers may be leased and drivers hired temporarily.

A dedicated fleet is owned by an asset-based carrier that operates on a contracted basis with a freight shipper. Fleet trucking companies provide tractors, trailers, drivers, and other resources exclusively to one customer within a network. A dedicated fleet offers a shipper guaranteed capacity without the financial risk of fleet management, including vehicle purchase and maintenance, insurance, and driver training and compliance.
For Hire vs Private Fleet

A for-hire carrier is a person or company that provides cargo transportation for compensation. There are two types of for-hire carriers: common carriers and contract carriers. For-hire carriers can dedicate fleet resources to a freight shipper.

Shippers relying on a dedicated fleet enjoy greater control over shippers using for-hire carriers in spot or contract markets. For-hire carriers offer shippers greater flexibility but less control over transportation than a dedicated fleet.
Freight shippers can outsource transportation to for-hire carriers or operate their own private fleets. In doing so, private fleet operators incur equipment and human resources costs and risks and the advantage of direct transportation control.
Advantages of Private Fleet

Organizations that operate an in-house freight transportation company access benefits such as:

  • On-demand trucking capacity
  • Cost control
  • Fleet customization
  • Premium customer service
  • Cost advantages compared to outside carrier services.

Private fleets are generally three times safer than the overall safety performance in the trucking industry. Private fleet driver turnover is traditionally the lowest in the industry, averaging 14.5% compared to 90% in the fire-hire truckload sector.

Trailers, equipment, and other private fleet resources with branded marketing materials create visible advertising for the parent company.

Learn how MercuryGate helps you manage your fleet for maximum performance.

How Does MercuryGate support Private Fleet Management?

MercuryGate supports private fleet and dedicated fleet management functionality integrated within the TMS. Capabilities enable shippers in both scenarios to:

  • Maximize asset utilization and reduce empty miles.
  • Ensure regulatory compliance for drivers and equipment.
  • Integrate the fleet into a non-asset-based operation.
  • Easily manage driver data and safety records.
Brokered And Contracted Fleet Management

An automated fleet management system makes it easier for shipping fleet managers to coordinate spot or contract freight, all from one TMS platform.

Match Capacity With Shipments in Real-Time

Advanced software options make transport fleet management viable for real-time intervention and decision-making. Private fleet trucks and drivers do not have to sit idle. Innovative digital freight matching allows for instant matching of drivers and cargo.

Reduce Freight Transport Risk And Boost Shipping Compliance

Private fleet managers monitor and control freight shipments and monitor compliance practices with a system where accessible insights limit risk and disruption.

Lower Overall Expenses and Manage Technology Costs

Shipping fleet managers benefit from built-in capabilities, enhanced tools, and automation technology that reduces the time and cost of updating tech stacks. An integrated TMS system offers ready-to-go technology solutions and makes managing private fleet services easier.

Improve Delivery Accuracy, Adaptability, and Efficiency

Automated transportation management software with real-time communications and notifications reduces errors. Optimized systems give fleet managers better insight into accuracy, adaptability, and efficiency overall.

With improved transport fleet management and optimized private fleet services, MercuryGate TMS helps freight shippers eliminate the hassle of manually monitoring activities across private, dedicated, contract, and spot transportation.

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