Route Ready, the truck sales division of Big Truck Rental, is redefining off-rent waste collection vehicles via its flexible certification options that fit any budget and any timeline as well as its innovative and professional reconditioning process.
Through its process, trucks are inspected, certified and ready to hit the ground running, meeting the expectations and needs of haulers of any size.
Pete Hendrickson, director of Route Ready truck sales, recently sat down with Waste360 to discuss Route Ready’s offerings, how customers can maximize return on capital and why haulers are strategically choosing Route Ready trucks over new trucks.
Waste360: Can you provide some background on Route Ready, which was formed in 2016 and refined in 2018?
Pete Hendrickson: As our fleet continues to grow, we recognized the need to create a division that’s laser-focused on translating the value of our Route Ready trucks to expand the market. We are having daily conversations with executives at hauling companies and finding that from a net present value perspective, our certified Route Ready trucks offer one of the most compelling return on invested capital a hauler can make. The result of this work is haulers are now strategically purchasing our trucks and shifting the excess capital they typically spend on a new truck to higher yielding segments of the business such as landfills. The market is on the front end of recognizing that Route Ready trucks can have a meaningful impact on return on invested capital, free cash flow and company valuation. It’s really exciting.
Waste360: What is Route Ready’s inspection and reconditioning process?
Pete Hendrickson: Our Executive Vice President of Operations Dave Stafford has more than 30 years of experience in the industry ranging from mechanic to executive. He has partnered with our dealership network to create a replicable and scalable inspection process, which leads to a consistent product that our customers have come to rely on.
The inspection process is designed to bridge the gap between used and certified Route Ready. It has been a real game changer and differentiator in assuring our customers that the ROI [return on investment] we walk through with them is substantiated by a quality product that we stand behind.
Waste360: Please describe the three Route Ready options—Route Ready, Route Ready Plus and Route Ready Premium.
Pete Hendrickson: Flexibility is our number one priority in the market, and that’s what drives our three tiers of certification, which are designed to fit any budget and any timeline.
Route Ready is our most immediately accessible certification level, and any truck with that certification is going to arrive to a hauler in the same condition as a rental truck they would receive from us with any major blemishes addressed. The trucks are detailed on both the inside and outside, and the entire truck is certified, inspected and compliant from a DOT [Department of Transportation] standpoint.
The step up from that is what we call Route Ready Plus, and for that, we take the Route Ready level and add on a 215-point inspection; replace all hydraulics, pumps, valves and cylinders; ensure the brakes and tires are 50 percent or better; and offer an additional one-month Route Ready Confidence Warranty that handles all wearable items on the truck.
The top tier is called Route Ready Premium, and for that, we take the Route Ready Plus level and add on a custom paint job, fix any and all potential body and interior damage and expand the Route Ready Confidence Warranty from 30 days to 60 days. The Premium level is the true like-new recondition.
Waste360: What’s new with Route Ready?
Pete Hendrickson: As our fleet continues to grow, we remain laser-focused on expanding demand in the market for Route Ready trucks. The main way we’re doing that is by providing some compelling metrics that support the return on capital associated with Route Ready. So, it’s really peeling back the actual cost and showing that the upfront savings significantly outpace any future penalties from a net present value standpoint.
As these metrics get into haulers’ hands, the demand for Route Ready trucks continues to grow, and more haulers start to treat our trucks like like-new trucks instead of capturing only the urgent needs like contract growth or a down truck.
We’re also now working with haulers to project out their replenishment needs. We have the data and analytics on our trucks to be able to prebudget our trucks six to 12 months in advance, so haulers are really treating our trucks no differently than they treat new trucks from a budgeting and replenishing standpoint.
Waste360: How is Route Ready executing its programs?
Pete Hendrickson: In a very customer-centric and flexible fashion. We have a template program where a customer can select a truck by spec type, chassis type and body type. Customers also can select the range of hours that they want on a truck.
Once customers have made their selection, we collect a deposit and reserve that truck in our fleet to deliver six to 12 months in advance. We run all our trucks through our rigorous inspection process and partner with the dealer network to ensure the trucks are aligned with the Route Ready certification app.
Overall, the process is really six steps:
- Select a truck
- Budget the delivery date along with the desired hours on the truck
- Pull the truck from rent 60 to 90 days prior to delivery
- Recondition and certify the truck with the Route Ready app
- Deliver the truck
- Send follow-up survey to ensure customer satisfaction
Waste360: Why are haulers strategically choosing Route Ready trucks over new trucks?
Pete Hendrickson: In the past, it was almost all based on availability and budget, but now, there is some more strategic, forward-looking thought to return on capital of Route Ready compared to new as well as predictability of uptime within the first 90 days.
When you look at it, a 3,000-hour truck is really just entering its breaking-in period to where any sort of bugs associated with body and chassis alignment have been worked out so the truck can hit the ground running on day one. When you couple the immediate uptime with the higher return on capital, it becomes a very compelling decision for haulers to make.
Waste360: What can we expect to see from Route Ready in 2020?
Pete Hendrickson: We’re working on wrapping up our 2020 planning meetings, and I just have to say the team has so much energy and excitement about not only the present but the future of our company. It’s a very exciting time at the organization, and we’re really thrilled about the team we have in place, the execution we had in 2019 and the plan that we have to continue our growth in 2020.