How To Become A Roadside Assistance Contractor: Pros And Cons
April 6, 2023
As the number of vehicles on the road continues to increase, so does the demand for roadside assistance services. In fact, the global vehicle roadside assistance market is projected to grow to a staggering $34.8 billion by 2030.
At TRAXERO, we understand the unique challenges and opportunities that come with working in the roadside assistance industry. Here are the pros and cons to help you carefully and assess the current roadside assistance industry.
What Is A Roadside Assistance Contractor?
Roadside assistance contractors are skilled professionals who provide on-demand support to motorists experiencing vehicle issues on the road. These contractors are often the first responders when a vehicle breaks down, gets a flat tire, runs out of fuel, or gets in an accident.
It is business entities such as auto clubs, insurance companies, towing companies, repair shops, dealerships, and automobile manufacturers who hire roadside assistance contractors the most often to assist drivers on the road.
Pros Of Becoming A Roadside Assistance Independent Contractor
Flexibility is a significant advantage for those wanting to learn how to become a roadside assistance contractor. Roadside assistance contractors can set their own schedules and work as much or as little as they want. This flexibility is appealing to those who want to balance work with other commitments such as family responsibilities. Or those who prefer a non-traditional work schedule.
Many roadside assistance companies require their services 24/7. There is always a need for roadside assistance contractors who can work flexible hours, including nights, weekends, and holidays. This can also provide a sense of job security, as there is always demand for their services.
Speaking of high demand, the services of roadside assistance contractors are always in need. With over 285 million vehicles operating on roads in the U.S., breakdowns and accidents are inevitable. This means that there will always be a steady stream of work for roadside assistance contractors. Roadside assistance demand will increase with more cars on the road, making it a stable and secure career option.
Additionally, many roadside assistance companies offer ongoing training and support to their contractors. This helps them to stay up-to-date with the latest techniques and technologies. Becoming a roadside assistance independent contractor is an excellent career choice for those looking for job stability and growth opportunities.
Opportunities For Growth
As roadside assistance contractors gain more experience and build a reputation for quality service, there is potential for growth within the towing service industry. Notably, this could mean growing enough to start your own roadside service business.
The roadside service industry is constantly evolving too, meaning there is always room for innovation and growth. With advances in technology and changing customer needs, there are opportunities for roadside service contractors to expand their services. For example, a contractor could add services such as battery replacement, lockout assistance, or mobile mechanic services.
Cons Of Becoming A Roadside Assistance Independent Contractor
Working With Insurance Companies
Working with insurance companies is one of the potential downsides of becoming a roadside assistance contractor. While insurance companies can provide a significant amount of business for roadside assistance contractors, the relationship can also be complex and challenging at times. Insurance companies are looking to make a profit off of their roadside services. Because of that, insurance companies will often pay roadside assistance contractors far less than they could get from customers who contact them directly.
In addition, working with insurance companies and dispatchers can be more difficult overall. Sometimes, roadside assistance dispatchers inaccurately input information, making it harder for independent contractors to do their job correctly and cost-effectively. Roadside assistance dispatchers are either paid hourly or depending on how many calls they clear throughout their shift. Due to this, there is a lack of incentive to prioritize quality over quantity in their dispatch information.
This type of work can be physically demanding for roadside assistance contractors, as it often involves lifting heavy equipment, bending, and kneeling for extended periods. Over time, this can take a toll on the body and lead to injury or strain. And because the job requires working outdoors, weather conditions, such as extreme heat or cold can be physically challenging.
Despite the potential physical demands, there are steps that roadside assistance contractors can take to mitigate these risks, including exercising regularly, incorporating proper lifting techniques, and utilizing a host of various towing equipment to help to prevent injury and strain.
While enacted statutes such as The Move Over Law help protect people who work on the side of the road, this practice can often still be hazardous. There always is a risk of working with aggressive customers or dying in accidents. In addition, working in remote or isolated areas can pose safety risks, as there’s an increase in the risk of accidents or other safety hazards where there may be limited access to first responders. Roadside assistance contractors’ equipment and tools can also be dangerous if the contractors are not trained to use them properly.
To mitigate safety concerns, roadside assistance contractors need to keep in mind truck loading safety precautions. This may include wearing high-visibility clothing, using appropriate safety gear and equipment, and following established safety protocols. Remember to stay alert and aware of potential hazards while working on the side of the road and to avoid working in areas with heavy traffic or other dangerous conditions when you can.
Making Roadside Assistance Easier With The Proper Software
While there are many factors to consider when thinking about how to become a roadside assistance contractor, one thing is for certain: it shouldn’t be done alone.
Whether you’re an independent contractor or managing a whole fleet of operators, at TRAXERO, we help you find the best software solution for your growing towing business. Contact us today to get started, or request a demo to see our software in action.
How Does Becoming a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider Benefit Insurance Companies?
Contracted roadside assistance providers reduce response times and claim costs for insurance companies. Efficient, localized service providers offer a cost-effective solution for insurance companies while increasing customer satisfaction, leading to more brand loyalty and customer retention.
What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider?
According to Indeed, there are seven requirements for becoming a contracted roadside assistance provider:
- Acquire a Class B driver’s license
- Register your business as an LLC
- Purchase at least one tow truck
- Apply for these three permits and licenses
- An indictment management permit
- A private property permit
- A consent tow permit
- Get insurance
- Find a place to run your business and park your tow trucks
- Collect towing contracts from various business entities
How Do I Apply to Become a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider?
To apply as a contracted roadside assistance provider, research and select reputable roadside assistance companies, then visit their website to complete an application. Ensure you meet all requirements such as vehicle type and insurance to increase your chances of approval.
What Kind of Training Do I Need to Become a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider?
There is relatively little training to become a contracted roadside assistance provider. However, some important training steps would be to obtain a CDL license, be physically capable for the job, and complete hands-on tow truck operator training.
What Types of Services Do Contracted Roadside Assistance Providers Offer?
Contracted roadside assistance providers offer a wide range of services, including towing, jump-starts, tire changes, fuel delivery, lockout assistance, and more. The specific services offered may vary depending on the provider and the needs of the customer, but the goal is always to help stranded motorists get back on the road safely and quickly.
How Much Money Can I Make as a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider?
According to ZipRecruiter, the average national income for a contract roadside assistance provider is $44,553 per year. The majority of contracted roadside assistance provider salaries, however, are between $27,500 and $47,000 annually.
Do I Need to Have My Own Tow Truck or Other Equipment to Become a Contracted Roadside Assistance Provider?
No, owning a tow truck is not technically mandatory to become a contracted roadside assistance provider. However, having your own equipment, such as a tow truck or a flatbed at your disposal whenever you need to use it, can increase your service offerings and income potential.