Office workers take a great deal of care to personalize their office space. Even the most lowly cubicle is carefully set up to function as an extension of the worker’s needs and to reflect his or her personality. For those who work out of their vehicle, the same personalization is equally important. The function of the vehicle is critical in helping the workman work quickly and efficiently.
Most contractors who carry any type of inventory need a van for security and storage. A panel van, for instance, can provide several cubic feet of storage for the plumber, electrician, or mechanic. Racks and bins keep inventory from getting lost or rolling around, while the door can be locked and bolted for added security from thieves. In some cases, you may find that van contract hire is the most profitable. You can often hire a van for your company use, saving money in the long run over buying a fleet of vehicles.
Trucks usually differ from vans in that the cargo area is not enclosed. While this may leave equipment and inventory exposed to the elements or to potential thievery, there are many good reasons to use a truck as opposed to a van. A truck with the same sized engine as a van will still be more powerful, because it is not having to propel as much weight down the road.
While vans can be equipped with four wheel drive and off-road capabilities, you’re more likely to find this in a truck. This can be invaluable in the construction trades, considering that you may be called to travel on unfinished roads to reach worksites. Trucks, also, can be rented or hired.
Most craftsmen will say, “Use the right tool to do the job.” This is true with heavy equipment, as well. If you need a dirt mover or a crane, very little else will do. In these cases, hiring heavy equipment is certainly a viable option. While you may justify purchasing a van or truck because of everyday use, specialized equipment is a different story. Most construction companies, for example, will hire a crane to come in and lift trusses on a number of different job sites. The short-term rental is far less expensive than purchase and maintenance of equipment that can cost upwards of a million dollars. Road graders, concrete trucks, and other such equipment are oft3en sub-contracted out for a reason.
The appearance of your work vehicle can’t be overlooked. This is often more of a problem for the independent contractor who works for himself, and has no or few employees. You may feel comfortable riding your Harley up to a million dollar mansion to fix the plumbing, but will the residents feel comfortable letting you in the house?
Any businessman is wise to consider his company image along with the function of his vehicles when he makes such a big purchase. Your vehicle will reflect the type of job you do, so choose wisely.