• Chris Jones, EA

Bookkeeping Software for Owner-Operator Trucking Companies

Understanding your company's financial health is vital to succeeding in the trucking industry. Anxiety levels increase without an up-to-date profit and loss statement as you wonder how much you'll owe in taxes. Before continuing with this software comparison, let's agree on a few things:

  1. You don't want to pay an accountant to input your data. That gets expensive.

  2. You don't want to study accounting principles to understand all the technical jargon accountants spew into their conversations.

  3. You don't want to spend more than a few minutes entering at the end of each day.

We evaluated software packages with the single-truck owner-operator in mind that produce useful reports and include vital information specific to trucking:

  • Fuel mileage

  • Fixed expenses

  • Profit per mile

  • Expense categories in $/mile

Here's what we found:


1. Duke.AI All-in-One Scanner App

Key Takeaways:

  • Automates bookkeeping; no data entry required

  • Stores and links documents to each transaction (audit proofing)

  • GPS-based IFTA tracker and report generator

  • Simple smartphone app (Apple and Android support)

  • Your favorite accounting firm can access your books to provide higher-level advice based on today's information.

Notes:

If you're looking for real-time results with minimal effort, you need to check this out. Duke is a young company with the most advanced approach to automating your books. Their leadership comes from within the trucking industry and understands the difficulty of keeping track of receipts, settlement statements, and other documents while on the road.


Linking receipts and settlement reports to the profit and loss report make this the easiest way to protect yourself from being empty-handed during an IRS audit.


We started testing Duke's system soon after meeting them at the 2019 Great American Truck Show. The app is easy to use, and their system produces accurate results. We'll be working closely with this software developer as they add new features.

2. Rigbooks

Key Takeaways:

  • Easy to use

  • Low monthly cost

  • A lot of data entry

Notes:

I like that Rigbooks designed their website to be easy enough to understand without needing to read about it. Rigbooks can also handle back-office tasks like generating invoices and settlement statements, which is useful if you have your own authority and have drivers working for you.


Rigbooks will fit you best if you don't mind entering a lot of data, and you regularly keep up with your bookkeeping (you SHOULD be!).

3. Profit Gauges by Let's Truck

Key Takeaways:

  • Easy to use

  • Low monthly cost

  • Lacking document storage

Notes:

Don't let all the "No's" in the graphic above deceive you. Profit Gauges is an excellent bookkeeping solution if you're looking for an easy interface and affordable price. The major downside to Profit Gauges is the lack of specific entry details, as everything is lumped together for the month for each category. If you're trying to confirm whether you entered a receipt, you had better have your original documents and redo your math to confirm the total is correct.


Coming from a tax background, I like knowing original receipts are safely stored electronically. If the IRS wants to audit your bookkeeping records, they're going to request a copy of the receipts and bank statements.


Since Profit Gauges doesn't offer cloud storage, I recommend investing in cloud-based storage and scanning everything once a month to avoid losing these records. This expense should be added to the monthly cost to make the comparison more apples-to-apples above.

4. TruckingOffice Pro

Key Takeaways:

  • Easy to use

  • Low monthly cost

  • A lot of data entry

  • Your favorite accounting firm can access your books to provide higher-level advice based on today's information.

Notes:

TruckingOffice Pro is as full-featured as you can get to run your trucking operation. It is also going to take a lot of time to keep up with the data entries. TruckingOffice and Rigbooks are both excellent choices for a company with multiple trucks, trailers, and drivers. If you aren't driving and spend your working day scheduling loads and routing your crew, TruckingOffice Pro will keep you organized and your records up-to-date.






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