TP Trucking is an award-winning trucking and freight company. Learn why our customers rely on TP Trucking for short haul shipments and long haul logistics.
TP Trucking, a division of Timber Products Company, hauls much more than wood. Craig Turner, General Manager of TP Trucking, David Hopkins, Logistics Manager for TP Trucking and Ray Ayers, Sales Manager for TP Trucking discuss what makes TP Trucking a great business partner.
Turner: Communication and honesty are the keys to a great partnership. For example, we approached Exterior Wood in Washougal, Washington and said: “hey, we want to do more business with you.” They said, “great, we’re looking to grow our business in California.”
We were honest with them about our rates, they were honest about their needs, and it turned into a real success story. Exterior Wood makes the same treated lumber that comes out of Medford and White City where there’s a six-hour head start [to California], and yet Exterior Wood is kicking butt down in the Bay Area because of TP Trucking.
Hopkins: We’re proud of the trust we build with our partners over time. Many of our customers start out doing one load with us, that becomes one load a week, and then one load a day. Eventually, it gets to the point where they say, “I just want you to take care of all my stuff...you guys take all the headaches.”
Ayers: What we look for in a business partner is a company with a group of employees that understands the meaning of reality. This sounds simple but when you are asked to move a customer’s product across town or across the country there are a lot of shippers that just don’t understand what it takes to get the job done.
TP Trucking is certainly not the biggest trucking company, but with full confidence, I can say we are the best at what we do. Providing our customers with a realistic solution to meet their transportation needs. A lot of other trucking companies in our industry may tell their customer what they want to hear but then they don’t follow through. The commitment we make to our customers is not for a day, or a week, or a month but rather is for the long term and mutually beneficial.
How does TP Trucking sustain customer partnerships?
Ayers: One example of this started over five years ago when we partnered with a customer located east of Portland on the Columbia River. We guaranteed them we would have a truck to load every other day and, in turn, they would have a load going south for delivery somewhere in the Bay area.
This partnership continues to grow to the point where we are now loading on average four to five trucks every day. Our customer tells us that because of our outstanding service and our commitment to give them the trucks they need; sales continue to grow.
What types of products does TP Trucking haul?
Turner: Pipe, steel and lumber are probably the three most common things. We also work with Custom Building Products, they supply Home Depots. We’ll do a milk run for them with seven pallets that go to four or five different locations.
What’s the process of onboarding a new customer?
Hopkins: We start building trust from the very first phone call. We want to know why a potential customer is reaching out, the downfalls with past carriers and how we can make sure that doesn't happen again.
Why should businesses choose TP Trucking?
Turner: Our on-time success rate and completion percentage are as good or better than any competitor for what we haul. Also, we won’t say, “hey, we can get another five cents a mile from these other guys, so we're going to go that job instead of yours.”
Of course, that trust relationship goes both ways. I met with [TP Trucking customer] U.S. Pipe recently and said, “We need to pay our drivers more. We only hire the best, and competition for reliable drivers is fierce.” They were okay with it because that's the kind of trust we have. They know I'm only going to raise rates when we truly need to.
Hopkins: TP Trucking will never be the cheapest trucking company because the most reliable is never the least expensive. Our customers have learned cheaper trucking companies will leave them hanging sooner or later. They'd rather pay us a little bit more because they can rely on us. If there’s a problem, we take care of it and get their load to where it needs to be.
How do you handle bigger problems?
Hopkins: Sometimes information isn’t flowing well, to the delivery point or to the people loading the trucks. We try to work those issues out and improve communication so we get our trucks in and out and to do as many loads as possible. In the beginning, we may need to do a lot of over-communicating to make sure that everybody's on the same page.
TP Trucking provides short and long-haul trucking services throughout all 48 contiguous states and Canada. Let us know how our trucking and freight services can help your company gain a competitive edge. Contact TP Trucking online or by phone (800) 292-4399.