Anderson Trucking Service Inc. has announced that it is on track to pay out $1 million in completion bonuses to drivers who have completed a one-year lease. Since inception, more than 1,400 drivers have made the transition from company driver to independent contractor by taking part in a 12-month lease with ATS, based in St. Cloud, Minn.
Upon completing their lease, each driver receives a cash bonus of $3,200 that may be used however the driver desires. Many drivers choose to use the money as a down payment to purchase the truck they’ve been driving or as a down payment on a new truck. Others decide to keep the cash bonus and begin another 12-month lease. ATS has drivers who now are entering into their 10th one-year lease, racking up $32,000 in completion bonuses so far.
ATS says the yearlong lease is designed as a way of helping drivers first test out being a contractor before making a multiyear commitment to buy a tractor, and it also gives drivers a head start by requiring no fixed expenses for the first two weeks of operation. The equipment available for lease includes precertified 2005 or newer Freightliner, Volvo, International and Peterbilt tractors.
The program is set up to be as user-friendly as possible for drivers, with attractive features such as free plates and permits, guaranteed “fuel protection” plan, weekly settlements, a 30-day bumper-to-bumper warranty, a one-year drivetrain warranty and no credit check.