Truck drivers have the opportunity to work in a variety of settings as commercial trucks are used in every corner of the country. Professional truck drivers also have the opportunity to haul many different types of cargo, ranging from food and lumber, to clothing and animals. But those entering the commercial trucking industry also have the opportunity to work for a variety of different size companies, depending on which setting better meets their needs and interests.

When people think of the commercial trucking industry they are likely to think about the major company names that seem to dot America’s highways, but the majority of trucking companies are small operations that rely on a small, but dedicated group of drivers.

According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, it is estimated that there are roughly half a million commercial trucking companies in the United States. Of those companies, an estimated 96 percent operate a fleet of 28 or fewer trucks, and 82 percent of all commercial trucking companies operate six or fewer trucks.

As many as 9 percent of all professional truck drivers are considered owner operators, another factor that means the majority of the commercial trucking industry is made up of small companies and small fleets.

There are advantages to working in both a large or small company. America’s largest commercial trucking companies have advantages, such as transfer opportunities, diverse shipments and the normal resources and support that larger corporation often provide. However, a small company provides many advantages as well, including a chance to have a direct relationship with your employer, tight-knit workforce and a greater chance for advancement. Small companies can also give drivers a closer look at the ins and outs of the commercial trucking industry in case they decide to someday start their own trucking company as many drivers have.

The commercial trucking industry is vital to the United States economy as it relies on the industry to deliver over 80 percent of all freight transported each year with a total value of $671 billion worth of goods. Close to another $500 billion comes from commercial trucking between the United States and Canada and Mexico.

The Diesel Driving Academy’s CDL training program prepares students for all types of cargo shipments, truck equipment and types of companies. The Diesel Driving Academy also works closely with truck driver recruiters from companies of all sizes to help insure students are able to find the job that fits them best.

Today’s trucking companies – both big and small – are looking for the most experienced drivers that have received the best training. The demand is too great for companies to simply hire drivers that just have a CDL but possess no additional training and skills.