Owner Operator Mercer VS Landstar

TruckerRon

Member
Hello, I'm going O/O at the first of the year and am trying to decide which company to lease on to. Anyone who has experience with both would be great to share their insight on this- I will tremendously appreciate it!

I've spoken to guys of each on the road and get mixed reviews from both sides. Landstar has more dryvan trailers than Mercer... but does that really matter? Who can keep me busy? I thought about training for flatbed instead of running dryvan... but I think it would be better to start flatbed in the spring.
 

mndriver

curmudgeon extraordinare
Supporter
The only one that can determine how busy you will be is you.

The brokers and agents you work with in their systems will help or hurt you.

It'll be the reputation you make of yourself that determine your rates.

All of you actions or performance are recorded by the agents or their minions. And when they pull you up, that ranking will help you get better paying rates
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Hello, I'm going O/O
Make sure you have thought this through. Rather than “going owner operators”, fully understand that you are starting a business.

Landstar and Mercer are both places where you book your own loads based on their freight base. You will determine how busy and profitable you are.

You can be successful at either place, or fail at either place. The deciding factor will be how prepared you are once you dive into this business.
 

Sinister

Supermodel
Staff member
Supporter
The only one that can determine how busy you will be is you.

The brokers and agents you work with in their systems will help or hurt you.

It'll be the reputation you make of yourself that determine your rates.

All of you actions or performance are recorded by the agents or their minions. And when they pull you up, that ranking will help you get better paying rates

I've also heard this about both places. You relationship with the various agents really plays into things. Some are no better than crappy brokers, and some hold loads for their favorites drivers, etc.

Be a favorite driver.
 

mndriver

curmudgeon extraordinare
Supporter
I've also heard this about both places. You relationship with the various agents really plays into things. Some are no better than crappy brokers, and some hold loads for their favorites drivers, etc.

Be a favorite driver.
goes with any brokerage.

Your performance, hustle, communication and demeanor will set you apart.

we have a couple brokers that work well with us. Some call us out of the blue and beg us to cover a load. I've bounced 400-500 miles for one broker to bail him out. And he paid some stupid rates to me to do it.

but he knows that he won't have to wonder if the load will be there.

I've had brokers in the past that I worked with consistently. Every Thursday I'd get all the rate cons for the following week. That would be the only email I got from her all week.

did that for a year. Then someone came in and totally undercut me. They wanted me to do it for the same rate as the low ball.

I never hauled that load again.
 
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TruckerRon

Member
I've been talking to more drivers out here... and several that work with Landstar say it's a good company, but they're not making much money. One guy I spoke with tonight said you have to learn the brokering game and how Landstar works before you will be successful. And Landstar doesn't even have a course or show you how to work the system?? Crazy. I need to find way to learn their system BEFORE getting into the company! I was also told that with Mercer, it goes by seniority and you cannot just come in and expect to be busy. Hmmm... WHY would they not want a driver to be busy IF they have the loads?
 

TruckerRon

Member
I could always lease on to my current company. They said they don't play the seniority game and give loads to whoever is in the area of the load. But my company doesn't pay that well. They pay per mile even for owner/operator and it's also graduating pay scale. The longer the load, the less per mile. Two guys I spoke with that are doing it, said they like it and would never go back to the company side. My terminal mgr told me they have over 400 drivers leased on currently.
 

Sinister

Supermodel
Staff member
Supporter
I've been talking to more drivers out here... and several that work with Landstar say it's a good company, but they're not making much money. One guy I spoke with tonight said you have to learn the brokering game and how Landstar works before you will be successful. And Landstar doesn't even have a course or show you how to work the system?? Crazy. I need to find way to learn their system BEFORE getting into the company! I was also told that with Mercer, it goes by seniority and you cannot just come in and expect to be busy. Hmmm... WHY would they not want a driver to be busy IF they have the loads?
67% of nothing is what again?
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
I've been talking to more drivers out here... and several that work with Landstar say it's a good company, but they're not making much money. One guy I spoke with tonight said you have to learn the brokering game and how Landstar works before you will be successful. And Landstar doesn't even have a course or show you how to work the system?? Crazy. I need to find way to learn their system BEFORE getting into the company! I was also told that with Mercer, it goes by seniority and you cannot just come in and expect to be busy. Hmmm... WHY would they not want a driver to be busy IF they have the loads?
Landstar has a little online presentation that demos their load board.
 

Rigjockey

In Gord we trust!
Supporter
I thought @gearjammer was a Landstar guy? No comment yet?
I worked for landstar way back when it was Landstar Ranger and Ligon and whatever. True, what they say about their agents, it is just like any other broker.
I have a friend that worked for Mercer but I don't know much about them other than you pick your own loads.
 

gearjammer

jammer
Supporter
at one time Landstar was THE company to lease on to, The guy that started Landstar ( Jeff Crow) really was looking out for the O/o's that leased to his company, sadly when he he took the company public the bean counters were able to take control and pretty well forced Jeff to give up control, and he became a figure head and the bean counters pretty well destroyed the Company!!
Landstar went down the toilet and now is just another has been company
@Rigjockey I am just so disgusted by what Landstar has become and trucking in general I just don't care anymore.
Most of the drivers and O/o's today are shadows of what real truckers of the past were, and don't even realize
what could be accomplished if they worked together instead of trying to screw each other
 

TruckerRon

Member
I supply the power and I pull dryvan. However, I've been thinking about getting into flatbed, as well. But right now, dryvan is it. I do know of a company I wanted to try working for, though they require 2 years of experience and I only have one. Another company I would like to work for is Patriot Star -though they require 3 years of experience. Kenny long is the owner of the company and he is one of the wisest men in trucking!
 
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ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
I supply the power and I pull dryvan. However, I've been thinking about getting into flatbed, as well. But right now, dryvan is it. I do know of a company I wanted to try working for, though they require 2 years of experience and I only have one. Another company I would like to work for is Patriot Star -though they require 3 years of experience. Kenny long is the owner of the company and he is one of the wisest men in trucking!
I think you'll find most people want at least 2 years.
 

Nomad1

B()()()B
Supporter
I supply the power and I pull dryvan. However, I've been thinking about getting into flatbed, as well. But right now, dryvan is it. I do know of a company I wanted to try working for, though they require 2 years of experience and I only have one. Another company I would like to work for is Patriot Star -though they require 3 years of experience. Kenny long is the owner of the company and he is one of the wisest men in trucking!
I didn't realize any companies cared about how long you've been driving if you were providing the truck and just leasing on.
 
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