“WE GREW BY 15 TRUCKS AND HAVE REDUCED OUR STAFF BY 2.”
“EVERY MONTH AXON PAYS FOR ITSELF.”
Penn Transport is an oilﬁeld service company operating in Louisiana and Texas. As they grew, they found that their oﬃce systems were not keeping up and tasks like driver pay were getting unwieldy. They decided to solve their problems with Axon Software. Shane Carnahan talks about their experience.
We specialize in oilﬁeld services, water hauling, trucking, heavy haul trucking, witch trucks, rig washes, pressure washing services, and roustabout. We have another location in Dilley, Texas, doing basically the same thing. We are trying to expand it as much as we can. Into West Texas if possible.
About 10 years ago, our owner Adam Penn started out doing hotshots and everything. We did hotshots, we did rig washes, and all of a sudden there was a need for trucking. They got into trucking. His Dad was a dispatcher for a big trucking company here. He brought his Dad on to help out. He got some trucks. He brought his Mom on and she did a lot of the accounting. His brother came in from doing lawn-care service and rig washing, and they’ve basically been here 10 years. Grown it up.
I am Shane Carnahan of Penn Transport here in Shreveport, Louisiana.
About November 1 of 2018, we made the switch and went live with Axon. It’s been a very positive experience. Coming from QuickBooks. . . . QuickBooks is very simplistic. It’s suited for a wide range of companies, you can make changes in your transactions, do a lot of diﬀerent things. What we needed was something more robust, speciﬁcally for the trucking industry. Trying to deal with our driver pay, get our invoicing down with our trucking tickets and everything.
We found that Axon was a good ﬁt for us because of the way that it tracked the trucking tickets. The way that everything seamlessly ﬂowed through its system made us able to do driver pay and driver settlements.
The guys love them. It’s been a very positive experience.
Administration of the payroll was a big problem. We were able to solve that. We’re also able to go in and record our disposal costs within the carrier module.
Then on the payables side, we’re able to go in and bring that disposal cost. It shows that we’ve billed it out to make sure we’re making money. Those have been some real positives that the system has helped us out with.
When we first started the company, the guys would do a timesheet and they would list all their trucking tickets. We would have to go in there and manually do their payroll through QuickBooks. There was no way to track and make sure that the fuel tickets had been billed out to the customer.
We basically started using the timesheet in QuickBooks to go in there and record the fuel tickets and everything else, to pay the guys off that. But it never really solved the problem to where we could see whether the driver’s fuel ticket was billed out to the customer.
That was one big thing that Axon helped us solve. Making sure that when we check “ready to pay” we know the driver’s pay is in there. We have the fuel ticket. You can look on the report and it says the ticket is not waiting to be invoiced. We know that all our drivers are getting paid correctly. We know that we are billing our customers correctly.
We’ve brought a lot more people into the invoicing realm. When I first started, I was the only one that did the invoicing. Now we’ve been able to bring in our dispatchers and our other people. So a job calls in, we can go in there and create the fuel ticket, and then all of that is done before a billing clerk even looks at it. All she has to do then, once she gets that ticket in and done, is push a button. We generate the invoice. Very nice.
For all our operators, we use equipment revenue reports. Another one is the bill disposal report. If I cannot locate a particular disposal ticket, I’m able to go in and see if it was actually billed out. It’s a specialized report that I did not have before.
All the support has been outstanding. We are able to immediately call or email and get answers to our questions. The Axon staff is able to go in there and look at our screen and take care of all the answers.
QuickBooks was kind of a cookie-cutter box. They did have some support, but it was a little bit difficult to get through to them. We have probably utilized Axon support staff to its fullest, and we’re eager to look into doing more specialized reports out of the system.
The training has been absolutely outstanding. When we started, the way that it was broken down into different modules and sub-components, that was always a daily lesson. We were able to go in there and ask questions, stop her, everything. Everybody had a very good understanding pretty much from day one.
The other thing I liked is, we’ve had new people come in and old people leave, and we’ve always been able to set up a training session with Axon – whether it’s accounts receivable, payable, whatever it is. They’ve been more than willing to come in and take care of that for us.
Very favorable experience.
In our industry, it all depends on the need. We had the ability 6 months ago to bring on additional owner operators and that grew our fleet by 10 to 15 trucks. During the same time, while we have had staff turnover and everything, we have no had to replace our staff. Actually, we are down about 2 staff members and that we’ve been able to do without.
We had the ability to grow by 15 trucks and we have actually reduced our staff by 2. Every month it pays for itself. If we added another 20 trucks, we might need 1 more billing clerk, just to handle the volume of fuel tickets.
Whether you’re a new accounting clerk or an experienced dispatcher, Axon software comes with comprehensive online Help to assist you with your daily tasks or unexpected situations.
- Step-by-step instructions to help you complete everyday tasks,
- Suggestions to help you save time, and
- Solutions for common problems.
The Month-End Checklist provides you with a list of tasks that are normally completed at month-end as well as tips on what to look out for. There is also a Year-End Checklist.
The screen displays the outstanding checks, deposits, factor transactions, or journal entries for the bank account you have chosen. As you review your bank statement, you can checkmark the transactions that have cleared your bank account.
Clicking on a column heading (e.g. date, type) sorts the information by that column, making it easier for you to find the item you’re looking for. By double clicking on a line item, you can view the source transaction (e.g. customer payment, payables check, journal entry).
The bottom section of the screen is used to manually enter any miscellaneous transactions that are listed on your bank statement but have not yet been entered (e.g. bank charges, interest, credit line transfers).
The system will maintain a running balance of checks and deposits that have been cleared or remain outstanding. When you enter in the final balance from your bank statement, you will be given an adjusted balance from which the system has deducted any outstanding items. The system will then deduct the actual GL bank balance and, if your bank reconciliation has been accurate, the net difference will be zero.
TAKING ADVANTAGE OF BATCH EMAILING
Batch emailing can be an eﬃcient way to send out Customer Statements, Equipment Statements, Invoices, or Driver Settlements.
The first step is to add email labels for each of the relevant individuals. Right click on the email address on the Business Partners screen, choose Label, and then choose the appropriate options: customer statement, equipment statement, receivables invoice, and direct deposit email. Right click on the email address on the Employees screen for direct deposit and driver settlement email labels. An L will appear beside the email address to show that a label has been attached to the field.
You can set up a message that will print in the footer of your emails in the Equipment & Driver Statement and Receivables Setup Options. You can also customize the Subject line on your receivables invoices emails.
Batch emails can be sent from the following screens: Customer Statements, Reprint Equipment Statements, Reprint Driver Settlements, and Print Invoices. Use the filters at the top of the screen to choose the invoices or statements you want to send. You can resend individual invoices or statements as an attachment using the PDF > Email as attachment option.
HANDLING NSF PAYMENTS
If a check bounces, choose the NSF Payment button on the Payments and Credits screen and enter the date you want the NSF payment to appear on your bank reconciliation. All the invoices will be removed from the payment and will again be outstanding.
In order to avoid duplicate entries for an NSF payment, be sure to mark the original payment as NSF. Don’t enter it as a new payment or you will have two sets of journal entries for the same payment. You can review your journal entries by choosing Current > Drill Down on the Payments and Credits screen. Use the Prev button to review both sets of entries.
The Receivable Report will indicate the status of an NSF payment as of the date of the report (e.g. a report dated prior to the date of the NSF payment will show an unapplied payment decreasing the customer’s total receivable amount). A notation beside the payment will provide the date on which the payment was marked as NSF.
PENDING RECEIVABLE REPORT
The Pending Receivable Report is a convenient way to identify outstanding orders (orders with an Order End Date that have not yet been invoiced). However, it’s important to keep in mind the following points:
- The Pending Receivable Report will not include transactions where the Amount To Bill and End Date fields have not been filled in.
- If the receivables invoice is dated prior to the End Date, or if there is no Order End Date, the transaction will be listed as a negative amount on the report.
- You cannot use the Pending Receivable Report to determine the total outstanding orders portion of a customer’s outstanding balance as the report does not include taxes or orders without end dates.
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- How properly integrating your dispatch and operations software with your back‐office systems can slash your current office staff’s workload in half!
- How a simple one‐step interface option can help cut 10 days of work or more—each and every month—off your fuel bill processing.
- What most trucking software companies don’t want you to know about their so‐called “Real‐Time” systems that could cost you thousands of dollars every month.
- Why integrating your Accounts Payable transaction entries with your operations software will save you over half a week of work—every month.
- And much more!