As a truck driver, you’re probably already aware of the importance of your permit book. It should contain all the necessary documents needed to run your truck in various jurisdictions. How often do you look at the documents? Only when law enforcement officers ask to see it? This is the worst time to find out that some of your required documents have expired. 

Not all permits expire at the same time. Some expire at the end of the calendar year, others at various months throughout the year. As a business owner, it’s your responsibility to keep everything current, not just permits. 

Driver’s license, medical certificate, truck tag, insurances, all the various permits, and many other important documents need to be renewed before they expire. How do you keep track of all these?

For a few years now, I’ve been using a spreadsheet and digital copies, along with the hard copies carried in the permit book. With a few simple formulas and a little organization, all of your permit book documents can be available digitally along with a countdown of the expiration of each. Just a quick glance at the spreadsheet can alert you to docs that are soon to expire before they do.

Spreadsheets are a great way to organize these documents. Just scan them, upload them to a cloud service of your choosing, and then link the cloud document to your spreadsheet. I have been using Google Drive to save the docs and Google sheets for the spreadsheet, for ease of use and availability on any device. Choose the services that work best for you.

As you can see in the image below, all of the relevant information is there. Issue and expiration dates, and the name of the document is also a link to the digital copy saved in the cloud and each one has a color-coded countdown to expiration.

We all get very busy at times and very few probably check their permit book on a regular basis to see what is about to expire. A spreadsheet can put all that info at your fingertips so that you can be proactive about keeping current.

 

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Greg Huggins

Greg has been in the trucking industry since the late 1980s. After spending 25+ years as an owner operator with United Van Lines, he leased to Landstar Express America in 2014. Greg is always trying to learn something new and share what he has learned with others.

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