What would your dream rideshare company look like if you could start your own rideshare company? How would you structure it? We put that question to two of our RSG contributors, Jay Cradeur and Cecily Jamelia (full and part-time drivers respectively) to elaborate how they would create a dream rideshare company.
Sometimes I drive around San Francisco, picking up and dropping off passengers, and I think to myself, could I build a better rideshare company. If I had all the resources I needed, what would my ideal rideshare company look like? Let’s dive into this interesting topic from a couple of different points of view.
A New Type of Rideshare Company?
This all got us to thinking. What if we could build our own company from scratch? How would we do it differently? What would be the foundations upon which our rideshare church would be built? Would a business that treated the drivers like true partners work? This article will lay out the fundamental tenets of a dream rideshare business.
In this article, I (Jay, 3.5 years and 24K rides) will be tackling the subject of a dream rideshare company from the perspective of full-time drivers whereas Cecily will tackle building a dream rideshare company from the perspective of part-time drivers. As we know, full time and part-time drivers can have different perspectives about driving, so in some cases, our ‘dream rideshare company’ will differ.
For those of you who don’t know Cecily, she’s been a regular contributor over on The Rideshare Guy YouTube Channel. You can catch her weekly news updates here. Additionally, Cecily Jamelia is an actress, producer, vlogger and business professional with over 5000 rides under her belt. She vlogs about her gig economy experiences on her “Drive Girl Drive” YouTube channel. A former featured seller on Fiverr, and business owner for 17 years with of clients all over the world, Cecily has helped numerous thousands of people achieve their business goals.
If you’re interested in learning how to start a rideshare company, check out our article!
Full Time Versus Part Time Drivers
For my full-time dream rideshare company, my company will only hire full-time drivers. Part-time drivers can work for Uber and Lyft. We want career drivers. We want drivers who can see a future in the rideshare industry and drivers who drive because they love driving. We want drivers who can see a 20-year career and then hang it up if they choose.
This is a section where the full-time dream rideshare company and part-time rideshare company differ! In Cecily’s dream rideshare company for part-time drivers, hiring Uber and Lyft drivers would be a priority.
Since Uber and Lyft drivers have already signed up, gone through the application process and have some driving out of the way, they’re familiar with rideshare apps and processes. Uber/Lyft drivers, were our hypothetical dream rideshare company exist, would be hired first.
Jay the FT driver: All drivers will have to go through a thorough fingerprint “live scan” background check and each driver will have to go through a drug test as well, similar to the taxi application process.
Drivers and their cars will all be fully insured. Unlike Uber and Lyft, which do not ask drivers to prove they have rideshare insurance, we would require all drivers to carry rideshare insurance. Our passengers will know that our drivers are fully vetted and cleared for driving. Female passengers will feel safe in the knowledge that our drivers are career drivers and part owners of the company.
Drivers will all go through a one-week training program. In this course, drivers will be taught how to properly prepare their car for driving, items to provide, music to play. Drivers will also be trained in passenger interaction so to provide the best driving experience and best opportunity to earn a generous tip.
Similar to taxi drivers in London who are revered for their city knowledge, It will be known that if you graduated from the training program, you are a highly skilled professional driver.
For the dream rideshare company for part-time drivers, there would be three important components of safety:
- All passengers would have to sign up using their driver’s license to confirm who they are
- All drivers will be background checked every 6 months – 1 year
- All drivers would be fingerprinted
The Driver Pay Structure Is Based Solely On Performance
Every sales organization I worked with had a level playing field in which anybody could make more than anybody else based on performance. Those who reached certain milestones earned extra compensation. Seniority, or the time you started with the company, means nothing.
Both Uber and Lyft offered drivers who started 5 years ago a larger percentage than those of us who started 3 years ago regardless of performance. In this new venture, years are not relevant. Completing 10,000 rides for the company is relevant, no matter when you started.
In this company, your rating also impacts your earnings. A 4.9 rating earns you 100% of your earnings. A 4.8 to a 4.89 earns you only 90% of your earnings. 4.95 or higher earns you a 5% bonus on top of 100% of your earnings.
For part-time drivers, our dream rideshare company would collect 5% of the ride commission – this means drivers would pocket 95% of the fare! In order to get this figured out, this dream rideshare company would start in one metropolitan area to get the kinks worked out. From there, our dream rideshare company for part-time drivers would expand. Everyone is treated equally.
In addition, drivers would get 100% of their own tips and passengers would be encouraged to tip.
Drivers Can See The Passenger’s Destination Before Accepting
Both our full-time and part-time dream rideshare companies would allow drivers to see where their passenger wants to go. If you don’t want to take the passenger to the destination, you may choose to decline and the next available car will be pinged. You may decline up to two passengers per day.
If you decline more than two passengers in a day, then your rating will be negatively impacted. Each additional decline will add a passenger rating of 1 for the decline. If you do many rides in the day, this won’t have a big impact on your numbers. If you have just a few rides, it can make the difference between you getting your 5% bonus or not.
Finally, both companies agree with Lyft’s policy on the destination filters. Six per day is sufficient.
Surge / Personal Power Zones / Bonuses
There will not be any Surge or Personal Power Zone values applied to our rates. Passengers will know that we will not gouge them simply because it is raining. If our cars are in high demand and another car is not nearby, the passenger can always get a car from our competition.
We will offer our drivers “weather incentives” based on the likelihood of inclement weather. This will give more of our drivers a reason to go out when we will have more passengers needing a ride.
Currently, part-time and full-time drivers get more or less the same bonuses and promotions. In our dream part-time rideshare company, part-time drivers would be encouraged to set a schedule for themselves and would get bonuses and promotions specifically for part-time drivers.
Additional Full-Time Driver Specifications
Drivers Are Employee-Partner Owners
For full-time drivers, I believe that if you allow workers to have some skin in the game, their commitment to the project is exponentially stronger. The driver will care more about how his or her car is presented to a passenger. A clean car means a positive impression for the company.
The attitude of each driver will be that each passenger is an opportunity to build up your company rather than “just another passenger.” The drivers will care about the company because the company’s success leads to the driver’s success.
For our full-time dream rideshare company, drivers who maintain an average of 100 trips per week are entitled to full medical benefits and participation in a retirement program. Drivers are required to take 8 weeks of vacation. They will be paid the average weekly amount earned for the past year.
Planning For The Future
Drivers may voluntarily have a percentage of their earnings invested in the company in the form of stock options. Or they may have their earnings invested in an investment vehicle recommended and monitored by the company. Either way, the drivers can have funds set aside for retirement.
Would Any of This Even Work?
Taxi companies are making it. They are turning a profit. Our companies (whether separate or together) should be able to do the same thing. We don’t have the negative baggage of a taxi company. Our cars will be cleaner and have less wear and tear, and drivers will have more incentive and training to give our passengers an exemplary experience.
I do know, as a full-time driver, that my dream full-time rideshare company is the type of company I wish I had started with back in December of 2015. I would be up to 24,000 rides and well on my way to 30,000. I would be making some good money and have plenty of money socked away for the future.
Additionally, I would be excited about driving each day, and I would be proud of being a part of a company that acted in integrity and in partnership with the drivers.
I would be working with a company that told me to go out and have a long vacation, drink some Bintangs, and enjoy my life.
What do you think? Is this pie in the sky, or something you could get behind? Go out and have a great day. Be safe out there.
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-Jay and Cecily @ RSG