In 1971, Jack Jones began his company in Downey with two trucks and a basic philosophy of personal, professional customer treatment and dependable service.
It was a simple formula that worked. The benchmark for treatment - of customers and employees alike - was family. Every business is reliant upon its relationships, and JJT prides itself on taking care of people and following a system that allows the job to get done in a friendly, personable and efficient manner.
Jack's daughters Valerie Liese and Erin Craig grew up in the business, getting their early start by washing trucks and doing odd jobs. They learned about trucking from the ground up, working their way through the many levels of the business, taking on increasing responsibilities and making sacrifices as JJT grew. Today that includes over 100 employees, 50 trucks, and covers a 150-mile radius around the company's terminal in Ontario.
The values that Valerie and Erin and the entire JJT family bring to the operation have resulted in a loyal and happy staff, as well as dozens of long-term customers that count on JJT for continued excellent service.
"Our customer retention is high," says Valerie, "because we offer lower rates and we're dependable. JJT is big enough to handle any job, yet small enough to personally take care of any situation that might come up. Our customers know that their goods will be delivered on time, consistently. And it's not just the big accounts that matter. We take care of the mom-and-pop businesses with the same concern that we provide to our big customers."
JJT has won numerous service awards, including Quality Carrier of the Year by Brasscraft Manufacturing, and was named Western Regional Carrier of the Year by Johnson and Johnson two years in a row. The company has also been listed in the Inland Empire Business Press Top 100 Woman Owned Businesses each year since 1996, and in that publication's Top 20 Trucking Companies in the Inland Empire. JJT was also recognized for being #4 in women-owned businesses in the Inland Empire in 2001.
"Our success rate for next-day delivery is about 99 percent, which is largely due to coordinated efforts with the customer" says Valerie. "If there's a delay, we work directly with the shipper and the customer to take care of it right away. Our relationship with our customers is our most vital asset. Without it, we don't have a business."
Possibly the greatest indicator of the company's commitment is shown in its employee retention. Where many carriers experience 100 to 200 percent annual turnovers, JJT's rate in most years is roughly just one percent.
"Once the employees are here, they tend to stay. We're family-owned, and we treat our employees as family."
JJT's appreciation of its employees is sincere, with frequent recognition for outstanding service and other acknowledgements of employee contributions. The company regularly has picnics, parties, golf tournaments, bowlings nights, and many other functions throughout the year.
The results are lower costs to the company, which JJT in turn passes on to its customers.
"Everyone on the team - the drivers, the mechanics, the office staff, everyone - cares about our customers and are here to take care of their needs," Valerie says. "JJT isn't a giant trucking company - in fact, we're the underdogs. But that just means we have more opportunity to give personal service.
"Our customers are part of our family. We treat them with courtesy and
respect, and a desire to make sure that all of their needs are met to the best of our ability. That's our commitment."