Freight Broker Career Information

A freight broker is a person who acts as a liaison between an authorized motor carrier and another firm or individual in need of shipping services. A freight broker can operate individually or work on behalf of a firm. They play a vital role in cargo movement since it is the responsibility of the broker to determine the needs of a shipper and choose a suitable carrier for the purpose of transporting the items at an affordable price. Freight brokers carry an immense burden on their shoulders. The goods of the world could not move without them, they are the reason everything, from shoes to wrenches, are transported from one continent to another.

Educational Qualifications Required

In order to become a freight broker, you must be well informed about the nature of the job and various procedures involved in obtaining license. There are many training institutes that provide education for this career choice. However, a formal education is not compulsory. It is also possible to learn the basic skills by working for a licensed freight broker.

Once a candidate obtains the required knowledge, the next step is to begin applying for license with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The website of the administration allows the candidates to fill and submit the form online. Following this, a motor carrier number would be provided to the candidate, without which it is not possible to carry on with the remaining procedures. The entire process might take up to six weeks.

In addition, you should also have good communication skills as freight brokers with adept language skills become more successful than others in this field. People with the ability to cope with immense stress are the ones that are ideally suited for this profession.

Basic Tasks and Work hours of a Freight Broker

A freight broker co-ordinates with clients. The client base can consist of wholesalers, distributors or people belonging to various businesses. Work hours depend on the needs of the clients. For example, if you are working as a freelancer or own a business of your own, the hours can be significantly longer. The scenario might be different if you are employed by a company. Everyday tasks of a freight broker involve:  

  • Meeting prospective clients and managing to their requirements.
  • Analyze the shipping needs of the clients.
  • Short listing various carrier options available for the client.
  • Explain various available options to the client.
  • Determine the best shipping method.
  • Convey the requirements of the shipper to the carrier and arrange for transportation of items.
  • Manage various procedures for shipping items.

Earnings and Advancement Opportunities

A freight broker on an average earns about $39,000 annually. A broker has the opportunity to be promoted to a higher level in the firm. Depending on your experience as a freight broker, you can be trusted with the responsibility of supervising a group of freight brokers.  A promotion to Head of the Department is also a possibility. If you have knowledge or experience about other parts of the world, you will have an added advantage as a broker because you have added knowledge.