A freight broker is an intermediary between the buyer that requires shipping services and an authorized carrier company for goods. They can be called a match between carrier and cargo. A freight broker plays a crucial role in the cargo movement by determining the needs of a shipper and connecting it with the motor carrier, who is ready to transport the goods by different means of transportation at an agreeable price.
In America freight brokers, individuals or companies are generally licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), under U.S Department of Transportation. Freight brokers are expected to have knowledge of the shipping industry as a whole. They also need to be well versed with the technological resources to meet varied demands of shippers.
Generally, freight brokerage association looks out for candidates who have attained a business, management or logistics degree from a recognized university and have attended a freight broker training program. However, there are many companies that do not believe in any specific qualifications and hire fresh college graduates with good communication skills, a fair understanding of worldly customs and relatively fast in mathematical calculations.
A freight broker is held responsible for transportation, distribution and needs to be alert about the logistics that are carried from one place to another. It is their liability to maintain a sound relationship with the shipper and the buyer. The freight broker is held responsible for any negligent action by the goods carrier contractor. Since they carry a big responsibility, the freight brokerage agent training teaches to exercise care and diligence to the brokers. A good freight broker needs to build a skill in sales and marketing to constantly expand their business and deliver satisfactory deals to involved parties.
Once a consignment is booked by the freight broker, it is their responsibility to optimize its expenditures. This requires ensuring reduced transportation cost to the buyer and to meet this, a proper information system should be offered to check the transportation performance. Negotiation is a necessary skill for a freight broker. Other financial responsibilities of a freight broker include offering supplemental services like claims handling without any additional extra cost to the shipper, if possible.
The freight brokers should abide by the policies laid for insurance coverage. It states that the insurance carrier should be handled by a legal defense so that a quality norm is maintained for freight brokers and its forwarders. Although, logistic business providers are well-managed in the industry, being alert in selection of financial supplier is important. A freight broker therefore should be familiar with the local rules and regulations in a global environment.