Becoming a freight broker is not easy. The job itself is hectic, not to mention the pressure that comes with it. Still, after having undergone rigorous training into acquiring your freight broker’s professional license, not much will bother you. On that note, you may be wondering if the training is hard. Well, you are about to find out.
What You Need to Know
Before you embark on this journey of becoming a freight broker, it is essential to make a simple review of the industry. Next to earning an average annual salary of $90,000, the role freight brokers fulfill is invaluable. They are an essential pillar in the industry of transporting goods.
A brokerage will consist of a workforce known as freight agents. They are obliged to the brokerage by contract, which gives them permission to broker freight under the brokerage name. An agent will, however, need a license, as they also operate using the license requirements. Freight agents are considered to be independent contractors, and they are paid in commission. This can be anywhere between 50%-80% of the brokerage profits from each job.
Becoming A Freight Broker
Mostly, as you will find, the process of becoming a broker in this field is multi-faceted and a little complex. This is largely due to the freight broker’s complex role, which according to The Diesel Gypsy holds the primary function of matching shipping companies with the appropriate ground transportation carrier for a specific load. This asks for a lot of premeditated meticulous planning, making the task very difficult.
In your training to become a freight broker, licensed to ship cargo, you will be exposed to the general basic skills. However, only by attending a freight brokerage school will your training be complete. With your school training, you may want to look to procure freight brokerage books, so as to refer to them during your active years. The training typically takes 3-4 weeks to complete.
By investing in your training and education, you will receive deep knowledge from your expert teachers, and this will enable you to take on your tasks with readiness. This will include practical knowledge, which you must know is extensive and extremely rigorous. This will put you on the right path to acquiring your license. Apart from that, you will need to:
Establish Business Structure
You must start off by establishing how you want your business to be structured. It is highly advisable to ask both your attorney and your accountant to weigh in on this process.
Submit an OP-1
Now that you have established the premises and structure of your business, you will be taken to the second step. You will need to obtain an OP-1 form. This will be done by providing the FMSCA, which will include your general business information.
Getting the surety bond BMC-84 is necessary yet difficult. The reputation it has gained for being difficult to obtain is due to the jargon and many layers the process has. Nevertheless, the hardest to obtain is the federal bond.
Register the Brokerage
The final step is to register the process, which is more difficult than it may seem. You will have to register with the Unified Carrier Registration, which will require a bunch of fees to be paid. These fees are to be paid to the broker’s base state.
What to Expect from Freight Broker Training Course
Entering this $700 billion will not be easy. You will be faced with a lot of trialling periods, some of which may have you reconsider taking this path. Though, most of the trials will begin after your training has completed. However, for as much as your training goes, here is what you should expect to learn.
Setting Up a Brokerage
The fundamentals of your training course will focus primarily on teaching you how to set up your own brokerage. This will be incorporated with the obtaining the licensing forms. Part of your teachings will include managing your office, so as to get the most out of it.
The training course will work on developing your sales technique. Encompassed with teaching you how to market and sell your service, you will also be taught how to find freight and identify the best opportunities. This part of your training will have you become well-prepared to face the thriving competition in the industry.
Along with all the theory, you should expect to learn extensive pragmatic skills. This will include negotiating the rates with the shippers and carriers you will be working with, finding trucks to move the freight and all of the post-procedures. You will also learn how to calculate the rates properly. All of which are skills you will hone both during your course and afterwards.
As a freight broker you will be regularly dealing with documents and software. During your course, you will learn all about them, which will include learning to operate the online world. The online world is an essential tool used by most brokerages, as it allows brokers to find truck services that are available in real-time, which then gives you instant access to the service.
As transporters of goods, you will need to learn about the law that identifies with your craft. This will focus on the transportation industry law. But it will also involve learning about the agreements and contracts of freight.
Though it is an arduous engagement, it is not as hard as it may seem. In fact, the hardest part is not the training or any of the tasks that you will perform, but ensuring that you acquire the right set of surety bonds.
When you are looking for a brokerage school, with some schools being online, you must make sure the one you have chosen is reputable, which you can tell from the number of graduated students. Upon receiving your license and becoming an active freight agent, make sure that you are offering a thoroughgoing service as it is the only way to ensure your survival in this industry.