Top 5 Factors to Consider While Choosing Freight Brokers

Monday, 08 July 2019 | Freight broker

Did you know that there are almost 6 trillion ton-miles of freight moved annually, just in the U.S alone? Transportation is a crucial aspect of the global economy as the entire world relies on freight shipping on a daily basis. In fact, everything we use and consume in our day-to-day life gets to us through shipping services. And that is why businesses across the globe have been relying on freight brokers for supporting and sustaining their supply chain efficiently. Serving as an intermediary between a shipper and carrier, a freight broker ensures your shipment gets from point A to point B on time and safely. Working with a reputed freight broker to streamline your freight transportation operations saves time, money and resources. However, you should make sure you have a reliable  company handling all of your freight forwarding and shipping services. Here are the top five factors you need to consider when selecting a freight broker.

1. Credentials

According to the federal law, anyone arranging transportation of a property for compensation should have broker license issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Visit FMCSA's website to check whether your choice of freight broker is licensed. The rigorous licensing procedure involves bonding and insurance requirements set by FMCSA, so that it guarantees legitimacy.  Partnering with a licensed and bonded freight broker protects your business from property damage, fraud or any other illegal activities. 

2. Industry experience

Logistics and transportation is a complicated yet competitive business. If a freight brokerage company has managed to survive the market competition, recession and emerged stronger, then they certainly know how to execute for their customers and operate a business. Having an experienced freight broker with financial stability to assist you in transportation and logistics adds value to your business. 

3. Carrier compliance

Do enquire about their carrier vetting procedures. How are carriers approved? How many trucks or drivers do they have? What are their safety records? You are about to entrust your freight with these carriers and it is your responsibility to ensure that drivers are experienced, insured, and use well-maintained equipment. Never hesitate to ask questions about their carrier’s operating authority, insurance coverage, safety ratings, and records. 

4. Use of Technology

Logistics and transportation industry has been undergoing a technological revolution. And you need to partner with a freight brokerage company that adapts and integrates the latest tools and technology  to make their operations more efficient and drive value to customers. Check whether they have access to the most up-to-date technology to deliver real-time insights and reports.

5. Customer service

Once you have narrowed down the list of candidates to a few viable options, it is time for the final check: customer service. Every freight brokerage company claims to offer superior customer services; so how do you figure out the truth? Ask for references. Contact their previous or existing clients to enquire about the broker’s responsiveness and problem solving skills. While asking for freight quotes or making a general enquiry, pay attention to their response time and communication skills.  If you feel they understand your requirements and concerns, then that would be the most differentiating factor in making a decision. 

Freight shipping industry is fluctuating constantly and having a partner that is capable of adapting to your ever changing business needs is a boon. However, do spend your time to research the market and analyze the available options before signing on the dotted line.