|Eric Weisbrot – Marketing Manager|
Article thanks to Eric Weisbrot, Aaron Anderson and JW Surety Bonds. Links provided:
July 2019 There are more than 17,000 licensed freight brokers working within the United States today, and that figure continues to grow as the transportation industry expands. Freight brokers provide services to shippers and carriers to help ease the process of moving loads, and this assistance takes away several of the challenges transportation professionals face each day. However, not all freight brokers have the same processes, nor do they offer the same level of service to their customers. To ensure your relationship with a licensed broker is in your best interest, follow these tips below.
Know What a Freight Broker Does
The most important best practice when working with a freight broker as part of a transportation business is understanding the role he or she plays. Freight brokers work as intermediaries between shippers and carriers, coordinating the behind the scenes tasks of moving freight. Brokers also manage the progress of loads, as well as handle most of the legal requirements for getting the job done. Recognizing this as a freight broker’s role helps make each transaction more straightforward and streamlined.
Check That They are Licensed
Ensure a Bond is in Place
Verify Past Experience
Ask for Customer References
Whether a freight broker provides detailed work history and industry experience or not, another best practice is to ask for customer references. Brokers who have worked in the field for any amount of time should have success stories with past customers, and they should be willing to provide these details for potential new customers to validate. Be sure to follow through with customer references, asking questions about their experience with a specific broker.
Work with a Broker in Your Niche
Not all freight brokers work with the same demographic of shippers and carriers, nor do they all have the same expertise in a certain area of the industry. To ensure a freight broker is the right fit for your business, select a broker that knows the ins and outs of your specific market. Also, compare the benefits and drawbacks of working with a large freight brokerage versus a smaller company or individual. There are times when one may be better suited.
Build the Relationship
Have a Plan for Working Together
Communication is an essential component of working with a freight broker. It is necessary to have a plan in place for the channels of communication that will be used as loads are shipped. Just as important is the overall objective of working with a broker. Shippers and carriers must clearly identify what it is they are looking for, including what challenges they are trying to address so that the broker can provide a path toward the right solution.
Resolve Issues Quickly
Not every load will be perfect, and both freight brokers and their customers need to be aware of this truth. However, managing the issues that arise when deliveries are not completed on time or they fail to meet other specific standards is part of what makes the relationship with a broker beneficial. Shippers and carriers need to work with the broker to ensure issues are resolved quickly, which often means communicating effectively and in a timely fashion.
Trust the Process
Having a successful relationship with a freight broker comes down to trusting the process. Brokers are trained to work as intermediaries, and they are capable of completing the tasks per the request or need of the customer. Trusting the process often means letting go of some control to the freight broker, but with the right relationship, this is an easy and ultimately profitable task.
High resolution photo: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bw3AzocqJWfyamFuR3ZRRWE0RGlwRUpnWkxYQm5OeFhDQmsw/view?usp=sharing