Freight brokers play a key role in getting products from the manufacturer to the retailer.
They function to make the process run smoothly and efficiently.
Using large databases, freight brokers select the type of transportation company their client needs.
Then they maintain reliable communication between the parties to get products to their destination.
From examining the specifics of the shipment and the type of truck, train, boat, or other transportation that is needed, you will also be responsible for negotiating the shipment costs fairly for everyone.
Table of Contents
- What Skills Do a Freight Broker Need?
- What Do Freight Brokers Do?
- Becoming a Certified and Licensed Freight Broker in Minnesota
- Education Opportunities in Minnesota
- Salary Expectations and Potential for Career Growth
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Freight Broker Info by State
What Skills Do a Freight Broker Need?
Freight brokers need a diverse set of skills in order to be successful.
- Great communication skills
- Ability to broker deals between carriers and shippers
- Organization skills
- Planning skills
- Ability to work in an active environment.
What Do Freight Brokers Do?
- Coordinate details about a client’s load and get it scheduled.
- Find an appropriate carrier for the client.
- Negotiate the shipping price.
- Schedule pickup and drop off of the shipment and any other details.
- Monitor the shipment in transit and take care of any issues that arise.
- Communicate with both parties during the shipping process.
- Manage payments and invoices.
Becoming a Certified and Licensed Freight Broker in Minnesota
You are not required to have a special certification to work as a freight broker in Minnesota.
It’s helpful from a career standpoint to have one.
The most widely industry certification comes from the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA).
It is the Certified Transportation Broker (CTB).
There are also no licenses that are state-specific to Minnesota.
The credentials you need are through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
This is a section of the US Department of Transportation.
FMCSA ensures that carriers move products safely and efficiently by managing transportation rules and regulations.
Easy Steps to Get Your FMCSA Freight Broker License Quickly
- Start by applying for a USDOT number through the US Department of Transportation. Their system is called the Unified Registration System (URS) for first-time applicants.
- Get a Surety Bond for at least $75,000. The cost if you have good credit will be 1-5% of the bond. A Trust Fund Agreement is another option.
- You will need a designated Process Agent. They will need to register through FMCSA. They function as your legal representative in Minnesota for cases such as liability or product loss.
- The application process costs $300. It typically takes 4–6 weeks for the license to be processed through FMCSA.
Education Opportunities in Minnesota
Freight brokers are not required to have any educational background in Minnesota.
However, employers are looking for applicants who have a high school diploma or GED.
There are training classes and programs available.
This helps you to understand the industry and your role.
Also, employees are attracted to applicants who went for formal training.
Another benefit of these training courses is that many of them are online and/or self-paced allowing you to proceed through your education at your own pace.
Educational Training Programs in Minnesota for Freight Broker Training
- Normandale Community College in South Bloomington, MN – This college offers both online and self-paced courses for freight broker training. These courses cover everything you need to know about the industry and being a freight broker.
- South Central College in North Mankato and Faribault, MN – This college also offers both online and self-paced courses for freight broker training. You will learn how to get your FMCSA license. You’ll also learn about how to start up your brokerage.
Salary Expectations and Potential for Career Growth
In Minnesota, the average salary for freight brokers is $56,250 a year or $27.04 per hour according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The national average for freight brokers is $54,880.
This salary level can increase with the types of commissions you get.
Also, as you gain more experience, your salary may grow.
The highest-paid freight brokers in Minnesota can earn up to $86,370 annually.
Currently, there are 1,390 freight brokers working in Minnesota.
The job growth rate is about 10% on average nationally.
This means that job growth would produce 9,500 jobs for freight brokers each year.Annual Salary Range: Annual Salary by Location:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Frequently Asked Questions
How profitable are freight brokerages?
It really depends on the experience of the freight broker.
Brokerages can produce high revenues annually.
There are several variables that affect the income stream.
The number of clients, shipment volume, and value of the shipments all come into play.
An inexperienced broker could earn $50,000 a year while a more experienced freight broker could earn $500,000.
How stressful is it to work as a freight broker?
This can be a stressful job.
Tight deadlines, issues with a shipment, all of these things can raise stress levels.
On the other hand, some people thrive in this active environment.
Is it hard to be a freight broker?
It can be a challenging job.
Building clients’ trust takes time.
Also setting up reliable shippers can also take time when you are getting started.
How long does it take to be able to work as a freight broker?
That really depends on if you just go through the process or decide to pursue an educational program.
College programs will extend the time and costs, but they’re very helpful.
Freight Broker Info by State
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia