Not all freight brokers are the same. This becomes painfully evident when you’ve hired the wrong one. Shipping doesn’t need to be complicated, but you do want to make sure you have the best company handling all of your freight forwarding and logistics services. Before you start asking around or scouring the Internet for truck companies, here are a few things you need to consider first.
The type of materials you need to ship will often determine how you’re going to get them there. Whether you require full truckload or LTL (“less than truckload”), the size of your shipment is the first thing to factor into the company you plan to hire.
Some freight brokers specialize in certain shipping methods while others can handle various practices under one roof. Before you hire anyone, you should think about what you intend to ship. This information can help you save money in the long run when you hire the proper service to handle your freight.
Are you going to require a one-time broker who handles sporadic shipments whenever you need them, or will you require a service to move your goods on a more routine basis? If you have shipments that need to go out on a weekly or monthly basis, then you’ll want to choose a company that can easily handle the steady volume.
The location where you’re shipping from and the destination where it’s going can play a large role in the type of broker you select and the rates you will pay for service. You could select a regional carrier that services a specific part of the country instead of a national carrier who may charge higher rates in that area. Hiring the right freight broker means having a company that knows when to hire one over the other to save time and money.
The old adage applies here as it does just about anywhere else: you get what you pay for. When you are weighing the cost of hiring one freight broker over another, consider the type of service you are getting for your money. Hiring a cut-rate company to save a few bucks might cost you more in the long run with lost or damaged shipments, invoice problems, or worse.
Many different freight brokers offer certain types of service that allow you, the client, to be as deeply involved or completely removed from the shipping process as you choose. You can find brokers who let you set up all your shipments yourself, select normal or express shipping, track invoices and shipments, print bills of lading, and so on, all from your office or via mobile device.
There are also brokers who handle all of those things for you so you don’t have to worry about it. Decide how involved you wish to be in the process and then decide on the right freight broker.