There’s no end-all, be-all answer to the question of how to get freight from shippers — especially considering the constantly changing technology and culture around us. To enjoy sustained success, freight agents must be familiar with sales techniques that have worked in the past and ready to integrate new tools at a moment’s notice.
Not every load can be that highly sought, top-paying “big fish.” Even so, it takes a fairly consistent stream of well-paying loads to build a career as a thriving freight agent. Too many inefficient loads will keep your business spinning in circles rather than moving forward.
It takes a well-thought plan to find loads that pay well. Here are several ideas for how to make it happen:
Freight agents don’t physically hand their customers a product, and in many cases they don’t even get the chance to meet them face to face, but that doesn’t make their customer service any less important. In the shipping industry, thoughtfully crafted customer service is often the difference between a loyal clientele and constant, frustrating turnover.
So many online freight agent job postings, so little time. A professional agent looking for his or her next job can quickly become lost in a virtual sea of seemingly wonderful online opportunities. They always sound so great, right?
Before jumping into a new position, it makes sense to consider what to look for in a freight agent opportunity. There are many brokers to choose from, but no two options are created equal.
Here are several tips on how to select the best freight agent opportunities:
Becoming an independent freight agent isn’t for every single person in the industry. However, if planned well, the move from internal account representative or logistics coordinator to independent agent can be an incredibly liberating experience, giving you the freedom to concentrate on what you do best: find and cultivate leads into customers.
If trust really is one of the main tent poles of a good relationship (and we believe that it is), then what does that mean for the bond between a freight broker and its freight agents? What does it take for a broker to create the type of trust necessary for both parties to move forward in full confidence — lacking any uneasiness?
Finding freight brokers is easy. But finding freight brokers you can trust? That’s a much more difficult task — although not impossible. Some freight brokers out there won’t utilize the unfair tactics that many of their competitors embrace.
If you’re a freight agent, it’s worth a little extra time in the selection process to make sure you find a broker who enables you to rest easy. Pinpointing the right broker is much easier if you enter your search with a good idea of what to look for, such as:
Peace of mind is one of those precious commodities that’s difficult to come by and even harder to guarantee. In the world of freight brokers, agents, shippers and carriers, peace of mind can serve as a welcomed constant amid a flurry of variables.
If you’re considering working with a freight broker, getting the company to sign an iron-clad non-compete is one of the best ways to find peace of mind in a sometimes tumultuous industry. Protecting your clients should be a priority not just for you, but for your broker as well.
A non-compete, non-disclosure document such as this one is simple yet powerful, stating the purpose and details as clearly as possible and emphasizing the interests of freight agents.
Compared to the few minutes it takes to review and sign a non-compete document, the impact is substantial. The benefits of a well-crafted non-compete include:
- Protection against taking or transferring brokers, and against jeopardizing an agent’s business
- Guaranteed right to take their business with them when the partnership ends
- Assurance that the agent has sole ownership of his or her business; no other entity has a prior right of ownership or shared ownership
- Protection of an agent’s business from the company’s internal brokerage and/or associated entities within a specified period of time after the partnership ends
- Mutual agreement that the agent and broker will not jeopardize each other’s business during their business relationship and afterward, for a specified period of time
- Monetary compensation if the non-compete agreement is breached by either party
Unwillingness by a freight agent or brokerage to adhere to guidelines such as those listed above raises questions about their intentions and integrity. Respect should go both ways in any relationship — and the agent-broker bond is no exception.
At Freight Tec, we sign a non-compete every time we partner with a freight agent. It’s a small but important component of building peace of mind.
The trucking industry shows no sign of slowing down, but the number of brokers who treat their agents with respect seems to decreasing. It’s a competitive market. Freight agents need to be smart about doing business with a broker. Our business model is different than most other logistics companies. Here’s what you shouldn’t be doing, because we do it better.
Within the transportation industry, freight broker is one of the fastest growing professions, in large part due to the earning potential available to agents. So what can you expect from the profession? Tracy, one of our very own independent agents, tells us firsthand her experience as an agent.
Discover what could be your future in the transportation industry by listening to her personal story.