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5 Things Freight Agents Should Do to Make 2016 the Best Year Yet [Infographic]

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If 2015 wasn’t what you expected, then it’s time to look at your business and see where to do better. Even if you had a good year, you should still examine all of your policies and vendors to make sure you’re getting the most out of your investments. Make 2016 a banner year when you consider these five things that Freight-Tec offers to ensure your success, and see why we are considered the best freight broker.

  1. Choose a broker that won’t compete with you. We don’t have internal agents who could undercut you. Even better, it’s guaranteed in writing.
  2. Don’t worry about losing the business you’ve already earned. We won’t steal your customers, because the only new business we get is from you. We don’t bite the hand that feeds.
  3. Cover your risks as an agent and reduce your stress. Let a broker back up your business with insurance and bonds that protect you and your clients.
  4. Don’t sign a non-compete contract and have your hands tied. Agents who work with us don’t have binding contracts to prevent them from acting in their own best interest.
  5. Get comprehensive back office support. We have more than 30 years of experience in the industry and we provide our expertise and support to every agent who works with us. Instead of worrying about overhead, you can grow your business because you have the time to focus on it.

If you’ve ever said to yourself that there has to be a better way of doing business, check out Freight-Tec and see how we do it. We work hard to make sure that our agents are successful, because your success is the only way to our success. Our goal is to ensure that each agent has the support he or she requires to get the job done well. We make sure the agents who bring us business get commission splits well above average, up to 70 percent going to the agent in some instances.

Make a Better Choice

From back office support to insurance and bonding, we have better solutions for independent freight agents. If you’re tired of working with brokers who use your expertise for cheap labor, ask us about our agent program. With our payment options, reliable service, and non-compete contract, you are sure to recognize the benefits we offer to experienced agents who are hard working. NASTC recognizes us as a “Best Broker.” Inc. Magazine named our company as one of its Top 100 Brokers. We’re also approved by the U.S. Military. With credentials like that, you can be confident that we’ll treat you right. There’s a reason we are known as the best freight broker in the industry. Call us to learn more today (800) 296-0670.

Things Carriers Should Know: Load Coverage and Getting Paid

 

 

Over the years, the government has placed restrictions on drivers to keep the roads safe. It’s easy to think that the only thing our legislators care about is the other person, but they also consider protecting drivers against unethical brokers. In the Motor Carrier Protection Act of 2010, Congress passed laws which related to the trucking industry.

What Is the Motor Carrier Act?

The new rules that have been going into effect since the bill was passed are designed to protect truckers. The industry was rife with brokers who didn’t pay on time, or even filed bankruptcy before making payments to carriers. One major change of the Act was to increase the surety bond from $10,000 to $75,000. It also:

  • Increased penalties for brokers who operate without a license
  • Created licensing requirements for brokers that must be renewed annually
  • Created guidelines for the companies that provide bonds to brokers
  • Established clarity in the industry, concerning who must have the broker’s license and bonds when arranging freight

What Does This Mean for Carriers?

Carriers have more protection when taking a load. Freight Tec takes this law seriously and maintains a $100,000 bond and ensures that its carriers get paid for each load in a timely fashion. We carried this bond amount before it was required to demonstrate the creditworthiness of our company. You can depend on quick payment from us.

Working With a Legitimate Broker

Even with the Motor Carrier Act, there are still brokers who try to take advantage of carriers. Inbound Logistics, providing industry information since 1981, still advises that carriers know the broker who they are using. Ask these questions before signing with a broker:

  1. Is the broker registered with the proper authorities? Freight Tec maintains all applicable licenses.
  2. Does the broker carry insurance? Freight Tec maintains a policy, which can be checked through the insurance company to make sure it’s in effect.
  3. Does the broker have a surety bond? As mentioned, Freight Tec maintains a surety bond of $100,000. This, too, can be verified.
  4. Check to see how long the Broker has been in business. MC numbers are a good indication of how long a company has been in business.
  5. Check with industry loadboards’ credit ratings and reports about the broker before you work with them.

Whether you’re an owner-operator working with one of our agents or have a full fleet of trucks that provide shipping for our clients, you are going to get paid. We want to take care of you. Trust us, not because we say that you can, but because we back up our words with the licenses and bonds to ensure you won’t lose money, and because we’ve been doing treating carriers right for 25+ years.

How to Keep a Freight Agent Happy

The logistics industry is booming. Even with all the regulations and rules implemented for carriers, brokers, and agents, there are still unethical brokers who take advantage of their agents or carriers. Some brokers don’t provide agents with the tools they need. Even worse, their internal agents may even be competing with outside independent agents hired by the broker.

At Freight Tec, we’re revolutionizing the industry. Instead of using outside agents for lead generation or extra business for an internal brokerage operation, we depend solely on outside agents for our business. This removes the conflict of interest so prevalent in the logistics business. Outside agents should never have to compete against — or be at risk of competing against — an internally owned brokerage department. We know that when we treat our agents well, we don’t have to worry about losing them. The success of our agents increases our success.

How We’re Different When It Comes to Our Agents

  • We pay weekly and have a high split with commissions.
  • Agents do not sign a non-compete.
  • We don’t have an internal brokerage, sales, or agent dept. We only have outside agents.
  • Freight Tec gives our agents the tools they need to succeed through training and software in order to work with our clients and carriers.
  • We provide all operational insurances, authorities, software, systems, all back office support, and more to our agents. All of this allows them to focus on running and growing their business, while lowering their risk and making more money.

At Freight Tec, our stability and credibility helps our agents grow their own business. We lend our brand and reputation to help agents succeed. We are different from other freight brokers because the success of our agents is built into our company mission. There are many ways to manage our costs, and we won’t cut into the profits of our agents to increase our bottom line. We know that ensuring high commission splits with our agents, while providing top support 24/7/365 and protecting their customer relationships and business is the best win/win scenario for all.

Keeping agents happy and secure is one way we know we have a quality team. We believe that freight agents are the foundation of the 3PL and Logistics industry. Although we expect a lot from our agents, we have built a culture of support where agents can expect a lot from us. Our brand is built on agent success. We avoid activities that conflict with the interests of our agents.

See How We’re Different

Freight brokers need agents. In order to get the best agents to work with our team, we do our best to fully support them. Choose to come to our team and work with us to see the difference we’ve made in the industry. We make promises we can keep and back them up in writing. Request more information from our team so that you can see for yourself, and make the choice to work with us. Partner with us for your success. You will always be priority #1 to us.

Aggressive Agent Recruiting

Agents in this industry are continually solicited by independent recruiters, company recruiters, brokers, carriers, carrier/brokers, and other related companies.

When agents get these calls, they can expect to be flattered, offered gifts, cash, and promised the moon.

With companies aggressively coming after agents, some offers may be so incredible sounding, that many will ask:

  • “This deal is so sweet for me, what’s in it for them…?”
  • “How can they possibly make this a win/win for both of us? They are making ludicrous offers and promises.”
  • “Is this one of those deals, that sounds too good to be true, and is?”
  • “Can I trust this company/person?”
  • “What should I think of this, what should I do with this?”

It is very common to feel flattered, surprised, and blown away with how good the offers may sound.

Wise agents will recognize and understand the tactics being used on them, and take time to step away. They can then scrutinize and analyze the offer and compare what has been said, with common sense and logic. If the offer passes the common sense evaluation, agents should, in order to protect themselves, get a copy of the contract and do the following:

  • Spend the time and money to review it with an experienced attorney.
  • Research the person and company making the offer.
  • check with the BBB and look for news and reports filed online about the offering company.

In general, agents should do intensive research and verification of the offering company because their future and business depends on it.

Signing on with the wrong company is a death sentence for an agent’s business.

There are thousands of agents in our industry who have worked for companies that ultimately stole their business, or large parts of it.

A common offer from an aggressive recruiter is to give an agent a “sign on bonus” for a five figure sum of money. The catch is that it’s not a bonus you get for free. It is almost always a loan which could be forgiven as long as you meet its terms. These “sign on bonuses” come with heavy strings attached. Remember common sense, NO company will ever give you free money. There are always strings attached.

Those strings usually include:

  • Minimum performance requirements (which typically pay the lender back many times over what they loaned to you).
  • Exclusive contract commitment for a set number of years – commonly 2-5 years.
  • A non-compete agreement – this one is especially dangerous as you have received “consideration” or money.
  • Conditions which allow them to go after your business should you try to leave before your 2-5 years is up, or if you fail to meet any other requirement in the “sign on bonus” contract.

Summary:

As you are solicited by many people trying to convince you to make a move, be very careful. It’s OK to be flattered, but don’t let yourself be blinded. Don’t make hasty decisions about your business. Get an attorney’s opinion.

Remember, you have something of great value. Don’t give your hard work away, and don’t let anyone take it away from you.

Best Podcasts for Truckers

Listening to the same music over and over gets old when you’re out on the road all the time. It isn’t always possible to be driving when your favorite radio program comes on, but it’s important to keep your mind active and stay up with industry information. Podcasts are a form of broadcasting that you can download to your smartphone or computer to listen to on your schedule. Both Android and iTunes offer podcasts through their store. Instead of waiting for the radio to provide the show you want to hear, download some of these podcasts while you’re behind the wheel.

Trucker Dump

Todd McCann has been on the road with his co-driver since 1997. He’s going to talk to you straight about trucking. If you’ve ever felt all alone when you’re on the road, check out his podcasts that cover everything from giving directions to why truckers don’t have butts.

This American Life

Ira Glass is the host of this podcast which gives stories about individuals around the world. Although it’s not directly related to trucking, you’ll laugh and cry while learning more about different cultures and traditions.

Trucking Podcast

This podcast bills itself as “probably the best guys’ podcast in the world.” Buck Ballard and his son host the show. They’re both truckers, and they’ll cover whatever they find interesting. It’s a family-friendly site that deals with everything motors and wheels. If you’re into cars, trucks, and racing, you’ll love these two guys.

Ask the Trucker

Allen Smith is an opinionated veteran driver who is trying to change the industry, one podcast at a time. The last couple of months, he’s been focused on health issues, but he talks about everything related to driving and business. He’s probably the leading blogger in the trucking industry. You can’t go wrong downloading his show to listen to when you’re on a long stretch of highway. Smith is going to tell it like it is. Learn more about the best freight broker and know how to do business.

Good Job, Brain!

Pick up some knowledge with this podcast that gives you offbeat news, trivia, and general information. Learning is one way to prevent boredom, and as you age, it’s important to your cognitive health. Keep your brain engaged and have plenty to talk about when you get back home with this informative and fun podcast.

Notes in Spanish

In today’s society, knowing another language makes you even more valuable in your field. Listen to a podcast that teaches you Spanish, French, or German. You don’t need to be fluent, just learn some basics in case you ever need it.