Get Freight Broker Training in Florida
Did you know that 85% of Florida’s communities depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods–everything you eat, wear and use was trucked an average of four times before you purchased it? Freight brokers play integral part in colossal logistics and transportation industry. Becoming a freight broker in Florida represents a career choice with loads of potential.
Florida exports around $60 billion worth or around 85 million tons of goods each year, but there are over 700 million tons of goods moving within Florida in the same time period, getting food, and other products to the large urban populations around Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa or Orlando.
What’s a Freight Broker?
Freight brokers and freight agents work for shippers who need trucks to carry their goods to their destination. They help match loads to carriers. Carriers range from large multinational trucking companies to owner operators, who may be based in Florida or need their truck loaded in Florida to avoid an empty leg to their journey home. Brokers are experts in getting the goods onto the right type of truck for timely delivery and agreeing the shipment contract between the shipper and the carrier.
The difference between freight brokers and agents is that the broker needs to be licensed and provide guarantees of payment. A freight agent does not.
How to Become a Licensed Freight Broker in Florida?
There are no academic requirements for Florida freight brokers other than holding a high school diploma, GED or equivalent.
To get a freight broker license in Florida you need to register your business name with the United States Department of Transport who will issue you with a U.S DoT number. Then you need to apply to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) for your license, known as a Motor Carrier Authority. The application process takes four to six weeks. Before you’re ready to go, you need to demonstrate to FMCSA that you have $75,000 surety bond and appropriate general liability and cargo insurance. Last, FMCSA will need to know your designated a freight agent in each of the states in which you intend to operate.
While there is no obligation to have formal freight broker training, getting yourself on a professional program is highly recommended.
What do Students Learn of a Freight Broking Course?
The best freight broker schools will prepare a student to find an entry-level freight broker job or, more commonly, to run their own freight brokerage. This is the ambition of most Florida students embarking on a course.
The course curriculum will therefore include components such as legal and regulatory, how to broker freight deals, how to run your business and how market your business.
On the legal and regulatory front, you’ll learn about transportation law, the obligations and liabilities of each of the parties to the shipment deal and the important elements of the shipping contract.
Brokering freight involves finding loads that need delivery, finding trucks that are appropriate and available to carry each load, negotiating shipping rates and other delivery conditions, monitoring the delivery along its route and handling any claims arising from delays, short deliveries or damaged goods. You’ll need to know how to perform all these tasks, as well as how to use online tools such as load boards, and how to build your own trucker database.
You’ll need to learn the day to day operations of freight brokerage, such as record- and bookkeeping, accounting and financial control.
Freight broker training courses will usually teach sales and marketing as this business is highly competitive. You’ll have to develop sound phone and email skills, understand advertising and learn some tricks for marketing and prospecting new clients efficiently.
Freight Broker Schools in Florida
Developed in partnership with Brooke Training Solutions, ed2go provides an excellent freight broker/agent training program that is available at over 2,000 universities, community and technical colleges nationwide. Led by Jan and Jeff Roach, graduates of Baylor University and Abilene Christian University respectively, the program contains 180 course hours and can be completed in six-months, but you can study at your own pace. In Florida this program is available at colleges including Florida International University and Miami Dade College in Miami, Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Valencia College and University of Central Florida in Orlando and the University of North Florida and Florida State College in Jacksonville, among many others. There also many freight broker/agent programs in Georgia.
To find a school offering this quality freight broker/agent course near you, enter your zip code in the box below.
How much do freight brokers make in Florida?
When you become a freight broker, you have two options: to get a job with a freight brokerage firm as an employee, or to up your own freight broker business.
As an employee, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, entry-level cargo and freight agents made $21,760 per year in 2018. Top earners had salaries of around $62,250. The average was $40,810. Their take home pay was higher than this, as commission payments for brokers are a significant increment on their base salary.
Setting as your own brokerage, while assuming more risk and some start-up capital, can be very profitable, with many brokers making six-figure annual incomes.