Freight Broker Training in Massachusetts
A freight broker is a critical part of the transportation industry. When you become a freight broker in Massachusetts, you act as a link that connects shippers and carriers. You’ll arrange transportation for different types of freight, negotiate prices with carriers and keep your client informed from start to finish.
An estimated 113 million jobs were supported by Massachusetts exports in 2016, and this state was the 18th largest exporter of goods in 2018. More than $25.5 billion in manmade American goods were exported from Massachusetts that year. Slightly more than 10,000 companies exported from locations in Massachusetts in 2016, and many of these companies were small and medium-sized businesses.
Freight brokering can be an interesting and lucrative career whether you’re self-employed or work for a company. On this page, you’ll find what you need to know to get started in this exciting profession.
Licensing and Other Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in Massachusetts
You’ll need a high school diploma or the equivalent as well as a license and insurance to work as a freight broker in Massachusetts. While formal training isn’t required, it’s strongly encouraged. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Authority (FMSCA), which is part of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), administers regulations that govern commercial trucking and bus industries.
Start by registering your brokering business name with the USDOT and obtain a USDOT operating number. The next step is to apply to the FMSC for Motor Carrier (MC) Authority (MC) License, which is a key part of becoming registered as a freight broker with the FMSCA. The filing fee is $300, and processing takes approximately four to six weeks.
To work as a freight broker, you’ll need to obtain a $75,000 surety bond along with general liability and cargo insurance. You’ll also need to obtain a processing agent in Massachusetts and in any state where your brokerage will be operating. This is the person who can be served papers if any claims are filed against your brokerage. Once these steps have been completed and your application is approved, you’re ready to work as a freight broker.
Information on Training to be a Freight Broker in Massachusetts
Success in the freight broker industry requires thorough industry knowledge. The best training programs in Massachusetts include information on the regulatory and legal aspects of freight brokering such as learning to understand shipping contracts, negotiate rates, sell your services and manage your business.
Some of the best choices are those that are offered through a partnership between Brooke Transportation Training Solutions and ed2go. While it’s an online program, it’s delivered through community colleges and four-year colleges. Some of the colleges in Massachusetts that participate in this program include:
- Bristol Community College in Fall River
- Bridgewater State College in Bridgewater
- Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School in Bourne
- Bunker Hill Community College in Boston
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As a supplement to your training, you may wish to obtain certification to further demonstrate your knowledge and skills. The Certified Transportation Broker exam is offered through the Transportation Intermediaries Association. Certification is optional but can be an advantage when marketing your skills or home business.
Earnings Potential for Freight Brokers in Massachusetts
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average freight broker in Massachusetts made $44,840 in 2018. As you gain more experience, your salary can go much higher, and commissions have the potential to greatly increase your earnings even more. If you choose to start a home business once you have experience, you may be able to command a much higher income. Many freight brokers earn over six figures each year.
Freight Broker Opportunities in Massachusetts
When you pursue a career as a freight broker in Massachusetts, you’ll play a key role in the efficient transportation of goods by land, sea and air. Your expertise in meeting a shipper’s transportation needs will be highly valued. The best opportunities are likely to be in the largest cities such as Boston, Worcester and Springfield. If you choose to start your own home-based business, you’ll be in a growing, service-based profession with a high earning potential.