Freight Broker Training in the State of Missouri
Every day, freight brokers play a vital part in the U.S. economy. They do so by making sure that shipping companies find the carriers they need to transport their valuable products. People who join the freight brokering industry enjoy some important advantages. First, they step into a thriving sector of American business. They also receive substantial income and have the freedom of working at home.
Freight brokering is especially appealing for people living in Missouri. Recent figures show that the state exports more than $13 billion dollars in manufactured goods each year. In addition, Missouri is home to more than 6,000 exporting firms. What does this mean for new freight brokers? Plenty of opportunity to establish themselves and create profitable businesses.
What Do You Need to Become a Freight Broker in Missouri?
Missouri does not maintain specific guidelines for who can become a freight broker. Instead, the state relies on nationwide rules established by the federal government. Those rules require two things from prospective brokers. First, you must have a high school diploma or suitable equivalent. You must also hold a federal license.
To obtain your license, you must apply to an agency that forms part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. That agency is called the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Authority, or FMCSA.
To begin the process, you must apply for a registered business name. Once you do so, you’ll receive an official operating number under that name. Next, the FMCSA requires you to pay $300 and apply for a Broker Authority license. (This is also known as an MC authority.)
As part of your Missouri freight broker application, you must also take a couple of additional steps. First, you must show proof of a $75,000 trust fund agreement or surety bond. This shows the government that you hold adequate insurance for your business.
You must also file a Designation of Process Agent form. This form identifies the people who are legally responsible in any court proceedings involving your business. You must designate one such person in every state where you operate a freight brokering office. If you only operate in Missouri, you can act as your sole process agent.
On average, it takes between one and two months for completed applications to go through.
Training Programs for Missouri Freight Brokers
Before you open your brokering business, you should strongly consider undergoing some kind of rigorous training. Effective training covers several crucial areas of concern. That includes:
- Learning the ins and outs of working in the freight brokering industry
- Learning the rules and regulations that govern all industry participants
- Learning best practices for freight broker management
- Learning how to market yourself effectively as a provider of freight brokering services
To make sure you’re properly trained, you can take a course designed for that purpose. The best freight broker courses are created and run by industry specialists who know what you need to succeed. A good example is a program offered at St. Louis Community College. This program, overseen by the experts at Brooke Transportation Training Solutions, provides a full 180 hours of training. In addition, you can choose from any of several online courses.
To find one of these programs near you, enter your zip code in the box below.
As a demonstration of your competency, you can also seek freight broker certification from the Transportation Intermediaries Association, or TIA. In order to receive your TIA certificate, you must pass a Transportation Broker test. You don’t need the TIA’s approval to operate your business. However, brokers who do so can greatly enhance their professional reputations.
How Much Can You Expect to Make as a Missouri Freight Broker?
Established freight brokers in Missouri make an average of almost $44,000 a year. As a newcomer, you can expect to make considerably less. (Nationwide averages for newcomers fall in the range of $26,000 to $27,000.) Top earners in the state can expect to bring in more than $60,000 annually. Some brokers may even reach or exceed a yearly income of $100,000.
Where Do Freight Brokers Operate in Missouri
Freight brokers typically set up shop in or near local population and manufacturing centers. In Missouri, there are three such centers: St. Louis, Springfield and Kansas City. You can also base your business in other locations throughout the state. However, you’ll probably have an easier time establishing yourself in places with plentiful brokering opportunities.