Get Started as a Freight Broker in North Carolina
A freight broker is a middleman who facilitates communication between shippers and carriers. For those with products to ship, a freight broker eliminates tasks such as negotiating with carriers, tracking freight or planning routes. When you become a freight broker, you offer an important service to both carriers and shippers as you negotiate shipping rates and fastest delivery times. You may wish to start your own brokering business, which can be lucrative as you gain experience, or you can find employment opportunities with brokerage firms or transportation companies.
In 2018, North Carolina was the 15th largest state exporter of goods. A record $32.8 billion manufactured goods were shipped the same year, supporting approximately 157,000 jobs. More than 10,700 companies exported from locations in this state in 2016, and approximately 87 percent of these were small and medium-sized businesses.
License Requirements in North Carolina for Freight Brokers
To obtain a license to become a freight broker in North Carolina, you’ll need to file an application with the North Carolina Utilities commission. The original application and five copies are filed with the Commission along with a check or money order for $25. A public hearing is scheduled, but if there are no objections within 10 days, the hearing is cancelled. Upon approval of the application, a bond of no less than $5,000 must be filed with the Utilities Commission.
National standards for becoming a freight broker require at least a high school diploma or the equivalent. Register your brokering business with the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and obtain an operating number. Apply to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Authority (FMSCA) for a Motor Carrier Authority License. Processing takes four to six weeks, and the filing fee is $300.
You’ll also need to obtain general liability and cargo insurance along with a surety bond in the amount of $75,000. Once your application is approved and you’ve completed all these steps, you’re ready to work as a North Carolina freight broker.
North Carolina Freight Broker Training
Formal training to become a freight broker isn’t required but can be a big advantage in thoroughly understanding the industry and in competing in the job market. Top freight broker training programs in this state provide information on transportation laws and regulatory aspects of this career, as well as business and sales skills.
Brooke Transportation Training Solutions offers an excellent online program in a partnership with ed2go. This program was written by freight brokerage specialists and is delivered through colleges throughout the state of North Carolina. Some of the schools that participate in this program include:
- Vance-Granville Community College in Hendersonville
- Central Carolina Community College in Sanford
- Cleveland Community College in Shelby
- UNC Charlotte Continuing Education
Just insert your zip code to find freight broker/agent training near you.
Once you’ve completed a training program, becoming certified is optional but can help to prove your expertise in the field and give you an advantage in the job market. The Transportation Intermediaries Association offers a Certified Transportation Broker exam, which is the highest broker certification in the industry.
Freight Brokers Salary and Earning Potential in North Carolina
The amount of money you can earn as a freight broker in North Carolina can vary widely. In May 2018, the average freight broker in this state earned approximately $45,060, or $21.66 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You’ll also be able to earn commissions above your salary. Many companies offer advancement opportunities, or as your own boss you can gradually expand your business and increase your income. It’s possible to earn over six figures at this profession, especially if you run a home-based business.
A Career as a Freight Broker in North Carolina
Your role as a North Carolina freight broker is a critical part of the transportation industry as you identify transportation and logistics solutions for shipping companies, manufacturers and carriers. You’ll keep track of shipments at all times and keep all parties continuously informed. Large cities such as Charlotte, Raleigh and Greensboro are likely to have the best opportunities for freight brokers, but it’s possible to be very successful at this profession throughout the state of North Carolina.