Becoming a Freight Broker in Colorado – Get Your License
Freight Brokers are the professionals in charge of connecting clients to carrier companies. When manufacturers or shippers want to have their cargo transported by land, they get in touch with Freight Brokers. They then employ different methods to figure out what transport companies, or carriers, would be most appropriate for said client. Some of the factors that need to be considered are cargo type, dates of shipment, and payment rate – all of which are negotiated by the Freight Broker.
If you’re planning to dive into the world of Freight Brokering, read on for a couple of essential things you should know. Although it takes hard work and dedication to become a Freight Broker, it can be a lucrative and rewarding career for the right person. To get you started, here are some essential qualities every Freight Broker should possess, regardless of their education and experience in the field:
- Solid communication skills to understand client needs and successfully negotiate pricing with carrier companies
- Excellent time management skills
- Meticulous planning and organization abilities
- The ability to remain calm and level-headed when unexpected situations arise
- The capacity to make quick and effective decisions
Freight Broker Licenses and Certifications in Colorado
There are no specific Freight Broker licenses needed to operate in Colorado. However, all professionals must apply for a permit from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The FMCSA is an organization within the U.S. Department of Tourism that creates and enforces regulations to ensure that carrier companies operate safely and efficiently. Here are the steps you need to take to obtain your federal Freight Broker license:
- Apply for a USDOT (Department of Transportation) number through the Unified Registration System (URS) of the FMCSA if you are a first-time licensure applicant
- Obtain a Surety Bond (Form BMC-84) or Trust Fund Agreement (Form BMC-85) that is worth $75,000 or higher
- Appoint a Process Agent and apply for their registration through FMCSA Form BOC-3 (Your Process Agent is the legal representative in the state where you will be operating as a broker.)
- Pay the $300 application fee and wait 4-6 weeks for your license to be processed
As of this writing, certifications are not required to work in this profession. Despite that, earning a Freight Broker certificate can be beneficial when you start working in the industry. Aside from the additional knowledge and experience, certifications are also tangible proof of your competency and capability in the industry. The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) offers courses that make you a Certified Transportation Broker (CTB) at the end. This is the highest and most widely recognized certification for brokers in the country.
As with certifications, there are also no educational requirements needed to work as a Freight Broker. However, employers would be most likely to hire those with at least a High School or GED diploma. Attending training and relevant classes is also necessary for learning all you can about the field to become a successful Freight Broker.
Relevant Freight Broker Education in Colorado
Most of the Freight Broker programs offered across the country are based entirely on an online platform. This is convenient for those whose schedules and lifestyles are more appropriate for online classes. Here are a couple of institutions located around Colorado to get you started on your journey:
- Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO, offers an online course in Freight Brokering. The comprehensive course includes everything you need to know about the field, including laws and business practices for setting up your brokerage.
- Brooke Training is a Freight Broker training school that offers a comprehensive course on Freight Brokering taught by seasoned professionals and industry experts in the field. Aside from the basics of the job, lessons on sales and marketing are also part of their curriculum.
Career Outlook and Salary of Freight Brokers
According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), approximately 95,600 Freight Brokers are employed in the United States as of this writing. The long-term (2020-2030) growth rate for this profession is at a national average of 10 percent, the usual growth rate of most jobs. Around 9,500 new Freight Broker jobs are projected to be available each year.
A Freight Broker working in the United States earns an average hourly wage of $21.04, which amounts to $54,880 per year. Years of experience in the industry and the commissions they earn per year will also add a substantial amount to that number. Higher-earning Freight Brokers have reported annual wages amounting up to $69,890.
Freight Broker Opportunities in Colorado
Freight Brokers are crucial when it comes to the transportation of goods throughout the country. In Colorado, numerous brokerages and logistics companies are looking to hire competent and qualified Freight Brokers in larger cities like Denver and Aurora.