How to Become a Freight Broker in New Jersey – Get Your License

Becoming a freight broker doesn’t take years of school or a degree. All you need to get started is a high school diploma, a few months of training, and a license. As a freight broker, you’ll coordinate all aspects of shipments, either working independently or for a larger company. In New Jersey, you can expect to find plenty of opportunities in this industry along with a good salary.

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What is a Freight Broker?

A freight broker is a logistic specialist who matches shippers to carriers. They maintain databases of carriers and take orders from clients who need to ship products or goods. They plan and monitor the shipment from start to finish to make sure both sides are satisfied.

These are some of the typical daily duties of a freight broker:

  • Take orders from clients
  • Not all the details, special requests, and budget of the client
  • Match a client to a suitable carrier to meet their needs and budget
  • Negotiate with the carrier for the right price
  • Plan and organize the details of the shipment
  • Monitor and track the shipment, keeping the client up to date on its progress
  • Troubleshoot any problems that arise
  • Work with carriers to fill empty slots in their shipments
  • Take payment and bill clients

Freight brokering doesn’t require a lengthy education, but it does take an organized, detail-oriented individual to do it well. You must be prepared to communicate, adapt to changing situations, and work independently.

How Do You Become a Freight Broker in New Jersey?

There are only federal requirements for working as a freight broker. New Jersey does not require any additional licensing or credentials. To become a freight broker in the state, follow these steps:

  1. Complete a freight broker training program, which typically takes six months or less
  2. Apply through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) for a U.S. Department of Transportation number.
  3. Purchase a Trust Fund Agreement or Surety Bond worth $75,000 or more. This is required for FMCSA licensing.
  4. Assign a process agent, which can be you or someone else, by completing FMCSA form BOC-3.
  5. Apply to the FMCSA with the $300 fee for your license.

If you plan to start your own freight brokering business, you should register for a legal entity, such as an LLC (limited liability company). You’ll do this through the state of New Jersey.

To set yourself apart from other freight brokers, you may also want to become a Certified Transportation Broker (CTB). This is a nationally recognized credential from the Transportation Intermediaries Association.

Freight Broker Programs in New Jersey

Getting a license to work as a freight broker does not require a degree or specific education. It is a good idea to start your new career with a short training program to learn the basics and to start the licensing process. Try these programs in New Jersey:

  • New Jersey City University. Enroll in this online program to learn from experts in freight brokering. You have six months to complete it at your own pace.
  • Saint Peter’s University. Also entirely online, this program will set you up for success as a small business in freight brokering.
  • Rutgers. To take your career to the next level, this degree program in Purchasing and Supply Chain Management and Freight Broker/Agent Training will give you more options and advancement opportunities.

What is the Outlook for Freight Broker Jobs?

According to the 2020 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for freight brokers nationwide was at 95,600, with robust growth. In New Jersey in 2018, 3,380 people were working as freight brokers. That number is expected to grow by 17%, a faster than average job growth rate.

How Much Can a Freight Broker Earn in New Jersey?

The national median salary in May 2020 was $43,770 per year and $21.04 for freight brokers across the U.S. The compensation varies depending on experience and whether you work for yourself or a company. Average salaries are higher in New Jersey. You can expect an average salary of $47,720 per year in the state.

Working as a Freight Broker in New Jersey

If you plan to set out on your own as a freight broker, you can work anywhere in New Jersey. If you’re not ready to start a business, consider finding employment with an existing company. Here are some examples of recent job listings in the state:

  • Freight broker, RLS Logistics, Mount Laurel
  • Logistics coordinator, Eastern Drayage, Montvale
  • Freight brokerage assistant, Eastern Warehouses, Linden
  • NVOCC and freight forwarding, Express Consolidation Systems, Totowa
  • Transportation sales representative, Specialty Freight Services, Newark

There are plenty of opportunities for both employed and independent freight brokers in New Jersey as this industry continues to grow.