How to Become a Freight Broker in Colorado
Being a freight broker means working in a fast-paced yet flexible job environment that always provides a new challenge. Brokers organize transportation for goods, negotiate prices for the shipments and inform their clients of the shipments’ progress as they are hauled. Freight brokers also oversee freight agents, who work as independent contractors, completing sales and finding carriers for goods. Agents have fewer requirements to begin working than brokers, who must carry insurance and a license.
Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in Colorado
Colorado freight brokers must meet federal requirements. These include having a high school diploma or equivalent, cargo and general liability insurance and a $75,000 surety bond.
Brokers in Colorado do not need any additional certifications to operate in the state. Some may however choose to enroll in a training program, which can help them learn some of the skills necessary to be a successful broker. Many programs assist with job placement as well.
Colorado Schools for Freight Brokers
Prospective freight brokers who are interested in learning more about the industry and the skills that will help them thrive within it should consider taking formal freight broker classes. The following programs are available to new brokers in Colorado:
- Load Training. The oad Training program is available online and includes training videos, study guides, a certificate of completion, testing and consulting. The school owns its own brokerage, offering students the chance to learn how professional brokers and agents are conducting their sales.
- Brooke Training rooke Training is a popular online learning program. It offers students a self-paced class that can be completed within six months. Graduates have access to Resource Fridays, the school’s weekly online seminar for job advice and recruitment.
Certifications for Becoming a Freight Broker in Colorado
To become a freight broker, applicants should register the name of their business and get a U.S. Department of Transportation number. With this information, they can apply for a license from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Applicants should also send in an application fee. After the paperwork has been reviewed and approved, the license will be issued.
Brokers do not need to take a formal licensing exam. However, they may choose to take the Certified Transportation Brokers exam, which is administered by the Transportation Intermediaries Association. This test serves as a formal acknowledgement of skills and can provide a competitive advantage.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
The freight industry is growing at a steady pace as more and more people open up online businesses and brick-and-mortar shops. This increase in commerce requires an increase in the amount of freight being moved throughout the country. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the freight industry is expected to grow by about 29 percent by 2020.
Nationally, freight broker salaries average $43,926 per year. Brokers in Colorado, meanwhile, typically enjoy higher salaries of $51,790 on average.
Working as a Freight Broker in Colorado
Freight brokers have two options when it comes to beginning their careers. Some choose to start their own businesses, an ideal option for people who enjoy entrepreneurship and would like to work from home.
Other brokers join an existing business. This can provide some extra financial stability and regular routine. It also allows brokers to focus solely on the business of brokering, rather than on marketing, operations and other tasks for which they would be responsible as a business owner. Brokerages in larger cities generally offer the highest salaries.
Brokers pursuing either option will find themselves working in an ever-changing environment. They will be responsible for tracking prices, finding deals and ensuring their clients’ satisfaction with their services. The career is an excellent one for people who enjoy doing something new every day and balancing multiple projects at once.