How to Become a Freight Broker in Connecticut
If price haggling is second-nature to you, you may enjoy a career as a freight broker. Negotiating for the best possible profits is a huge component of becoming successful in this industry. Freight brokers serve as middlemen between shipping companies and carriers, making connections between the two. A carrier may wish to transport a load for a price higher than the one you’re offering, so you’ll need to know how to communicate strategically in order to turn profits. Freight agents may be of assistance in this process, since they typically work for brokers as independent contractors who communicate with customers on a daily basis.
Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in Connecticut
In Connecticut, like all other U.S. states, there are currently no laws in place to govern this career field. National law, however, requires that all freight brokers earn a high school diploma or equivalent, along with obtaining a government-issued Broker Authority license (also known as a Motor Carrier Operating Authority license) to practice.
Developing your skillset to put you on the right track for success may involve enrolling in a training program, completing an internship, finding a mentor or earning certification. You will be able to find employment without taking advantage of any of these options; however, you may find that you are able to advance more quickly if you take these initiatives.
Connecticut Schools for Freight Brokers
Freight brokers can find employment or even start their own brokerage company without completing any post-secondary training. But if you’d like to learn more about the trade before entering the field, you may be interested in one of the programs below.
- Load Training allows tudents the choice to complete courses in-person or online. In-person training sessions last for just five days and are held in the cities of Phoenix, Houston and Atlanta. Students will learn how to respond to inquiries from carriers and shippers, how to create a truck availability database and more.
- Brooke Transportation Training Solutions offers free tuition to qualifying veterans, and all students receive job placement assistance upon course completion. Courses take place both in-person and online. Areas of study include both basic and advanced brokerage techniques.
- Freight Movers School also allows students to complete courses both in-person and online. There is a course on brokerage basics for new freight brokers and a course on improving sales for freight brokers who are more experienced. In-person courses currently take place in Texas and Georgia.
Certifications for Becoming a Freight Broker in Connecticut
The licensing process for freight brokers is overseen by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
To obtain your license, you will first need to register your company as a business. After doing so, you will obtain a U.S. Department of Transportation number. This number, an application and $300 application fee must then be submitted to the FMCSA. Within four to six weeks, if your application has been approved, you will receive your license to practice. All freight brokers will need to carry a $75,000 surety bond at all times, according to national law.
Those who wish to earn certification may be interested in sitting for the Certified Transportation Brokers exam. This certification, offered exclusively through the Transportation Intermediaries Association, is not required by law.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data from May 2015, freight brokers in the U.S. earned an average annual income of $44,470 at that time.
The BLS also states that there were about 460 freight brokers working in Connecticut during 2016. By 2026, this number is expected to jump to 500, adding 40 workers to the field over this 10-year period.
Working as a Freight Broker in Connecticut
Freight brokers will understand the need to work in areas that are highly populated. These are the places with the greatest amount of freight distribution, meaning they will also likely be the cities where freight brokers are most in demand. In Connecticut, these cities are Bridgeport, Stamford and New Haven.
Working at an established brokerage company with a proven track record of success is an ideal way to start off in this industry. If you want to have more control over your salary and work schedule, you may be interested in starting your own brokerage company. Before doing so, make sure that you understand important strategies, techniques and other tricks of the trade so that you can hit the ground running with a solid foundation of expertise.