How to Become a Freight Broker in North Carolina
Freight brokers play an integral role in the process of transporting freight from point A to point B. If a shipping company is in need of a carrier, they may not have the time or resources to do the proper research in order to find a carrier who is responsible and reliable. Instead, freight brokers are just one call away, and since doing the research is part of their job function, they can make seamless connections between both parties. Freight brokers will also need to communicate frequently with both carriers and shippers to ensure expectations are being met. To assist with these duties, freight agents will work for brokers as independent contractors, helping to ensure that business practices are effective and highly functional.
Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in North Carolina
On a state-level, there are no laws in place for freight brokerage. Instead, all freight brokers must meet national standards, which will require you to earn a high school diploma or equivalent. Additionally, you’ll need to obtain a government-issued license to practice. This license is commonly referred to as a Broker Authority license or Motor Carrier Operating Authority license.
There are no requirements to complete a post-secondary education program, earn certification or complete an internship program; however, each of these options will be great additions to your resume. Moreover, finding a professional who is willing to be your mentor is another way to learn the tricks of the trade before entering the field.
North Carolina Schools for Freight Brokers
Post-secondary education may be necessary for some, while others may feel they can succeed without it. If you are in favor of learning as much as you can in a curriculum-based setting, you may find one of the programs below to be appealing:
- Freight Broker Boot Camp allows students six months of full online access to financial strategies, negotiating methods, workflow diagrams, training articles and much more for a price of $98. Students will acquire the skills to enter the industry within just 30 days of study.
- Brooke Training offers ree tuition to veterans who qualify. The program also offers all students job placement assistance upon course completion. In-person and online courses are available for both new and advanced freight brokers.
- Freight Movers School also allows students to complete courses either in-person, in states like Texas and Georgia, or online. Areas of study include improving sales and brokerage basics.
Certifications for Becoming a Freight Broker in North Carolina
The licensing process for freight brokers is overseen by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). These national regulations require that all freight brokers first register their company as a business before applying for a license. Next, you must obtain a U.S. Department of Transportation number. You will then submit this number, along with an application and $300 application fee, to the FMCSA. You will receive approval within four to six weeks of submitting all the required information. All licensed freight brokers must also carry a $75,000 surety bond at all times.
You an become a Certified Transportation Broker by sitting for the exam administered by the Transportation Intermediaries Association. This certification is not required but may help new freight brokers land coveted positions within the industry.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
Freight brokers in North Carolina earned about $20.37 per hour on average, which is equivalent to an annual income of $42,370, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data from 2017. During the same year, the top 10 percent of freight brokers in this state earned an annual income of $60,120.
BLS figures indicate that during 2016, there were 2,600 freight brokers employed in this state. By 2026, this number is expected to rise to 2,920, signifying a 12.3 percent expansion in the job market during this 10-year period.
Working as a Freight Broker in North Carolina
Charlotte is the most highly populated city in North Carolina by far, making it the city where the highest paid freight brokers can be found working in this state.
Freight brokers may opt to work for existing brokerage companies, or they may choose to work as entrepreneurs. Choosing to work for a brokerage company may mean that some of the tougher duties, like building a client database, is already done for you. While the entrepreneurial route will allow you to be more in control, it will also require more work on your end, at least initially. If you’re prepared to do the work, you can begin to turn profits quickly.
This career field will continue to grow in the coming years, so if you’re interested, now is an opportune time to get started.