How to Become a Freight Broker in Oklahoma
Shipping companies often do not have the time to find carriers to transport their loads. This is because the process of finding a carrier can be quite extensive. The research and verification process for finding professional carriers is taken care of by freight brokers. These freight brokers help make the proper connections between shippers and carriers, taking a percentage of the carrier’s compensation as their pay.
Freight agents are not required to earn any licensing and will typically work directly under a freight broker, helping connect shippers with carriers.
Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in Oklahoma
When it comes to freight brokerage, there are no state laws in place to set standards for those aspiring to enter the career field. There are, however, national laws, which require all freight brokers in the U.S. to first earn their high school diploma or equivalent. Additionally, you will need to obtain a government-issued Broker Authority license before practicing.
While you won’t need to complete a post-secondary training program, it might help a great deal with boosting your skills before you enter this field. You may also choose to obtain certification, find a mentor or complete an internship program for freight brokers.
Oklahoma Schools for Freight Brokers
Some colleges and universities may offer freight broker training as continuing education courses. Other training programs exist online, like the ones listed below:
- Load Training allows tudents to complete courses either online or in-person in cities like Phoenix, Houston and Atlanta. In-person training sessions last five days at a time. Topics of study include how to create a truck availability database, how to respond to inquiries from carriers and shippers, and much more.
- Brooke Transportation Training Solutions also offers both in-person and online courses. Veterans who are qualified will be allowed to complete courses free of charge. Students will learn basic brokerage skills and advanced techniques. Job placement assistance is also available to all students upon course completion.
- Freight Movers School offers courses on improving sales for freight brokers who are more advanced. Courses are also available to freight brokers who are new to the trade. In-person courses are available in Texas and Georgia, while online courses can be taken from anywhere in the world.
Certifications for Becoming a Freight Broker in Oklahoma
Anyone who wishes to enter this career field must follow the rules and regulations enforced by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
To obtain your Broker Authority license (also known as a Motor Carrier Operating Authority license), you must first register your company as a business. The next step is to obtain your U.S. Department of Transportation number. You will then be required to submit this number, an application and a $300 application fee, to the FMCSA. Applications typically require a processing time of 4 to 6 weeks before receiving approval. When your application has been approved, you will receive your license. You will also need to carry a $75,000 surety bond at all times.
If you would like to earn certification, you can complete the Certified Transportation Brokers exam given by the Transportation Intermediaries Association. Though not necessary to practice, earning certification could help you land higher paying jobs earlier in your career.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released freight brokerage data in 2017, which stated that freight brokers in Oklahoma earned an average hourly income of $23.04, or $47,930 annually. The highest paid freight brokers in this state earned more than $78,000 during the same year.
The BLS also states that there were about 360 freight brokers working in Oklahoma during 2016. By 2026, this number is expected to jump to 370, adding 10 more workers to the field over this 10-year period.
Working as a Freight Broker in Oklahoma
In Oklahoma, the most highly populated cities are Norman, Lawton and Edmond. These places will have the largest amount of freight distribution, thus making them ideal places for freight brokers to work.
For freight brokers who are new to the industry, it may be ideal to work for an existing brokerage company. This could save you from making any common mistakes that would lead to the downfall of your own brokerage company, if you chose to go into business for yourself before doing your due diligence to learn all the tricks of the trade. If you aspire to become an entrepreneur in this business, working under more experienced brokers first will help you set you up with the necessary expertise to succeed.