Accessing a new freight broker or shopping for one initially often comes with some confusion. Every freight broker works a bit differently, no two are the same. There are several things to consider in your quest to find a perfect match with your business philosophy. We will look in depth at questions to use when you are interviewing freight brokers. Remember that the freight broker you choose will be an integral part of your business success; your goal is to find a dependable company to work that has the same customer service philosophy as you do.
How do they select their carriers?
Just like you have to research a freight broker they have to investigate carriers to work with. You need to ask about the selection criteria they use to choose carriers for shipping your freight. They should be concerned with the carrier’s safety records, reputation within the industry, length of time they have been in business, the age of their equipment fleet and the number of trucks and drivers they have. Their carriers are about to become your LTL freight shippers.
How are their communication skills?
You need to choose a freight broker that works with carriers that will represent your company and product as if you were hand delivering it. The carrier’s dispatchers will be working directly with your clients on status updates, delivery notices and ensuring that the shipment arrives where it should and in the condition it was promised. How well the broker communicates with you is a solid indicator of how well communication runs throughout their operation.
How good is their billing department?
This may not seem super important to you but in reality is a key aspect of logistic organization. Find a freight broker that offers accurate, detailed and timely billing. This is important to your business as many times the cost of shipping can be passed off to your customers. Inaccurate billing on the part of the freight broker in turn leads to billing errors to your customers, thus throwing off the finances within your logistic department.
Ask them to provide references?
Check out the freight brokers references. Meet with references that manufacture and ship similar goods to what you offer in the same areas that you ship too. This will give you a complete idea of what you can expect from them. Talk in depth about recent performance, including issues and how they have been handled.
There is a lot to consider when choosing a broker to handle your LTL freight services. Follow your instincts. The cost of their services should not be the only reason to hire or not hire a freight shipping broker as good customer services is often worth some extra pennies here and there.