Starting your own trucking business - you need to partner with reliable brokers and shippers.

In part 4 of our series on financial considerations for staring your trucking business we are going to discuss partnering with reputable brokers and shippers. If you have been following along with our series you have acquired equipmentsecured the appropriate licenses and permits and obtained insurance. You should now be ready to get on the road! But wait, in order to get on the road, you need loads to haul. It might be tempting to partner with the first broker or shipper you hear from. However, that could make you stall before you even start.

A key to long-term financial success when starting your own trucking company is finding and partnering with reputable brokers and shippers.

 

Why it is important

In many cases your brokers and shippers dictate several things about your business. In particular, how much you will make for each load you haul and how many loads you haul. Additionally, they can dictate where you haul them and how much down time you have to endure. For someone who has that much influence over your business, it is imperative that you are working with professional and reputable people. If not, the most significant consequence could mean the difference between getting paid and not getting paid. 

What to look for

Experience

Experienced shippers and brokers should have knowledge and connections that will help you and your business. It could be helpful for you to ask for three references of other carriers they have worked with. In fact, this is a great way to get an idea of if they are a good fit for you.

Along with experience should come their credit rating, which could indicate their likelihood to pay you and pay you on time. It could be beneficial to run a credit check on your brokers and shippers before you haul their first load to decrease your risk. If you work with a freight factoring company, such as Tetra Capital, we will run free credit checks for you.

Licensing

One of the first things you should check before working with a broker is their license status with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). You can check it at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov. Information regarding the status of the bond is also available on this site on the insurance section.  If the broker authority is not active, it might not be in your best interest to take the load. An active authority ensures legitimacy for the broker and security and protection for you.

Support

To be successful you need to partner with reputable brokers and shippers who are there to support you while you are on the road. This can include ensuring they will be there to answer your call if an issue arises, helping you to eliminate empty miles, offering driver-friendly facilities and adequate communication among other things.

Hopefully, these tips on partnering with reputable brokers and shippers will help you choose the right partners to grow your business. Stay tuned for part 5 of our series on securing financing.

 

Starting a trucking business and want to learn more? Check out the other articles in our 6-part series on financial considerations for starting your own trucking business.

Acquiring Equipment – Part 1

Secure the appropriate licenses and permits – Part 2

Obtaining insurance – Part 3

Partnering with reputable shippers and brokers – Part 4

Secure Financing – Part 5

Research ways to save on fuel – Part 6