When a truck needs freight or freight needs a truck, a freight broker is a person who can arrange both. Without accepting direct responsibility for shipments, a freight broker arranges cargo transportation without actually providing it. He is essentially a matchmaker, matching cargo with transporters.
A freight broker must have shipping knowledge that comes from up to two years of experience and know how to generate clients from within the industry. Freight brokers with contacts from within the shipping industry tend to be more successful at this job. Other duties include cash management, negotiating and planning.
An educational or professional degree is not required to be a freight broker, but there are courses available to prepare a person to become one. These courses are often offered by transportation organizations. Freight brokers are also required to be licensed by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
A freight broker’s salary will vary based on location, experience and size of company, but as of 2010, the average U.S. salary is $39,000 per year. Some freight brokers choose to operate independently, which may lead to higher income.