Freight AgentsWritten by Kathleen Gagne
Freight agents are responsible for arranging and tracking both incoming and outgoing shipments by truck, air, rail, and water. They plan routes based on a number of factors including safety, length, and costs. They may also be involved in acquiring return loads for trucks in order to maximize their efficiency. In addition, they prepare and monitor all documents related to each shipment.
Organizing Profits Moving Freight
Freight agents take orders from customers and ensure that cargoes are picked up and delivered on time. One key job task that they handle is keeping records of each cargo including items shipped, weight, dimensions, and the number of boxes, pallets, or units. Part of this function is to audit loads when they leave and when they arrive at their destinations. Clearly, this factor relates to over or underpaying for shipments and/or warehouse storage.
In essence, freight agents are logistics experts. They manage details using a variety of tools including specialized software. Tracking methods may involve driver call ins and/or GPS satellite technology. Tracking is a primary focus since late arrivals and damaged goods usually result in payment issues.
Shipping rates for each load may be determined by the freight agent handling that shipment. Working in situations that involve multiple countries, the agents verify import and export documents and expedite any customs issues as they occur. Problem solvers, route designers, cargo auditors, and more, qualified and highly skilled freight agents are integral to the smooth running of the shipping segment of the supply chain.