How to start a new transportation brokerage business

Freight Brokers provide an important service in the realm of transportation.  Have you ever wondered what it takes to start a transportation brokerage?

Before taking the leap into a new business you need to stop and think what your primary goal is.  There are a million questions you need to determine and put into a Business Plan.   Make sure you have all the details documented and consider all the “what ifs”.

Decide a business name, type of legal business and so forth.   You will want to check with a professional to decide what your local, state and federal requirements are.   Most businesses also have an accounting professional to help with all the set up involved in starting up a new business.   An accountant can be very helpful in the month to month operations of a brokerage.   Many people are great at moving freight but either don’t have the training or the time to spend adequate time with the accounting.

Most people starting a transportation brokerage have had some experience in the industry.  This is critical in starting a brokerage.   It is very difficult to start without first having a Customer and Carrier database.   Both sides are very important.  You may have some customers giving you great freight shipments, but you need a carrier base that trusts working with a new business.    And it doesn’t do you any good to have some great carriers if there is no freight to move.    On the other hand, in today’s world it can be tricky to use your experience.   If you previously worked at another brokerage you must pay close attention to previous contracts or non-compete clauses you may have with that brokerage.   You do not want to start a new business off with a lawsuit.

One of the most important decisions to make is regarding the software and computer environment you need.    Do you need to get your own server or use a cloud-based service?   A TMS – Transportation Management System is critical.   You need a system that is easy to use but also covers everything that you may need.   It also must be able to accommodate your business growth.   A great software for this is with Freight Management Systems Inc.  The LOADPlus software is designed especially for brokerages and can be used with 1 user or over 100 users.   You can email for a demo of how it can work for a new or established business.


This is #1 in our Series on Starting a Transporation Brokerage Business.  Leave a comment or question below.

Please check the next blog for what requirements are necessary with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

Customer Training Specialist at Freight Management Systems. Laura grew up in Medford, Oregon which is often known as the “Transportation Broker Capital” of the US. She managed a very large brokerage for many years and is a certified broker with the Transportation Intermediaries Association. Laura has extensive knowledge in the LOADPlus brand from both a client’s perspective and an as a transportation Broker. With her extensive background and her very patient personality, she is a perfect fit to lead up our training and testing teams at FMS. She looks forward to working with new and existing clients in all your learning needs.

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