A freight broker is very different from a third-party logistics (3PL) provider that offers freight brokerage services. In more ways than one, a 3PL can offer a speedier and more reliable route for solving urgent shipping issues than a broker and support you through a trusted network of high-quality carriers. Understanding the difference between 3PL freight brokerage services and freight broker services will help you make a more educated choice when you need something shipped fast.
Sometimes it’s a struggle to get goods delivered through their regular shipment processes. This requires fast and accurate services from a responsive team—but who will that be? Let’s review the freight brokerage basics so you know where to turn when you need help.
What is Freight Brokerage?
Freight brokerage connects shippers in need of immediate shipping aid with carriers that have the capacity to meet those needs now. This is the outsourcing of freight transportation; the shipper is not communicating directly with the carrier on their own to get the job done. Because the shipper has already sought help from carriers directly and found that path unsuccessful—perhaps because there were no carriers available to meet certain accommodations or make space for a load—the shipper turns to the brokerage service provider for support. This provider has the resources and expertise to act fast and tap into a network of carriers at the ready for urgent fulfillment. Who is this provider exactly? It’s a third-party logistics provider with an in-house team dedicated solely to freight brokerage.
Shippers often choose to work with a 3PL for freight brokerage because the entire process is easy and hassle-free and effectively delivers shipments from Point A to Point B fast.
There’s less paperwork and problem-solving for shippers, and the carriers involved can also save time and money by getting their truck capacity filled. 3PL freight brokerage services are active problem-solving services that are offered by professionals who excel in fast-paced, customer-centric environments because they must act fast to link shippers with appropriate carriers. Their job usually starts with a shipper’s urgent request for load coverage and immediate order tender and freight scheduling.
Freight brokerage is the answer to these common logistics problems:
- A carrier has backed out at the last minute and you need shipments made yesterday
- You’re struggling to find a truck that accommodates specific physical requirements
- You’re in need of a reliable and responsive source for making urgent deliveries
What Services Does a 3PL Offer?
An experienced 3PL typically offers access to a large network of qualified and trusted carriers in addition to essential freight brokerage services like dispatch, loading, transit, unloading, delivery and progress updates through both phone and email. This means a 3PL must be a one-stop shop for freight brokerage and dedicate an entire team to handle services and remain on-call for shippers.
Here’s what to look for in 3PL and its suite of freight brokerage services:
- Ability to serve businesses of all sizes in a wide variety of industries
- Knowledge of specific regulatory, safety and security requirements for various goods
- A track record of reliable communication between carriers and clients
- Fast and highly responsive support team that asks the right questions and gets answers
- Expert issue management and ongoing tracking, reporting and updates
- Qualified network of high-quality, trusted carriers with national reach
- Support for a range of shipment modes, including FTL, LTL, expedited, bulk and more
Who will you turn to when you face tight deadlines and need that load delivered yesterday? An experienced 3PL’s freight brokerage team stands at the ready, well-equipped to meet your urgent shipment needs. Connect with CLX Logistics the next time you run into freight challenges.