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Freight Broker or Freight Dispatcher – What’s the Difference?
The following comments may be helpful – people call and ask. I’m planning to launch the Atex Freight Dispatch training some time in February! Stay tuned …
- A freight broker needs to get their authority (license) from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) whereas a freight dispatcher does not (at least as of this writing).
- A freight broker may work with both owner operators and company drivers whereas a freight dispatcher normally works only with owner operators unless, of course, the dispatcher works as an employee and could be dispatching owner operators and/or company drivers.
- A freight broker goes directly to shippers for loads whereas a freight dispatcher gets loads from freight brokers using load boards.
- A freight broker works with multiple motor carriers whereas a freight dispatcher should be working with just one entity (some work with multiple carriers – this issue is being explored and may be revised).
- A freight broker connects multiple motor carriers with multiple shippers whereas a freight dispatcher gets loads for just one motor carrier.
- A freight broker works on a margin – the difference between what the shipper is paying and what the freight broker then pays the carrier.
- A freight dispatcher generally gets paid a percentage or a dollar amount for each delivered load.
- A freight broker relies upon the driver to monitor and manage the driver’s hours of service (HOS) whereas a freight dispatcher may need to get more involved.
- Both the freight broker and freight dispatcher relay information to the driver on scheduling pick-ups and deliveries.
- Both the freight broker and the freight dispatcher want to get cargo picked up and delivered safely, on-time and efficiently.
- Both the freight broker and the freight dispatcher rely on superb communication skills between all parties involved.
- A freight broker may not always have a back haul for the driver whereas the freight dispatcher will always be looking for new loads after a deliver is made.
- A freight broker negotiates and offers rates to a driver (or his dispatcher) whereas a freight dispatcher learns what his owner operator wants.
- A freight broker normally does not do routing for the driver (may be some exceptions) whereas the freight dispatcher may get very involved in lane routing.
- A freight broker may get somewhat involved if the driver gets into an accident whereas the freight dispatcher will get very involved.
- A freight broker is not required to locate service and maintenance facilities for the driver whereas the freight dispatcher may be very helpful here for the driver.
- A freight broker, generally, does not file a claim in the event of missing or damaged cargo on delivery whereas a freight dispatcher may help in the event a shipper files a claim against the carrier.
- A freight dispatcher may help prepare the owner operator’s invoices and handle collections and payables whereas the freight broker does not.
- A freight broker needs to know general FMCSA compliance and safety issues related to motor carriers whereas a dispatcher may get more involved.
There may be a hundred more of these but, hopefully, this provides some good insight.