In an ideal world, in the logistics industry, Shippers, Brokers, and Carriers would all work harmoniously together. Unfortunately, a history of distrust has plagued transportation and created unnecessary friction between the parties, especially Brokers and Carriers, leading to inefficient systems and redundant processes. This distrust is often the result of both sides assuming the other party knows more than they are letting on.
This isn’t true for all broker and carrier relationships and luckily, there are solutions to this common occurrence. And the benefits of a strong relationship, as in life, are plenty.
Benefits to a strong Broker and Carrier relationship include:
More bookings completed per day
More revenue for both parties
More efficiency for both parties
Confidence in bookings built on trust
As a result of our own broker relationships and the conversations we’ve had, we’ve summarized the top five ways to build a strong relationship between brokers and carriers.
Top 5 ways to build a strong relationship between Brokers and Carriers
1. Connect your Carrier to your Carrier Rep
The relationship between your Carrier Rep and their Carriers is critical to the success of your business. Start it off on the right foot (or make an existing relationship stronger) and give your Carrier Rep a list of questions they can ask their Carrier that they can then record. Instead of keeping responses on post-its or spreadsheets, encourage Carrier Reps to use a platform like FreightFriend’s Carrier Wizard where they can document answers to questions like:
What lanes do you most commonly run?
What lanes are you open to running?
What are your equipment types?
Do you have a truck list and can I get added?
Are you interested in bidding on dedicated freight options?
What services do you provide?
2. Share information about you and your business
As you ask the Carrier to share information about their company and preferences, ensure you reciprocate and share information with them. Examples of what to include in an informational email include:
Who you are and your experience within the industry
The shipper relationships your brokerage has
The commodities you typically run
The benefits of working with your brokerage
An example of the emails they will receive from FreightFriend with your load detail
3. Stay in touch with your Carrier
Set a reminder to reach out to your Carriers every 30, 60, and 90 days (and encourage your Carrier Reps to connect every day). See if anything has changed with their lane preferences, their equipment types, or their business then update the corresponding information in a platform like FreightFriend with the goal of keeping Carrier information as accurate as possible. This can be as casual as an automated reminder email or as high-touch as a personal phone call. Remember that follow-up and consistency are key. In addition to strengthening your relationship, this could lead to new introductions to more qualified carriers.
4. Incentivize your Carrier Reps for repeat bookings
When your Carrier Reps are motivated to work with the same Carriers, they will be encouraged to strengthen their relationships with them. And we know that repeat bookings equal extra money in everyone’s pockets. Additionally, time will be freed up for your Carrier Reps leading to better use of their time and the reduction of new staff.
5. Show gratitude
Your carrier relationships determine the success of your business so show carriers that you appreciate their work. Whether it is at your interval check-ins or adhoc, give them feedback on your work together and thank them for their partnership. A little bit goes a long way in making all parties feel confident in the relationship.
Make 2023 a successful year by putting these simple practices into place. With minimal effort making a significant impact, a strong Carrier and Broker relationship will guarantee you and your business a banner year.
Ready for a demo of FreightFriend? Sign up here to see how our carrier management platform can help you strengthen your relationships with your carrier partners.