What is a Freight forwarder and what are the key points for choosing one?
According to the business directory definition, a freight forwarder is a firm that specializes in organizing and arranging storage and shipping of merchandise on behalf of its shipper. For companies who rely on shipping for inventory and to transport their products to end customers, finding a freight forwarder is an extremely important part for your organization. Knowing how to choose a freight forwarder is even a more significant stage for your company. A freight forwarder will help keep your company’s import and export shipments flowing with an easy level of visibility, attention to detail, and excellent communication which can help increase you and your company’s overall productivity and competence.
Some of the key points for choosing a freight forwarder are as follows.
What does my company really need? First thing you need to do before choosing a freight forwarder is to evaluate your company’s needs. The more you know about what you need the better you will be able to provide your needs to the freight forwarder without complicating things. Initial start: What is the commodity being shipped. How many imports and exports does our company have on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis. What is the volume of parcel, air freight, and ocean freight. What are the common origins and destinations. Knowing this information will help determine what kind of freight forwarder to hire. You want a forwarder which is experienced in handling the type of shipments that your company has on a regular basis, and one which has an network of agents to ensure coverage to all of your common locations. If you hire a company that is inexperienced, you are putting your needs at risk for failure.
Does experience matter? To put it simply, YES! One must put in perspective the level of experience when hiring an employee, same goes for hiring a freight forwarder. The more experience they have had, the better they fit as candidates to serve your company.
Reputation is also an essential aspect. Who are they and what type of connections do they possess, is another aspect to consider while evaluating freight forwarders. You want a freight forwarder that you can develop a business rapport with and that grows with you. Many freight forwarders are members to different affiliations for air and ocean business, and this is a big positive which can help bring growth and expansion to your business. When evaluating your freight forwarder, ask about their affiliations, agent networks, and scope coverage.
Having the peace of mind that there are experts and agents readily available to you that can help with the complexity of shipping, customs rules, and regulations, is an essential aspect to consider in hiring the best fit freight forwarder candidate for your business.
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