When it comes to choosing the best top freight forwarders in the industry, you may ask yourself how and where to begin. Within the transportation industry, freight forwarders play a critical role, and your success rests in choosing the best forwarding partner. The following outlines valuable tips and insight on how to make the most informed decision when it comes to finding the right forwarding agent.
Assess Your Storage And Shipping Needs
Look closely at your business needs when you begin the process of selecting a forwarding service. Outline fundamental information including the types of service you’re interested in having, preferred mode of transportation, and the average volume of your shipments. This first step is the most important part of determining whether a forwarder has the ability to perform the job to your satisfaction.
Research To Understand Whether A Forwarding Agent Can Meet Your Standards
Do your due diligence by researching a range of forwarding services down to the finest detail, to get a clear sense of what they can and cannot do for you. Throughout this research process, you’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions, and understand industry terms and the legal framework.
Inform Yourself About The Prospective Forwarder’s Background
Check out a forwarder’s experience and assess their credentials to better understand whether they can handle the job you’re hiring them to perform. Having confidence the company you choose is prepared to handle unexpected challenges is paramount to your level of trust when hiring the right forwarder. References and testimonials are helpful tools to make that determination.
You Want A Forwarder That Is Properly Bonded
Knowing your freight forwarder is equipped with financial stability is crucial during the selection process. You can’t afford having delays as a result of the forwarding agents financial circumstances. Protect yourself by ensuring your forwarder is properly bonded with a required freight broker bond for operation authority. A company may only be issued the bond when a complete assessment of their financial status is realized. The bond also guarantees you’re compensated in the event challenges occur.
Look At The Forwarder’s Network
Take a look how well-connected the prospective company is with other forwarders and transportation agencies. This will give you a better gauge on whether they have the capabilities to meet your business’s needs. A network of agents and partners within the U.S. and overseas if exporting says a lot about their experience level. See their carrier contracts and assess how diverse and how many contracts the forwarder has fulfilled to get a clearer sense for the safety of their operations.
Contract With A Forwarder With Membership To Professional Organizations
Professional networks offer a window into how reputable a forwarder is within its industry. Membership to a trade association or other network requires proof of professionalism, legitimacy and specific financial disclosures that gives you insight as to whether you want to do business with a particular forwarder based on these same criteria.
Customer Service Is Everything
They say customer service is the key to any successful company regardless of industry or size. You want to make sure you team up with a freight forwarding company that knows how to communicate and treat their customers. The quality of the customer service is a reflection of how efficiently a company operates. If a simple customer service inquiry involves several people addressing a single issue, this may be an indication the forwarder is ill equipped to handle more complex challenges.