As businesses rely on a much wider variety of parts, materials, products and delivery methods in an age of global communication, the desire to find the best route at any given time grows stronger. That answer is not always the same; a business' favorite shipping company may be overloaded or not in the area, but many other options may be available in different paths, distances and capacities. A few scenarios can help you understand the concept of getting everything to the right place at the right time with transportation paths that may not be the same throughout the day.
Overseas Shortage Scare
International business often relies on bringing in certain products over a long, sometimes perilous journey overseas. Depending on cost, cargo aircraft or cargo sea vessels may be used, which can change the calculus of a business. Is money lost by saving time or by paying for a faster method? It all depends on the demand at a given time and how impatient the clients may be.
When there's a shortage in another country across a long distance, odds are you'll need the product as soon as possible. Unfortunately, a panicked purchase of as many goods as possible can backfire in products such as perishable foods or temperature-sensitive materials.
If you have to combine the shipped materials with other materials, ordering through a large backlog may deliver a larger-than-necessary amount that you may not be able to store. Sure, you'll be the winner when it comes to getting an item that is heavily out of stock, but if that stock expires while waiting for the rest of the business process, money can be lost.
Freight brokers are responsible for calculating the best, most likely paths for getting a given product to and from its destination at the right time. If a firm in the western United States needs liquid goods from Thailand during a factory failure, a system of waiting lists and timed shipments can be used to get as much fresh product in place as soon as possible without overloading the customer.
Produce Wilting Versus Contamination
The major responsibility of a freight broker is to find the faster way to get a product from source to destination--or to multiple destinations. This may mean jumping from different carriers just to follow a cheaper path already being traveled, but there are some risks involved.
Consider a business that produces foods for people with allergies to certain products--nuts, for example. Such products are supposed to be created, handled and packaged in a facility that does not produce or pack nut-based products.
Sometimes a raw material needs to be shipped to another facility using third party means. It's great to have the product move quickly, but what happens if the raw materials are exposed to peanuts? What if a few peanuts fall over containers or into clothes of loading personnel, which eventually falls into the creation process? Freight broker training exists to take all related concerns into consideration.
Contact a freight broker training program professional to begin an important, often complex career.