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Freight Forwarders Career

Career Description

Research rates, routings, or modes of transport for shipment of products. Maintain awareness of regulations affecting the international movement of cargo. Make arrangements for additional services, such as storage or inland transportation.

What Job Titles Freight Forwarders Might Have

  • Air Export Agent
  • Air Export Coordinator
  • GSA Coordinator
  • Route Specialist

What Freight Forwarders Do

  • Calculate weight, volume, or cost of goods to be moved.
  • Inform clients of factors such as shipping options, timelines, transfers, or regulations affecting shipments.
  • Prepare shipping documentation, such as including bills of lading, packing lists, dock receipts, or certificates of origin.
  • Provide shipment status notification to exporters, consignees, or insurers.
  • Verify proper packaging and labeling of exported goods.
  • Prepare invoices or cost quotations for freight transportation.
  • Select shipment routes, based on nature of goods shipped, transit times, or security needs.
  • Keep records of goods dispatched or received.
  • Consolidate loads with a common destination to reduce costs to individual shippers.
  • Monitor or record locations of goods in transit.
  • Reserve necessary space on ships, aircraft, trains, or trucks.
  • Negotiate shipping rates with freight carriers.
  • Arrange delivery or storage of goods at destinations.
  • Verify adherence of documentation to customs, insurance, or regulatory requirements.
  • Determine efficient and cost-effective methods of moving goods from one location to another.
  • Pay or arrange for payment of freight or insurance fees or other charges.
  • Make arrangements with customs brokers to facilitate the passage of goods through customs.
  • Recommend or arrange appropriate merchandise packing methods, according to climate, terrain, weight, nature of goods, or costs.
  • Maintain current knowledge of relevant legislation, political situations, or other factors that could affect freight shipping.
  • Provide detailed port information to importers or exporters.
  • Arrange for special transport of sensitive cargoes, such as livestock, food, or medical supplies.
  • Obtain or arrange cargo insurance.
  • Complete customs paperwork.
  • Arrange for applicable duties, taxes, or paperwork for customs clearance.
  • Refer exporters to experts in areas such as trade financing, international marketing, government export requirements, international banking, or marine insurance.
  • Assist clients in obtaining insurance reimbursements.

What Freight Forwarders Should Be Good At

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

What Freight Forwarders Should Be Interested In

What Freight Forwarders Need to Learn

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
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Sun iconThis career has a bright outlook.
Median Salary: $41,920

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.