A freight forwarder is a person or company that organizes shipments for individuals or corporations to get goods from the manufacturer or producer to a market, customer or final point of distribution.
Function and tasks:
Freight forwarders normally do not own the modes of transportation they use. So, in order to bring goods from A to B, freight forwarders contract with carriers, who use various shipping models, e.g. ships, airplanes etc., to move cargo.
Typically, a freight forwarder utilizes different modes of transportation: For example, goods might be transported from the manufacturer to the airport via truck. At the airport, the cargo is loaded onto an airplane. After it arrives in the destination-city, the cargo is transported to the customer via rail. International freight forwarders mostly move cargo via ship and airplane.
It is also possibly to book customs clearance with the freight forwarder.
Freight forwarders deal with various documents along the transportation-process; from commercial invoices to various documents required by the carrier or country of import/export.
Goals & Way of Working:
The goal of every freight forwarder is to transport goods from A to B in a somewhat timely manner. Therefore, "As long as it arrives in a reasonable timeframe" is the mindset of most freight forwarders. As a result, customer satisfaction does not rank high in their priorities. Neither does On-time-Performance (OTP).
This manifests itself in their way of working:
"As long as it arrives in a reasonable timeframe" does not force freight forwarders to work proactively, transparently and efficiently.
On the contrary, this mindset makes freight forwarders avoid extra work, unless it is absolutely necessary.
This is why customers need to approach their forwarders in order to find out if there are any problems with customs clearance, or rolled containers.
This is why customers loose money, as forwarders are not flexible enough to avoid e.g. demurrage and/or detention.
This is why customers have to wait anywhere from 24 hours up to five whole workdays in order to book a shipment.
This is where FreightHub comes in!