About a third of American workers who can work from home choose to be fully remote, according to Pew Research. The logistics industry is no exception to this trend. One role especially suited to working from home is that of a Freight Agent. 

Let’s take a closer look at what a Freight Agent does, the benefits of working remotely, tools for success, and how to set up a home office. 

Understanding the Role of Freight Agents

A Freight Agent is an independent contractor operating under the authority of a licensed and insured Freight Broker to coordinate the transportation of goods for shippers. This role is essential in the shipping industry as they directly manage the operational aspects of freight movement. 


Freight Agents arrange the pickup, transit, and delivery of cargo. They must

  • Find shippers (who need goods moved) and carriers (who will move the goods)
  • Negotiate rates
  • Manage logistics details
  • Ensure timely delivery
  • Maintain communication with both shippers and carriers
  • Provide exceptional customer service

It is common to interchange the roles of Freight Agent and Freight Broker, however they are actually different.

Distinctions Between Brokers and Agents

One of the main differences is the legal and financial requirements for Freight Brokers. Freight Brokers have strict insurance and bonding requirements. In order to operate in the United States, Brokers are legally required to be licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and secure a surety bond.

In contrast, Agents work on commission under the authority of a licensed Freight Broker to coordinate freight shipments. The Freight Broker, then, is responsible for the financial aspects such as invoicing shippers, paying carriers, extending credit, paying Freight Agents, and assisting with claims.

Are Freight Agents in Demand?

With more businesses emphasizing supply chain efficiency to ensure streamlined operations than ever before, the demand for Freight Agents, Freight Brokers and 3PL solutions remains strong in 2024. 

How Stressful is Being a Freight Agent?

Working as a Freight Agent presents a unique array of stresses, such as 

  • Finding shippers
  • Inconsistent pricing within the market
  • Carrier problems
  • Communication challenges
  • Overworking

Stress left unchecked can lead to burnout and poor work-life balance. It is important to set healthy boundaries and take time to schedule your priorities.  Consider these stress management tips.

Benefits of Remote Work for Freight Agents

Work from home has numerous advantages such as flexibility, cost savings as a result of not commuting, and the potential for improved work-life balance

  • More flexibility
  • Cost savings
  • No commuting
  • Increased productivity
  • Comfort
  • Work-life balance

However, as with any remote position, the benefits are directly in proportion to the mindset and boundaries set by the individual. For example, flexibility in setting a schedule can be freeing to some, and to others it can feel like work never ends. It completely depends upon the individual. At Kopf, we find the benefits often outweigh the challenges.

Essential Tools and Technologies for Remote Freight Agents

Technology is continually improving and is one of the most important tools for Freight Agents. From load boards, communication tools, and management software, Agents have the tools they need at their fingertips no matter where they work. 

Load Boards

Load boards are one of the most common ways Freight Agents find loads. Remote Agents can use free or paid load boards. Often brokerages provide paid subscriptions to their independently contracted Freight Agents, such as DAT and Truckstop. 

Communication Tools

Customer satisfaction is the highest priority for Freight Agents. Satisfied customers provide consistent loads and positive referrals. 

  • Email service: Quality brokers, like Kopf, provide this for their Agents free of charge
  • Mobile phone and/or VoIP: VoIP is a technology that allows Agents to make phone calls with an internet connection instead of using a phone line
  • Video conferencing: such as Zoom

Management Software

Transportation Management Software (TMS) is essential in the Logistics Industry. TMS tracks loads, manages documentation, and much more. In order to set up a home office, Freight Agents need TMS. At Kopf, we provide each of our Agents with this valuable tool to help them succeed. 

Building and Maintaining Client Relationships Remotely

Whether working in a brick and mortar brokerage or under the authority of one from home, customer satisfaction matters. Agents must be skilled at building and maintaining excellent relationships with both shippers and carriers.

Utilizing Referrals

Successful Agents leverage referrals to maintain business and diversify their book of business. Agents can find “warm” leads by reaching out to current customers and asking for referrals. This could include referrals for their suppliers, vendors, customers, or friends within their own network. Then spend time researching these leads to learn more about their business and needs.

Effective Cold Calling

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, no one likes cold calling, but cold calling isn’t dead. It is a key part of a lead generation strategy and is still one of the most effective ways to facilitate initial conversations with shippers.  These are our best tips for making cold calls effectively from home.

It takes hard work, consistency, and dealing with lots of rejection, but don’t let it stop you from pressing on.

Setting Up a Home Office for Freight Agents

The thought of setting up a home office might seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Simply start with finding a space and then improve it over time. 

Creating an Efficient Workspace

One of the keys to successfully working from home is a productive home office environment. Choose a dedicated work area that will help limit distractions. It is helpful if there is some natural light nearby. Sunlight can help energize and boost productivity. So if there isn’t a window nearby, take breaks from time to time to look outside. 

An efficient workspace could be in a

  • Basement
  • Closet
  • Spare room
  • Corner of a bedroom

After choosing a space, Agents must make sure the space provides them easy access to the equipment they will need. 

Necessary Equipment 

In addition to the tools mentioned earlier, we recommend our Agents have the following equipment in their home office.

  • Computer (possibly a dual monitor)
  • High speed internet access
  • Dedicated phone line or VoIP
  • All in one printer/fax/scanner

This equipment is typically purchased by the Agent not the brokerage. 

Can Freight Agents Work From Home?

By now you know the answer – yes! Instead of working in the office, Freight Agents can complete their job duties remotely, either from home or another location outside of the office with internet connectivity. This provides Agents with flexibility and increased work-life balance. 

At Kopf Logistics, our Independent Freight Agents work remotely. Most work from home, but several have their own office spaces outside of home, and some even have employees of their own. With an entrepreneurial spirit, strong work ethic, and a positive mindset, Agents can thrive by working remotely. 

Are you a motivated Independent Freight Agent with a book of business interested in making a change? Accelerate your success with Kopf! Apply here to start the process.