Freight forwarding companies are firms that specialize in arranging storage and shipping of goods on behalf of their clients. They usually provide a wide range of services which include preparation of shipping and import/export documents, tracking inland transportation, warehousing, freight consolidation, negotiating freight charges, booking cargo space, shipment insurance, and filing of insurance claims.
These companies have established significant importance in the import and export industry because of the big role they play in ensuring the smooth and fast shipment of goods in a global scale. Because of their growing importance, a myriad of companies are now offering freight forwarding services. This makes finding a reliable logistics partner a rather difficult task.
The key to a smooth and successful shipment of goods is choosing the right forwarder. But how will you know which company is reliable enough to meet your shipping requirements efficiently? There are certain criteria that you should establish in hiring the perfect logistics partner. Here are some of the top qualities that you should look for in a forwarder.
1. Highly organized and adept in the documentation process of shipping goods in and out of the country. A good forwarder is able to provide accurate and efficient services to their clients because in this kind of business mistakes can be very costly. This is why in freight forwarding there is hardly any room for mistakes such as an error in documentation or delivery of cargo to the wrong country. Although there are insurances for such circumstances, processing the requirements for claiming the insurance could be a waste of time and resources. After all, all you wanted was to have your goods shipped to their right destination without delay.
2. Provides good packing service. Whatever mode of shipment you choose for your goods, whether by land, air or sea, shipping conditions can sometimes be tough and may damage your shipment if they are not packed properly. A good forwarder has an efficient and reliable packing system for various kinds of products especially for fragile goods. When choosing a forwarder knowledge and experience on the proper shipment and handling of your particular type of product should also be a top consideration.
3. Has a reliable network of customs brokers and forwarding agents in the origin and country of destination. This ensures that all information concerning your shipments will seamlessly flow back and forth without delay and reduces the possibility of your shipments being held up in ports. Any delay down the line can be very expensive.
4. Offers a high level of communication and accurate tracking system. When shipping goods overseas, it very important to establish a good line of communication between the forwarder and the shipper. This will allow you to know the real-time progress or exact location of your shipments, giving you peace of mind and assurance that your shipment will arrive in a timely manner.
5. Good insurance coverage. It is equally important to hire a company that has a high level of cargo insurance to cover your products and shipments to ensure that any damage or loss in shipment or warehousing is properly compensated.