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A Broker’s Guide: How to Automate Carrier Onboarding and Monitoring

In the broker industry, carriers are more than the people who move products safely on a deadline. As part of your transportation team, they’re also an extension of the services you, as the broker, provide to your clients. An honest, trustworthy, qualified carrier can go a long way to growing and maintaining your reputation among shippers.

As such, there’s a lot more to finding a partner carrier than searching load boards. Due diligence is essential to ensuring that the carriers you retain are certified to haul your shippers’ products and compliant and licensed in all the areas you need.

brokers in the office

This is where carrier onboarding and monitoring programs come in. These tools give you in-depth insights about the carriers you hire and keep you in the loop about their ongoing statuses while giving you the ability to differentiate yourself from the competition.

What is carrier onboarding and monitoring?

Before getting into the details of how onboarding and monitoring tools work, it’s helpful to know a few basics:

Carrier onboarding is the process of vetting a new carrier before hiring. This involves looking at everything from compliance, safety, accountability (CSA) scores, risk assessment, insurance and liability, and up-to-date operating authorities.

Carrier monitoring helps you quickly confirm that your carriers are on track with freight rules and regulations. Things frequently change with carriers. Insurance lapses, safety ratings change, and operating authorities expire. Comprehensive monitoring is key to staying on top of carrier compliance for your shippers.

How onboarding and monitoring benefits your business

Onboarding and monitoring systems ensure that your shippers’ goods get to their final destinations. Why? Because these cutting-edge software platforms provide critical, timely information about your carriers, including safety ratings, compliance, insurance, and bonding. Here’s what it can help you do:

1. Source qualified carriers faster.

Finding and vetting carriers is an incredibly time-consuming task. Proven onboarding software solutions save you hours of manual work with instant access to CSA ratings, potential risks, and certifications. Truckstop.com’s RMIS Carrier Onboarding platform gives you access to 98% of all active carriers in the U.S. and Canada, so you cast a wider net while using sophisticated filtering to hone in on the best carriers for your network. 

2. Remove data entry and paperwork.

Onboarding and monitoring require a lot of forms and time-consuming data entry. Cut the red tape and streamline shipping processes with an all-in-one onboarding and monitoring system. Automated carrier onboarding is 80% faster than manual processes. Replacing unreliable faxes with on-demand online documentation and getting instant electronic signatures dramatically speed up manual onboarding processes. The result? You spend less time on paperwork and more time getting carriers to work quickly and building your reputation with shippers. 

3. Differentiate your business.

Stand out from the competition by proving you can source and monitor best-in-class carriers. Offer your shippers peace of mind with Truckstop.com’s Compliance-as-a-Service. It not only helps you keep an eye on the truckers you target and hire, but it also shows shippers you go the extra mile to ensure their cargo is in good hands with top-notch carriers.

4. Mitigate identity theft and fraud.

Carrier fraud is an ongoing problem. There are dishonest truckers out there who falsify records and even steal identities. Fortunately, you can take steps at the beginning to mitigate this risk. Onboarding tools give you access to full Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) watchdog reports on carriers, plus additional fraud and identity checks on any carriers you want.

5. Reduce ongoing compliance risks.

Failure to substantially vet a carrier before hiring can lead to safety hazards, liability issues, and lawsuits. It’s critical for you and your clients’ protection to monitor carriers for these and other risks continually. Even with a thorough onboarding, statuses like CSA-e compliance scores, safety ratings, and licensing requirements can change. Automated carrier monitoring keeps track of your carriers’ ratings, keeping you in the loop about your truckers with custom email alerts and change notifications. 

Why your approach to onboarding and compliance is important to shippers

shipper persona homepage

Shippers don’t want to worry about carrier compliance, relationships, or risks. That’s why they hire you. It’s your job to keep a careful eye on who’s transporting their goods and that they arrive intact and on time, legally and safely.  Shippers trust you to hire truckers with the necessary licenses, authority, and insurance to move their freight. This is where a comprehensive onboarding and monitoring system comes in.

Onboarding and monitoring also minimize the risk of extra shipping charges. Cargo can be delayed if a carrier’s authority or certifications aren’t in order. Freight could be damaged or mishandled, something you could have avoided with transparent carrier safety ratings. Worst case, your shippers could be dragged into nasty lawsuits, especially if carriers have filed fraudulent documents or allowed insurance or licenses to lapse.

How to automate the carrier onboarding and monitoring process with Truckstop.com

Automated onboarding and monitoring tools save you time, reduce costs, and build trust with shippers. They also help you stand out from your competitors. Use these tools to:

Publish a branded carrier registration website. Services like Truckstop.com can create a customized website for you. You get all the benefits of RMIS Carrier Onboarding on the backend while branding it as your own. Providing all your services, requirements, and documents in one place cuts down on paperwork and carriers can come directly to you for available freight. As they apply for loads, you can check their statuses, ratings, compliance, and other vital info without all the time-consuming manual research and back-and-forth. 

Create advanced carrier selection rules. Truckstop.com’s onboarding services let you customize your carrier selection parameters, such as financial stability, current clients, limits of liability, and insurance coverage. This makes finding, hiring, and monitoring good carriers much faster and more accurate. 

Best-in-class compliance solutions.

Choose the best carriers. Onboard them quickly. Rest assured.

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Get daily carrier safety and compliance alerts. Consistently monitoring your carriers’ compliance status is essential to building and maintaining a good reputation. Any system you use should offer regular updates about fleet conditions, communication abilities, insurance, safety, compliance, and even the use of subcontractors. Not having this information can get both you and your shipping clients into legal trouble. Truckstop.com provides ongoing status reports about the carriers you hire, ensuring compliance with safety ratings, operating authorities, and more.  

Integration with TMS. Managing your onboarding and monitoring manually or across multiple tools is inefficient, robbing you of time by constantly switching and duplicating tasks. Truckstop.com’s RMIS Onboarding system seamlessly connects with your TMS, eliminating time spent getting your technology to “talk” with each other. Carrier information is immediately accessible. You can onboard them quickly and automatically. All your data and documentation are in one place, and you know your truckers are ready to deliver cargo safely and on time.

What to look for in a compliance solution

Onboarding and monitoring are critical to operating a successful brokerage. But doing it manually is hugely time-consuming. Automated solutions like Truckstop.com’s RMIS Carrier Onboarding product let you vet and hire carriers 80% faster than manual processes. Automation through Truckstop.com’s Carrier Monitoring product also gives you more accurate and efficient oversight for authority, safety, compliance, ratings, fraud checks, and identity theft. 

Truckstop.com’s onboarding and monitoring tools help you work faster, better, and more profitably while minimizing risk and helping you stand out from the pack. Want to see it in action?  Request a free Carrier Onboarding demo.

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