On Monday I sat in for our Carrier Development Department since our normal representative was out. I have been filling in over the lunch hour for a couple of months now, so I am not a completely untrained monkey, but there is a definite difference between one hour in the CDD seat and eight hours in the CDD seat. (Oh yes, I fill other seats than the designated Media Misfit at ARPCO.)
I’m exaggerating of course. All-in-all the day went very smooth and I enjoyed interacting with our carriers, however; I have come away with a brighter appreciation for the very high qualification standard of approval of our carriers that ARPCO guarantees for every single shipment we facilitate. We want only the best, of the best, of the best!
So, what is carrier development? —
Carrier development is the approval process for using a truck driver’s [carrier] services. It is a qualification and screening process that guarantees only legitimate carriers with a proven record of compliance, safety, and reliability are hired to pickup and deliver freight.
How do carriers qualify? —
To some degree, the methods of approval varies for every transportation and logistics company. I’ll stick close to home and use ARPCO for my examples.
- A completed and signed Carrier Packet (Motor Carrier Agreement and Carrier Application)
- Insurance, Authority Page, and W-9
- Approval process by SAFER, DAT, Internet Truckstop, FMCSA/CSA, and TIA.
- Safety Letter in the case of “over-threshold” safety scores. (Over-threshold scores are a percentage of violations over the specific amount deemed by the FMSCA as “unsafe.” These violations must be resolved with a Safety Letter which states the action being taken to reduce the safety percentages.)
By utilizing the four-part approval process, we have reduced our chances of hiring a chameleon carrier (A carrier that attempts to register as a new carrier to evade detection or consequences of prior or on-going noncompliance.) or a less than reputable carrier, to put it politely. Although bad carriers may be less of the rule and more of an exception, as in any business, there are those that do not operate with integrity or a “good business practice” mindset.
After we receive all of the paperwork, completely electronically and paperless (Yes, we are proud of our green initiatives.), we verify all information by obtaining insurance certifications directly from the insurance company, conduct an alias search on addresses, phone numbers, and MC numbers, and then input and store all information into our carrier records in our computer system.
As a shipper you are probably thinking, “YES!”
But as a carrier you may be thinking, “Great, I have to do this every time? That will take forever!” or “My scores have are over the threshold, but that doesn’t mean I am a bad carrier!”
Dear Carriers, don’t fret on either case.
Once a carrier is set-up in our system, they stay there. We maintain and update their records in our system, so they can continue to haul their load with minimal paperwork disruption. We keep the signed carrier packet, insurance, and documentation on file for a speedy and painless re-approval process for repeat carriers. And we love to give our reliable carriers lots of repeat busienss!
In the instance of safety scores being over the specified percentage, a representative from our Carrier Development department will call and speak directly to the carrier concerning these scores. We will obtain a letter of safety and ensure that all violations are resolved. In many cases, we will even write a positive review of the carrier to help them boost their scores when we have had a positive experience with them. ARPCO recognizes that it is tough in the trucking industry with rising diesel prices, rising regulations, and decrease in rates and pay, so we want to keep the honest and dependable trucker on the road and running with ease.
ARPCO has made a guarantee to operate within a strong code of good business ethics and principles, so we have implemented a Carrier Development Department to do just that. We give our customers the peace of mind that their freight is in great hands.
There you have it. Questions? Contact our Carrier Development Department at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.