Truck dispatcher duties include scheduling trucks to move freight according to the requirements of the customer, maintaining communication with the driver and the customer during transport, and managing daily schedules and work orders. The dispatcher also ensures compliance with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations and addresses problems during transport.
The dispatcher works to ensure that both the driver and customer have adequate information about the job and that schedules and expectations do not jeopardize the safety of the load or the driver. It is the job of the dispatcher to negotiate these sometimes conflicting expectations. While communication, people skills and trouble-shooting skills are essential to the work, dispatchers must also handle a fair amount of record-keeping, including logging driver progress and processing orders. Dispatching requires strong computer and communication skills and the ability to make sound decisions quickly.
Truck dispatchers may also work independently or as freight brokers representing businesses that need to move freight. Independent dispatchers work for individuals who own and operate their own truck or for small trucking companies, usually earning a percentage or flat fee for each load scheduled. Freight brokers work with dispatchers or directly with owner-operators to match drivers with loads, usually earning a commission.