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Customs Broker

Customs brokers are international trade specialists who handle the import and export of goods for clients. Customs brokers also may be involved in logistics or supply chain management.

  • Avg. Salary N/A
  • Avg. Wage N/A
  • Minimum Education High school diploma
  • Outlook below avg
  • Employed < 1500
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As


NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Customs Brokers (1236.1) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Customs, Ship and Other Brokers (B116) 
  • 2011 NOC: Customs, ship and other brokers (1315) 
  • 2016 NOC: Customs, ship and other brokers (1315) 
Interest Codes
The Customs Broker is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Customs Brokers

Interest in co-ordinating information to arrange for payment of duties, taxes, storage and transportation of imported goods, and of bonds to cover duty goods


Interest in speaking with people to quote duty and tax rates on commodities


Interest in signing import/export documents on behalf of clients, using power of attorney

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Mar 08, 2016

Customs brokers act on behalf of importers to move goods through customs. They understand laws related to trade and advise clients.

Some customs brokers are also freight forwarders or consultants. In general, customs brokers:

  • know and follow all related regulations, laws and procedures
  • prepare and process import and export documents
  • arrange to pay duties, taxes and other import-related charges
  • keep track of and trace the location of goods
  • arrange storage or transport of imported goods
  • provide advice on duty and tax rates on goods, import and export restrictions and tariff classifications

help clients when they are audited by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) or other government departments or agencies.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 08, 2016

Customs brokers work in urban offices or at border crossings. They usually work a 40-hour week. Offices are open 24 hours every day.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 08, 2016

Customs brokers need to possess:

  • a willingness to keep up with changing laws, procedures and technology
  • good oral and written communication skills
  • the ability to work well on their own and with others
  • the ability to work well under pressure.

They should enjoy talking to people, making decisions and having clear rules and organized methods for their work.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 08, 2016

There are no minimum educational requirements in this occupation. However, employers prefer to hire people who have:

  • post-secondary education in economics, business or international trade
  • a Certified Customs Specialist (CCS) designation
  • a Certified Trade Compliance Specialist (CTCS) designation.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Calgary South

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton City Centre

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton North

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton South

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton West

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Red Deer

Reeves College - Calgary City Centre

Reeves College - Calgary North

Reeves College - Edmonton

Reeves College - Edmonton North

Robertson College - Calgary

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 08, 2016

There is currently no legislation regulating this occupation. For information about the voluntary Certified Customs Specialist (CCS) or Certified Trade Compliance Specialist (CTCS) designations, see the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers (CSCB) website.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 08, 2016

Customs brokers work for:

  • customs brokerage firms
  • freight forwarders
  • importers
  • exporters
  • manufacturers.

Newly hired employees in customs brokerage firms may start out as data entry clerks. When they have learned enough about the business they may advance to other positions.

Advancement in this occupation usually takes the form of pay increases and more complex responsibilities. Over time, customs brokers may become supervisors or managers. They also may become consultants.

Customs brokers are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 1315: Customs, ship and other brokers. In Alberta, most people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

In Alberta, the 1315: Customs, ship and other brokers occupational group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 0% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 0 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 08, 2016

Salaries for customs brokers vary according to the complexity of their responsibilities.

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 08, 2016

Canadian Society of Customs Brokers website:

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 15, 2018. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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