Top 10 ways to achieve warehousing and logistics success via a 3PL
Has the time come for you to take advantage of outsourcing your logistics functions to a 3PL provider?
There are many benefits to this; however, it is essential that you follow the correct steps when selecting your 3PL partner as they will become an intrinsic part of your supply chain. By making the right decisions now, you will reap the rewards in the future.
How to find a 3PL supplier who you can work with and trust and whose values match your own.
- Adequate internal preparation
First of all, make sure you know what you want and what you need. Now is the time to reassess your processes and create a comprehensive brief that you can share with potential 3PL partners. Be explicit about your objectives. This will enable the 3PLs to propose effective solutions that will meet your needs.
While considering their proposals, look out for:
- Sensible pricing that protects their margin. Win-win.
Don’t judge solely on price. If someone comes in cheaply – think to yourself: can they really operate effectively at that price? If they don’t give themselves a decent margin, will they be able to deliver the level of service you require?
- Good range of service offering to suit your needs.
It can be beneficial to have all of your logistics functions handled by the same supplier. From warehousing, same-day, and overnight – does the supplier you are looking at offer a good breadth of services that meet your brief?
- As hassle-free as possible
You have decided to outsource to a 3PL, so you want to make not only the hand-over as smooth as possible but, even more importantly, the ongoing relationship.
How do they plan on managing the hand-over, and what systems and processes do they have in place that will make your life easier for the duration of the contract? Will you have your own project manager? How much of the process is managed online? What kind of reporting can you expect?
- Pro-active on service development
Is your potential partner going to be proactive? Have they offered unique solutions to your brief? Have they proposed regular reviews to help you take advantage of their specialist knowledge at the forefront of the industry? Are they ‘forward-looking’ and solutions-driven?
- Growth potential in line with their own
If you have growth plans, does your new 3PL partner have the same aspirations, or are they already big enough to meet your future needs? Don’t just plan for today; think about tomorrow too.
- Good reputation
Check their reputation. Can they provide you with testimonials, reviews, awards, and ideally, allow you to speak to existing customers? How long have they worked with their current clients? The opinion of people they already work with is gold dust if you can get access to this.
- Financially stable
This is a relatively easy one to check out at Companies House and with the credit referencing people. Easy, but essential. Make sure you are putting your precious cargo in safe hands.
- Good accreditations to suit your products and industry regulations.
Good accreditations and certifications to industry standards demonstrate close attention to detail and compliance and help give you the peace of mind you require to outsource such an essential function to a third party.
- Flexibility and customer service
Can they pivot to manage any change in demand? Are they always happy to take your call? Do you feel valued? Will they keep you updated and handle any problems and present you with the solution? Are they friendly people to deal with? Do they make you smile?
If you are considering outsourcing your logistics function to a 3PL, please do get in touch with us here at Masters Logistical. We will tick all of your boxes, and we will make you smile.
Please do get in touch on 01353 648222 and we’ll be delighted to hear from you.