For some businesses, relying on a third party to provide logistical support is an important step in maintaining profitability and efficiency. However, many factors go into this decision. With so many prospective 3PL providers to choose from, it may take deliberation to find a match for your business.
If you are unsure about how to find the right 3PL provider, consider the following factors before deciding on the best third-party partner for your business. These considerations can help you find the right 3PL provider to best suit your warehouse’s needs.
Before making the first phone call to a prospective 3PL provider, every business owner or manager should assess their supply chain goals. What do you hope to achieve with the help of a 3PL provider? What pain points could a 3PL provider address more effectively compared to dealing with it in-house?
Business owners and managers must also consider the intended reach of their company. For example, the right 3PL provider might differ depending on whether you intend to expand your business regionally or simply focus on your current local markets.
Not all 3PL providers are created equal. Some providers offer more services than others. Some providers might not offer every service a company is looking for, necessitating multiple contracts with other providers to meet the remaining needs. It is therefore crucial to consider all available options before deciding on the right 3PL provider.
In addition to researching what a 3PL provider has to offer, it is also advisable to evaluate their customer service skills. Every provider will claim to have great customer service, so it may be worth validating these claims independently. Ask for customer references and discuss their quality of service with current or past customers. This is often the best way to obtain insight into a provider’s responsiveness and problem-solving capabilities.
Setting up a supply chain and finding the right 3PL provider requires careful consideration of your business’s potential for growth with any potential candidate. After all, entering into a 3PL partnership with no longevity will only lead to problems in the future. A logistics partner that can scale operations to match the growth of a business could be a valuable asset for years to come.
There is value in identifying which prospective 3PL providers have a long tenure in the supply chain industry and which are new to the game. Given the complexities of a reliable warehousing division, selecting a partner with experience in providing logistics could pay dividends.
The importance of company culture cannot be understated. A 3PL provider might look like the perfect choice on paper, but the partnership could be short-lived if their corporate culture is not a good fit for your operations.
At Brown West Logistics, we aim to S.E.R.V.E. all your warehousing needs with the following guiding principles in mind:
To learn more about how our team can meet your needs and exceed your expectations, contact us today.