Third-party logistics (3PL) warehouses have become critical stakeholders in creating positive customer experiences. Their ability to maintain the highest level of service in order picking, specialty packaging, inventory management and tracking all contribute to the end user’s experience. If your business depends on third-party logistics providers, you must ensure they have the resources to ensure speedy, accurate delivery to your customers.
Whether your 3PL provides transportation, warehousing, fulfillment, inventory management, or all of the above, customer satisfaction is greatly impacted by their performance. They play a critical role in delivering your products to their final destination. Here we explain how third-party logistics is changing accountability in the supply chain.
Keeping the Focus on Core Business Functions
Logistics is a time-consuming step in the supply chain, meaning it can become a distraction from your core business. This includes managing customer expectations and ensuring the products you produce or distribute can deliver on your promises. However, if you find your team is spending too much time managing the many complex steps of logistics, the rest of your business functions suffer.
When you engage third-party logistics providers, they put the focus back on core business functions. They take over whatever aspects of the supply chain your team is failing to manage, so together, you improve customer experience and increase customer satisfaction. Their role ensures:
- Inventory is accurately reflected in online ordering systems
- Appropriate tracking is used, so customers know where their packages are during shipment
- Your brand is reflected in the order assembly process
- The return process is easier
Improved Efficiency Throughout the Supply Chain
Efficient warehouse management applies economies of scale that streamline the entire delivery process. It begins with providing adequate storage space to manage inventory needs and meet customer demand. The 3PL also creates a streamlined process that makes it easier for their crew to access and pick your top sellers and become better at fulfilling your most frequent orders.
They use tracking systems to maintain accurate inventory numbers to avoid disappointments when orders are delayed. Finally, they use leading-edge scanning technology to ensure the accuracy of orders, even for complex categories with multiple SKUS, sizes, colors, patterns, etc.
Reduced Costs to Pass on Savings
Warehouse management is all about balancing adequate inventory with adequate space. If your space requirements vary, your 3PL has the expertise to predict space requirements to reduce warehousing fees. You keep your inventory at the right levels to meet demand, reduce the space required to decrease warehousing costs, and pass those savings on to your customers at highly competitive prices.
Flexibility to Remain More Competitive
Third-party logistics providers have the level of resources needed to remain responsive to changing customer behavior, both through their team and their space. 3PLs continuously provide valuable insights that help you realize efficiencies that increase the level of service your customers receive. For example, they can recommend areas for same-day deliveries and what areas should only offer next-day deliveries to improve customer service and reduce disappointment. As a result, you remain more competitive.
Analysis to Remain Responsive
3PLs allow you to meet changing market demand in real time. For example, your 3PL can use dynamic slotting/staging to position the umbrellas for easier access to speed up delivery times. Your logistics partner also shares valuable data that allows you to become better at sales forecasting. As a result, you become both proactive and reactive to increase customer satisfaction.
Improved Tracking with Leading Edge Information Technology
Information technology advancements facilitate shipment tracking. This works on both sides of the supply chain, whether you are tracking material to produce a product or products in transit. These systems cost money to deploy, upgrade and manage team training, which means it is difficult for smaller warehouses to utilize this level of software.
However, through a 3PL, you can reap the benefits of collected data and understand the location for deliveries to improve reliability at the user end. The entire streamlined process translates into improved customer service. You can identify issues and create resolutions to ensure your customers experience minimal disruption or inconvenience.
Although you might think accountability begins and ends with your team, you can’t meet customer expectations without a dependable 3PL managing the delivery of materials to your plant or products to your end user.
VeraCore is SaaS order and warehouse management software trusted by top fulfillment companies and 3PLs. Affordable, flexible, easy to use; VeraCore is everything you need to keep clients happy and run a lean operation.
With VeraCore, you can grow your business and handle any challenge with ease. Rules-based automation enables you to control all aspects of your warehouse operation and satisfy each of your clients’ unique requirements.
Hundreds of fulfillment service providers and 10,000+ fulfillment clients place VeraCore at the “core” of their business to get the job done right, for over 40 years.