Managing the supply chain for a warehouse can be a stressful process where performance fluctuates and small details can become a big deal.
It is hard for managers and staff members on the ground to decipher what choices are sound business practice and what constitutes error and oversight in the grander scheme.
Enter the inclusion of third party logistics (3PL) professionals, outsourced bodies who specialise in key functions of an organisation and stand as guns for hire.
The best 3PL warehouse providers end up offering a great deal of tangible value to local companies who suffer from regular deficiencies, but it is not until they take that leap of faith that they appreciate what they give.
Here we will analyse the direct gains that an enterprise can obtain by bringing them into the team and empowering them to oversee performance.
Lowering Company Costs
The reporting and assessments that are delivered by 3PL warehouse providers gives management a clearer picture about the operations that are regularly engaged in. In many instances they will outline how various couriers are price hiking the client, where certain routes are being mismanaged, where stock is being kept past its use-by date, where the conveyor belt is functioning below standard and how the ordering and storage process can be optimized. These elements of oversight bleed the company dry by overpaying for expertise and stretching the resources that are available to the warehouse team.
Identifying Market Opportunities
When customers need stock returned or there are third parties that have to be contacted for parts, there are opportunities in the market where 3PL warehouse providers can leverage them for the company’s benefit. Simple actions that were not previously identified can make a big difference as the manufacturing and retailing of stocked items can suddenly shift the dynamic. Depending on the location of the organisation and the strength of the contacts that have been established, a sound network that connects the dots can suddenly open up avenues that were previously thought impossible.
Identifying Business Shortcomings
3PL warehouse providers will be able to sniff out and pinpoint errors and bugs in the operating system. This goes beyond any functional shortcomings with individual employees who can be judged on performance, because there will be practices that have previously never come under scrutiny where ordering, scheduling, reporting and planning elements are now under the spotlight. That independent third party perspective is a great benefit to access because it will work around dispassionate facts and detailed information. Whilst this revelation might hurt the reputation and ego of some inside the system, 3PL warehouse providers, it is designed to improve the company long-term.
3PL warehouse providers are only brought aboard within the ranks of a company according to the agreement that has been established by management. They can work at arm’s length and offsite where needed, ensuring that there is no blurring of the lines between their role and those tasked with performing for the business. They can be short-term projects that are designed for an audit or end of financial year report, or they can be for the long-term to educate and incorporate key programs that maintains intellectual property. This is an industry that is entirely flexible and dependent on the needs of the organisation.
3PL warehouse providers inject their own experience and expertise into an organisation, and the rewards will be discovered long after they leave the scene. Managers and executives who take the strategic decision to invest in their skill set soon discover that key members within the supply chain have a greater degree of accountability, costs are lowered, opportunities are seized and the enterprise is able to engage a modern healthy business practice.