3PL: the advantage of flexibility for retailers
Published on 15 October 2018
Working in a very fast-paced environment, retailers today have to be more and more responsive to their customers’ demands. For brands, logistics has naturally become a distinguishing factor that carries with it high stakes. As such, retailers are increasingly relying on logistics providers that are capable of managing uncertainty with a high level of responsiveness: 3PL providers. What challenges are they confronted with when it comes to meeting their clients’ transport and logistics needs? Let’s take a look at the sector trends and solutions for boosting responsiveness.
Managing uncertainty: an everyday life situation for 3PL providers
Accustomed to meeting the demands of several clients at one time, 3PL providers are organized so they can rapidly intervene based on needs. These logistics providers have an immense capacity to mobilize the physical means and human resources they have available to manage seasonality and uncertainty in sales forecasts and orders.
To tackle unexpected events, however, they need to be equipped with tools, such as collaboration platforms which enable them to manage uncertainty. Because they work in an ecosystem that is forever expanding, they must share information in order to have end-to-end visibility of the supply chain and properly manage unexpected events.
Further reading: MANQUE LE LIEN >> Supply Chain: what perspectives for 3PL?
Quickly becoming operational: a requirement for 3PL providers
Today, clients are gradually pulling away from the management of hazards and seasonality. These requirements are popping up more and more often in the specifications of large distributors. To snag contracts, 3PL providers are thus obligated to invest in these areas in order to stand out from the crowd. They have to quickly become operational in logistics activities.
At the same time, contract terms are becoming shorter and shorter with 3-year commitments being cut to 1 year or even 6 months. Faced with this trend, 3PL providers must reach maximum efficiency in a very short time, within 6 months or 2 months for e-commerce. To structure the supply chain as quickly as possible, 3PL providers have no other choice but to equip themselves with warehouse management MANQUE LE LIEN >> (WMS) and transport management MANQUE LE LIEN >> (TMS) software.