A third-party logistics provider (3PL) is a company that provides outsourced logistics services to clients. This can include anything from transportation and warehousing to packaging and order fulfilment. 3PLs are different from traditional logistics providers in that they don’t just provide one service, but often offer a range of services that can be customised to fit the needs of their clients.
By taking on some of the logistical responsibilities that would otherwise be handled in-house, a 3PL can help businesses reduce costs, increase efficiency, and improve customer service.
Here’s a quick overview of 3PL services:
- Procurement process – Ordering and receiving goods from other parts of the supply chain. They are responsible for ensuring that all products arrive on time and in good condition, as well as maintaining accurate records of inventory levels.
- Order fulfilment – This involves receiving orders from customers, warehousing them in a secure location, picking and packing them in the correct packaging, shipping them to the customer’s address, and providing customer service support if needed. A 3PL provider can also offer additional services such as returns management, inventory management, and payment processing. This way, you can focus on your core competencies and leave the fulfilment to experts.
- Warehousing Storage – A 3PL provides safe and secure temporary storage for goods in warehouses, that are customised to meet the specific needs of their clients. They offer a variety of services including contract warehousing, specialist storage such as temperature-controlled environments, and high-security storage. They may also provide in-warehouse tracking and positioning, inventory management and auditing.
- Transport – A 3PL can help with the coordination and management of transportation for your goods, including arranging for consolidation and deconsolidation as needed. They can also help ensure that your goods are delivered in a timely and efficient manner.
- International Shipping – If you send goods abroad, a 3PL will handle most of the paperwork involved in international shipping and customs clearance on your behalf. This means that you don’t have to worry about dealing with complex regulations when transporting goods across borders, as they will take care of all these steps.
- Multi-Modal Shipping – This is a system where multiple transportation modes – such as truck, rail, air and sea – are used to ship your goods. This can be extremely beneficial if you’re looking to cut costs and improve efficiency.
There are many reasons why businesses might consider using a 3PL, but the most common is that it can save time and money. Working with a 3PL allows you to outsource your logistics so that you can focus on other aspects of your business. It also gives you access to the latest technology and resources, which can help you optimise your supply chain and improve your overall efficiency.
At LTS, our experienced team of logistics professionals can provide you with the best service and solutions for your company’s needs. As a 3PL provider, we offer several benefits that make us the ideal choice for companies seeking reliable and efficient supply chain and logistics services. We also work closely with each client to create personalised solutions specifically for their needs. If you’d like to learn more about working with us, get in touch today!