As a small business owner, you are constantly on the lookout for ways to optimize your company's day-to-day operations. In researching ways to accomplish this goal, you may have come across the concept of 3PL (or third-party logistics) - a supply chain solution that would allow you to outsource your distribution and fulfillment needs. But is it a viable option for your small business?
How to Know if 3PL is the Right Solution for Your Small Business
If your company is still in its infancy, with packing and shipping only taking up a small portion of an average week, 3PL may not be the best solution for you. However, if your business has been growing for a while and you feel like you are spending too much time fulfilling your orders, it may be time to think about finding a third-party logistics partner.
Your chosen 3PL company will generally provide you with:
• Warehousing space on an as-needed basis
• The labor needed to fulfill your orders
• Bulk discounts on shipping costs
In providing you with these benefits, your third-party logistics partner will make it much easier for you to focus on your company's core strengths.
The space that you previously used to store inventory can be used to expand your production capacity. The employees that used to work in your distribution department can be re-trained to fulfill more profitable roles. And the money that you once spent on shipping can be used to boost your marketing efforts.
To put it simply, if your company is currently struggling to keep up with its orders, and you would like to enjoy all of the benefits outlined above, there is a good chance that 3PL is the right fit for you.
Finding the Right 3PL Partner
If you want to ensure that your switch from in-house fulfillment to third-party logistics runs smoothly, you will need to ensure that you have the right partner by your side throughout the process. So, what exactly should you look for in a 3PL?
First and foremost, you should try to find a logistics partner that has a track record of success in the industry. The best companies should be able to show you a list of references that you can call to verify their commitment to reliability and customer service. When a 3PL can show that they have achieved superior results in the past, you can feel confident that they are likely to do so again in the future.
Your ideal third-party logistics company should also offer flexibility and scalability. In other words, you need them to be able to keep up with your company's fulfillment needs as you continue to grow. By making sure that your 3PL can scale alongside your organization, you can save yourself the hassle of having to find a new partner a few years down the line.
When you need a third-party logistics partner you can count on, there is only one company you need to turn to - American Manufacturing Solutions. We have been helping U.S. companies with their distribution and fulfillment needs for years, and we would love to add your name to our long list of satisfied customers. To learn more about our services, just contact us online today.