For a good decade now, motor carriers have been trying to expand their service offerings to provide a wider service portfolio for their customers. It's a smart move considering large shippers are look...
For a good decade now, motor carriers have been trying to expand their service offerings to provide a wider service portfolio for their customers. It’s a smart move considering large shippers are looking for one-stop shopping, the penetration of outsourcing is growing, and margins tend to be better on the third-party logistics front. Although transportation is already the most outsourced logistics service, as indicated by the results from the 14th Annual Logistics Outsourcing Survey published this year, there are many areas such as customs brokerage, warehousing, forwarding and cross docking that offer growth potential for carriers. For the outsourcing relationship to work, however, the Logistics Outsourcing Survey has identified three key elements:
Openness, transparency and good communication: 74% of shipper respondents and 77% of 3PL respondents to the survey identified this factor as contributing to successful shipper experiences with 3PLs.
Personal relationships on an operational level: This factor, agreed to by 65% of shipper respondents and 72% of 3PL respondents, suggests that 3PL-shipper relationships are best served when members of both organizations develop personal relationships to enhance the people, process, and technology attributes needed for successful collaboration, the survey’s authors conclude.
Flexibility of the 3PL to accommodate shippers’ needs and the ability to achieve cost and service objectives: Shipper respondents and 3PL respondents rank these similarly, however, there seems to be slightly more agreement by both parties on the importance of cost reductions than on service improvement.
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