Selecting a Third Party Logistics Provider Part 2: Top 10 Questions to Ask
There are many questions and concerns to address when searching for a third party logistics provider. To ensure you select the best fit for your business it is imperative to ask questions and become educated about how their operations will fit your needs. Although there are many questions to ask, we have determined the top ten most important questions to ask when vetting a potential third party logistics service provider.
1. How long have they been in business/ how many years of experience do they have?
These details can help determine if the logistics provider is established enough to handle your valued inventory and have the required industry knowledge to help your business adapt to changes.
2. Are they close to logistics hubs?
Being near logistics hubs such as major highways, ports and railways may give your business a strategic business advantage, potentially reducing transportation costs.
3. How large is the facility and how much space is currently available?
Available space within the facility is a key factor to consider when selecting your provider. Your inventory levels will fluctuate according to demand and the same will happen within your 3PLs warehouse. Ensuring space is sufficient even at the busiest times for both parties are necessary to guaranteeing a regular flow of product to customers.
4. What are the hours of operation?
Ensuring your service provider’s hours of operation meet your needs and allow for the needed output will also help to guarantee product is delivered on time to your customers.
5. What type of products are typically stored in this facility?
In some cases product mixing can be dangerous or hazardous. To help prevent damage to inventory, verify the facility is following proper mixing protocol.
6. What are the facility’s technology capabilities?
To help reduce your costs automation and increased technology are useful. Having these tools at your disposal can help reduce labor costs of the service provider, which can be passed on to you.
7. What services can they provided including value-add services?
Ensure your needs are met by verifying that required services are available with your chose service provider.
8. What security precautions are taken?
For high value inventory this component is very crucial. To help guarantee the safety of your inventory ask questions about what security is active within the facility in question.
9. Can they meet compliance requirements?
In addition to following product mixing standards, facilities also must comply with governmental and organizational standards. Being able to provide proof of regulatory compliance is required for the security of both parties.
10. How is the pricing structure designed?
Protect your business from hidden fees and unnecessarily high costs by reviewing the pricing structure in detail before signing. This will help your business reduce costs.
To learn more about selecting a third party logistics provider for your business contact Wavelength Logistics experts today.