As your company grows, you may realize challenges arising regarding your customer demographics, locations, updated manufacturing methods, new technology, and more. Meeting these challenges, and continuing to provide the best service possible to your customers is only possible if you are able to adapt to these changes. While running your business from your home office seems like the affordable option, a growing business needs the ability to expand while still delivering the same efficiency and quality service. This is where third-party logistics service providers come in. 3PL fulfillment, distribution, and warehousing services in Toronto will help you stay afloat as your sales, customer base, and demands grow. What exactly are 3PL providers and what do they offer? Here’s what you need to know.
What Is a 3PL Service Provider?
3PL service providers offer a variety of services and processes that help businesses reduce costs, improve efficiency and expand capabilities. These providers are flexible and scalable to help you accommodate the needs of your business. You can opt for a short-term partnership with these providers for peak seasons or choose a long-term solution to meet your goals for growth and expansion. Here’s what 3PL providers can do for you.
Our 3PL Services
If you, like many small to medium-sized businesses, do not have the resources or manpower to manage your e-commerce operations in your home office, a 3PL provider can empower you with affordable, professional services like online ordering, delivery services, warehousing, and more.
Warehousing & Distribution
Understanding how to utilize technology to boost efficiency is something 3PL providers excel at. It’s their job to help you implement technology to make it easier for customers to order your products online, track product movement, and more. A 3PL provider with effective warehouse management systems (WMS) can help you improve the sorting, picking, packing, and storing processes in the warehouse to simplify your work load.
Supply Chain Management
The active management of activities in the supply chain to increase customer value and excel against competitors is known as supply chain management (SCM). This service is provided by 3PL companies to help businesses develop and run their supply chain efficiently and effectively. From product development, sourcing, production, and logistics, to various and necessary information systems, a 3PL provider can manage and coordinate your activities.
Inventory management involves certain processes and systems that manage the supply chain, demand forecasting, inventory, and reverse logistics. Tools involved in inventory management systems (IMS) include safety stock, economic ordering quantity, cost of goods, customer-managed inventory, inventory turnover, vendor-managed inventory, and more. Each industry requires a unique level of IMS, which is why some 3PL providers utilize lean practices to help you use only what you need in terms of plant rental, standing inventory, shipping costs, etc.
Transportation & Delivery Services
Transportation is one of the most important areas in your supply chain and having the right partner can make all the difference. Choosing a 3PL provider who has warehouses near your customers will save you money in transportation, and allow you to deliver orders faster. They can also ensure consistent and safe delivery of your products.
Packaging & Repackaging Services
To meet the unique needs of your business, a 3PL provider will be flexible with its packaging and repackaging services. Packaging is more than just putting something in a box. It requires proper documentation, tracking, and sorting to name a few. From handling and record-keeping to weighing and pricing, your 3PL provider’s procedures should help you get the most of your packaging and repackaging at an affordable cost. Regarding repackaging specifically, this value-added service is designed to help you problem-solve when a change or reconfiguration needs to be made to a product.
It is important that your 3PL provider implement continuous improvement (CI) to improve your products, services, and processes. By doing this, they can help you make incremental improvements over time, or help you make breakthrough improvements that immediately take effect.
Benefits of Working with a 3PL Provider
There are many advantages to working with a 3PL provider. Here are some of the biggest improvements to your business with this partnership:
- Cost savings: With their vast network of resources around the area, they can provide you with the manpower, efficiency, and convenience to help you save money.
- Flexibility: Your business is constantly changing, and a 3PL provider with flexibility can help you accommodate those changes as they come.
- Efficiency: 3PL providers can make your business run better than ever. With lower cost per unit shipping, faster transportation, reduced delivery times, and more, you can focus on your core specialties like product development, sales, marketing, and customer service.
- Customer experience: You can achieve faster, more reliable delivery times, improve tracking and visibility to your customers, reduce the risk of damaged or incorrect product packaging, and much more. These benefits improve your quality of service and as a result, make your customers happier.
- International reach: The end goal for most companies is to expand further, so when you want to reach customers in a different country, you’ll need a partner that can meet international regulations, customs clearance, and communication expectations. A 3PL provider can help you enter new markets with their established and extensive networks.
How a Third-Party Logistics Company Can Help Your Business
A 3PL provider can help you thrive in challenging situations such as costs, logistics complexity, and the ever-changing customer demands. They can help you deal with these challenges before they hinder your success and they can bring you many additional benefits with their robust software and technology. If you are looking for the right company to partner with, Lean Supply Solutions is the answer. We rise to the challenge of meeting our clients’ needs through our services which include product fulfillment, warehousing and distribution, e-commerce fulfillment, warehouse pick and pack, order fulfillment, and more. To learn more about outsourcing to our 3PL logistics in Toronto, or to ask any questions, contact us today.