Do You or Don’t You Need a Distributor? Use These 4 Indicators to Find Out

If your company moves goods or services from one source to others, you’re doing some form of distribution. It could be a complex distribution channel that goes from raw materials to finished goods and involves multiple channels of producers, suppliers and users. Or, it could be a simple distribution from the source to the final customer.

Whatever the extent of your distribution, it’s important for any business to evaluate whether distribution, including the movement of payment and reverse logistics, should be handled in-house or by a third-party logistics (3PL) provider.

But how do you determine whether or not you need a distributor. These four factors will help you figure it out.

1. Do Your Goods Present Distribution Challenges?

The size, weight, and shape of your goods may require your company to allocate additional resources to distribute them. Likewise, the amount of goods your company needs to distribute also can present challenges throughout the year.

When goods present distribution challenges, it’s always best to use a 3PL equipped to handle them. When choosing the best 3PL firm for your business, be sure to look at its capacity for distribution. It’s a factor that varies among 3PLs and will make a difference in how the logistics provider can meet your needs.

You might want to focus your 3PL search on those with multiple facilities, like Brendamour Warehousing, which as four state-of-the-art distribution facilities.

2. What Are Your Customers’ Needs?

Just as your goods may present challenges, so may the customers you serve. Some may need the goods bundled a certain way. Others may need their orders divided into separate shipments per quarter. Still others may need rush orders to meet seasonal demands.

A 3PL can help you evaluate your customers’ needs and fulfill them quickly. What’s more, a 3PL’s warehouse management system maintains ordering history profiles that trend the needs of your customers so you can better meet them in the future.

3. What Are Your Company’s Distribution Needs?

Besides meeting your customers’ distribution needs, your company also has to meet goals set by stakeholders. For example, if your investors have set a timetable for expansion into other market areas, outsourcing distribution can help meet those goals if your company is short on resources.

Public warehousing and distribution providers specialize in meeting the comprehensive needs of companies, no matter their type or size.

4. What Are Your Short-Term and Long-Term Distribution Goals?

When it comes to market focus, all companies approach it differently. Some do business in certain regions, while others reach out countrywide, or even globally.

If your short-term goals are to start out small and then expand your reach, you might opt to handle distribution in-house. But as your company expands, it might benefit more from the wide range of distribution routes that 3PLs provide.

Public warehousing and distribution services are core activities of third party logistics providers. They provide a means of getting your goods where they need to go that is efficient and cost-effective. And because their systems and processes are flexible, they can scale up as your company’s market reach expands.

Keep in mind, however, that some distribution providers may be limited in their reach. Some may service a certain region or not provide international trade. Others, like Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services, offers local, nationwide, and international distribution services.

In addition, if your company relies on manufacturers in other countries, you need a distributor, like Brendamour Warehousing, that not only handles import and export services, but is also certified as a foreign trade zone.

When determining your need for a distributor, it’s important to consider 3PLs that are capable of achieving both your short- and long-term goals.

When You Need Distribution, Rely on Brendamour

If an evaluation of your company’s distribution needs determines a 3PL to be your best solution, we invite you to contact Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services. We will listen to your needs, evaluate your current processes, and show you how we can meet the needs of your company, its investors, and your customers.

Why Your 3PL’s Business Continuity Procedure Matters to Your Business

Expect the unexpected.

It’s a scenario all companies need to prepare for to ensure business operations continue as usual if systems crash, software applications get buggy, weather events cause outages, or some other disruption occurs.

Those preparations need to cover both internal and external business activities. In particular, companies that use a third party logistics (3PL) provider for warehousing, distribution, or any other part of their supply chain logistics need to ensure comprehensive procedures are in place to guarantee business continuity when any unexpected circumstance arises.

The first place to start is with this basic question to your 3PL: What is your business continuity plan?

Business Continuity Factors

A business continuity plan is a strategy that describes how business operations will continue if a company is impacted by any type of unplanned situation or disaster. It typically includes how a company will recover its operations or, if necessary, move operations if its current location is damaged.

For a 3PL, a business continuity plan addresses how its core functions and services will continue during an unexpected interruption. A 3PL communicates this plan with all businesses that use its services, as well as the suppliers those businesses employ.

The main 3PL business continuity factors that matter to your business are:

  • Its infrastructure backup. If a 3PL’s warehouse management system crashes or cannot operate for whatever reason, it impacts your company’s order fulfillment and processing. It’s important to make sure the 3PL has a backup for its entire system, including inventory files, orders, and distribution records, as well as the proper backup servers and IT support. This ensures no key information is lost that would impact service to your customers.
  • Its inventory management backup. If there is a system failure, the 3PL should have some backup plan to manage your inventory in its warehouse. This might entail actual paper copies of inventory sheets or a backup cloud server. An inventory management backup plan is essential for maintaining operations during any type of interruption.
  • Its distribution backup to keep picking, sorting, shipping, and other distribution processes moving. Such a business continuity plan needs to be in place in the event an unplanned event causes the warehouse management system or inventory management system to go down or a power outage renders the use of scanners inoperable. Such contingencies ensure your customers receive their orders correctly and on time.

Is Your 3PL Prepared?

While most 3PLs are prepared to move your goods more effectively and efficiently than what you could do in-house, not all have the capabilities of keeping goods moving when a disruption occurs.

For instance, ask your 3PL how it would handle:

  • Staying on schedule if its systems crash or its equipment breaks down;
  • Distribution during a labor strike or slowdown;
  • Order processing and fulfillment if there is a power outage;
  • Weather-related events, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, blizzards, wildfires, etc.
  • Massive congestion, accidents, or interruptions on distribution routes, such as ports, rail lines, or highways;
  • Terrorist attacks;
  • The loss of a major facility or vendor in the supply chain.

If your 3PL is not able to demonstrate business continuity in these situations, your business could suffer both in profits and customer service.

Comprehensive Business Continuity

No company should miss orders or have goods delivered late or incorrectly because a 3PL does not have a business continuity plan in place. That’s why it’s so essential to partner with a 3PL that can conduct warehousing and distribution functions in any unforeseen situation.

At Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services, we consistently review and update our business continuity plans. Not only do we have solid plans in place for all the possible disruptions that can occur to our 3PL facilities and functions, we also implement business continuity planning for any unexpected actions that your company may encounter.

At Brendamour, our warehousing, distribution and logistics business continuity plan encompasses:

  • A thorough analysis of all types of interruptions that can occur and educating all those involved in your company’s supply chain about how they will be addressed to ensure a continuous improvement process.
  • Strategies to minimize risks to critical business functions caused by a disruption.
  • Remediation steps that include alternatives for maintaining warehousing, distribution and logistics processes when a disruption occurs or getting them back on track quickly in the event of a disaster.

With our comprehensive business continuity plan, Brendamour Warehousing has backup processes ready to go immediately when the unexpected happens.

To learn more about our approach to business continuity planning, contact Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services. At Brendamour, we look at business continuity planning as another tool to enhance our partnership with your business.

 

Is Your Supply Chain Helping or Hindering Customer Satisfaction?

All companies strive for excellent customer satisfaction to ensure repeat business, referrals, and brand loyalty. But often times, businesses overlook one key avenue for enhancing customer satisfaction – their supply chain.

A supply chain consists of the different companies involved in getting your goods to market. Basically, it’s every company that has some form of contact with your product. Some typical networks of providers within a supply chain are a procurer of raw materials, a manufacturer, an assembler, a warehouse and distribution center, and a sales network.

A supply chain optimized to its fullest delivers lowers costs and higher customer satisfaction. But how can you determine if your company’s supply chain is optimized to realize these benefits? Here are some things to consider to help you answer that question.

A Supply Chain Helps Increase Customer Satisfaction If It:

  • Is optimized from start to finish, thus reducing your time to market;
  • Invests in new technologies to improve operations;
  • Has a warehouse management system that can be integrated with your company’s systems so your organization can easily share logistics information;
  • Can lower your costs so you beat the retail prices of your competition;
  • Has high performing distribution operations that allow you to achieve fast delivery times;
  • Is streamlined to deliver excellent customer service;
  • Provides transparency so if a problem arises with a customer, you’re able to determine why it occurred and how you’re going to fix it;
  • Is prepared for the unexpected.

A Supply Chain Hinders Customer Satisfaction If It:

  • Falls short in its networks, processes, channels, or services due to outdated technologies;
  • Does not consistently produce quality work;
  • Causes the most customer complaints;
  • Is slow in distributing your goods;
  • Results in a high number of damaged packages;
  • Does not give you a competitive advantage;
  • Does not have actionable plans in place to handle the unexpected;
  • Impacts your profitability in a negative way.

How to Boost Your Supply Chain

A supply chain that helps you meet and even exceed customer satisfaction starts with the companies you partner with to provide the services you need within your supply chain.

When it comes to warehousing, distribution, and other logistics, such as order fulfillment and processing, you need to partner with a third party logistics (3PL) provider that has the right systems, sophisticated technology, and streamlined approaches in place to ensure a profitable supply chain.

As a 3PL, Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services has everything in place to help your company succeed in delivering the best in customer satisfaction. Just take a look at our track record:

  • Recipient of numerous warehousing, distribution, and logistics rewards;
  • Recognized as a leader in warehousing, distribution, 3PL, and logistics operations;
  • Demonstrated innovative thinking, flexibility, and proactive measures that translate into total customer satisfaction;
  • Efficient and accurate handling of products that saves your business time and money.

What’s more, Brendamour has the systems in place to increase inventory efficiency, reduce errors and handling damages, and lessen delivery times.

If your company is looking to enhance its supply chain to boost customer satisfaction, let Brendamour Warehousing show you how we can reduce your costs while increasing your company’s profitability and customer satisfaction rates.

Contact us today to learn more. When it comes to your supply chain, your business deserves the highest level of service, and so do your customers. And that’s exactly what you’ll receive from Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services.

 

Why Lift Trucks Matter When Selecting a Public Warehouse for Your Business

One type of lift truck utilized at Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services

Lift trucks are critical pieces of equipment in a public warehouse. They are essential for moving your goods throughout the warehouse in a safe manner.

In order to minimize damage to your goods, checking the type of hydraulic lift equipment in use before selecting a public warehouse should be an important part of your decision-making.

Why should a public warehouse’s lift trucks matter to your business? Take a look.

Damage Control

If a public warehouse does not use the proper type of forklift to handle your goods, damage to the containers or pallet rack collapse can result.

Damaged goods can cause a significant loss to your business and impact your customers’ businesses as well.

Lift Capacity

All lift truck models have a lift capacity, but not all storage facilities are equipped with vehicles that can handle all dimensions and weights.

A public warehouse with a fleet of forklifts capable of handling large loads, both in height and weight, as well as nonstandard dimensions, can better serve your needs and prevent damage to your goods.

Better Space Utilization

With public warehousing, you pay for the amount of space you use. The type of lift trucks used in the facility can help optimize the utilization of space for your goods, thus saving you money.

Forklifts come in all sorts of configurations and options, so look for public warehouses that are equipped with lift vehicles that optimize space and use of labor.

Performance Versatility

You’re probably familiar with the standard forklift, but there are other lift trucks that modern public warehouses utilize to provide more versatility in moving goods.

For example, reach trucks are best for safely storing your goods on racked pallets, while an order selector vehicle is best for manually loading and unloading less than pallet loads on racking systems.

In addition, lift truck operators can add different attachments to standard forklifts to accommodate goods requiring special handling.

For instance, Brendamour Warehousing uses a sideshift attachment that slides left and right for more accuracy and flexibility in placing your goods on our racking system. There’s also a fork positioner attachment for ease of placement of different crate and pallet sizes.

There are also attachments to handle slip sheets when pallets are not used, paper roll clamps, prongs, large and small size drums, carton clamps, and fork extensions for handling longer loads.

Some public warehouses are also equipped with other types of pallet handling vehicles, such as turret trucks, to give them more versatility in stocking pallets on either side of an aisle or to accommodate different aisle widths or space sizes.

Ease of Trailer Loading

Loading trailer trucks to get your goods on their way to their final destination is another key usage of lift trucks. You want to be sure when selecting a public warehouse that it can handle loading of truck carriers, parcel carriers, and local delivery trucks.

At Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services, we have the equipment and automated conveyor systems to handle a diverse range of goods, no matter their size or shape, and whether they are in crates, pallets, bundles, totes, reusable containers, drums, non-pallet unit loads, parcels, carts, rolls, loose and oversized, or bulk materials.

Brendamour Warehousing Offers Top-Notch Materials Handling

Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services is equipped with a wide array of lift trucks and modern hydraulic lift equipment to accommodate the types of goods we store and the manner in which they come into our warehouse.

Our fleet of forklift trucks with box clamp, roll clamp and slipsheet attachments gives us the push/pull system we need to handle your load with the best of care and in the most cost-efficient manner.

In addition to our state-of-the-art equipment, the warehouse staff at Brendamour is highly skilled and certified in the maintenance and operation of all the types of forklifts and hydraulic lift equipment we utilize.

We also give our drivers the opportunity to refresh their driving skills with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) approved safety courses, as well as training in racking systems, rack load tolerances and rack inspections. Our drivers are also well trained in stacking loads to ensure the weight is balanced.

Trust your goods to the experts in warehousing, distribution and logistics. We have the expertise in materials handling to ensure your goods are well taken care of when in our care. Contact Brendamour and start realizing the many benefits of using our public warehouse with third party logistics (3PL) services.

Is Your Business Ready for the Future of Logistics?

Emerging technologies are becoming more commonplace in our lives, from smart appliances to smart cars and everything in between. In the area of logistics, the future holds both technology and innovation.

But is your business, or more importantly, the logistics end of your business, ready for the future? In order to keep up and take advantage of the emerging technologies and innovative solutions, businesses may want to switch to a public warehouse with logistics services, more commonly referred to as a third-party logistics (3PL) provider.

The Future of Warehousing and Distribution

Public warehousing and distribution is in the midst of a transformation. To provide its clients with faster, more reliable, inexpensive, and sustainable service, all sorts of technologies are being integrated into warehouse management systems.

At the forefront is the Internet of Things (IoT), which allows devices to communicate with each other without human intervention through an Internet infrastructure. One of the applications you will begin to see in a public warehouse is machine-to-machine (M2M) technology.

Third-party service providers who use this technology to its fullest can provide you with reduced overall costs, as well as faster services and less waste.

Also not too far in the distant future, 3PLs will offer 3D printing. This technology will allow logistics providers to offer its clients a cost-effective means of replicating products or repairing parts that use metals, composite materials, or plastic.

And we’re sure you’ve heard the talk surrounding drones to deliver goods to your customers. You may also see public warehouses using drones to move goods within their facilities to perform warehousing and shipping processes.

But due to regulatory, safety, reliability, and cost concerns, it might be some time before drone delivery is incorporated into logistics.

Also becoming close to reality in the not too distance future are self-driving vehicles. Driverless equipment, which feature electronic eyes and hearing sensors, can be used to navigate a warehouse without human intervention.

The technology would allow 3PLs to improve safety and reduce costs, with the savings passed on to their clients.

Sustainable and Compliant Logistics

Companies are already moving toward transparency and end-to-end visibility. But in the future, customers will be more deliberate in choosing to do business only with those companies that do not harm the environment or the economy with their logistics processes.

Part of this effort will be near shoring, or moving manufacturing from places like Asia and bringing them closer to the end user to reduce transportation costs. Near shoring also is a means to meet consumer demand by ensuring the sustainability of goods and reducing the environmental impact of global transportation.

Logistics providers offer a way to help companies conduct business in a sustainable and compliant manner.

Customized Logistics for Each Client

Flexibility has always been an advantage to using public warehousing and distribution. This flexibility allows 3PLs to incorporate the latest technological advances across their entire operations.

Technological innovations also enable 3PLs to develop new processes to address future trends. This opens the door for 3PLs to provide even greater specialized services to their clients. By doing so, they will be able to move completely away from a one-size-fits-all way of doing business to customized services that meet the specific needs of each individual client.

Position Your Business for the Future

Businesses that adapt to these new technologies are certain to realize better processes, enhanced customer service, and a more profitable bottom line.

At Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services, we embrace the technology that will shape the future of public warehousing, distribution, and logistics.

For specifics, simply contact Brendamour to learn more about the technology in use at our warehousing facilities and our approach to the emerging logistics technologies of the future.

Does Your Business Need a Specialized 3PL?

Most third party logistics (3PL) providers offer general logistics services which, for the most part, serve businesses that need just basic warehousing and distribution services. But what about those businesses that need specialized logistics services?

That’s where a niche 3PL comes in, providing specific processes to handle specialized logistics. While not as abundant as traditional logistics providers, specialized logistics services providers (SLSPs) are increasing throughout the U.S. as more and more businesses require customization and greater logistics resources to remain competitive in a cost-effective manner in today’s marketplace.

Determine If Your Business Requires Specialized 3PL Services

If you answer “Yes” to any of these questions, your business most likely would benefit from a niche 3PL instead of a general logistics provider.

  1. Do you need special warehousing of your goods? This would include things like raw ingredients warehousing, refrigerated or frozen foods warehousing, and first in, first out warehousing and distribution.
  2. Do you require specialized processes for your orders? Some examples might be light assembly or cleanup of products, bundling of products, and customized packing, labeling, or inspection of goods before being distributed.
  3. Do you have a specific logistics situation that your business is unable to effectively handle in-house with existing resources? This could include freight management, pallet management, down stacking, cross docking, recycling, and return processing.
  4. Do you need labor specifically trained to handle your niche logistics concerns? This ranges from knowledge in warehouse sanitation and product staging to freight receiving and food freight integrity.
  5. Does your business need the services of a foreign trade zone?

What to Expect From a Specialized 3PL

Niche 3PLs have processes and procedures in place to ensure your company’s specialized needs are properly met. This is carried out through a strategic partnership agreement with your business that ensures open communications, increased efficiency of the warehousing and distribution of your goods, decreased dock time, and established business protocols, such as invoicing, order management, and customer communications.

With a specialized 3PL, your business realizes:

  • Customized picking and packing;
  • Specialized order processing and order fulfillment;
  • Proper handling of your goods by highly trained 3PL employees to meet applicable federal and state mandates;
  • Implementation of high quality control standards to ensure only products in good condition get distributed;
  • Regular reviews of operations to ensure they are meeting your company’s goals.

Brendamour Is Your Specialized 3PL

With four locations strategically located to serve the entire U.S., and a designated foreign trade zone provider, Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services has been meeting the specialized needs of businesses since 1983.

Brendamour’s comprehensive logistics services are designed to precisely provide the warehousing, distribution and other logistic services your business needs. Among our specialties are warehousing and distribution of bulk storage, raw materials, food grade goods, finished goods, machinery storage, special needs packing services, and import and export.

Contact us and tell us about your company’s needs. There are no customized logistics too big or too small for us to handle, plus you don’t need to be a big business to utilize the services of a specialized 3PL provider. Brendamour Warehousing accommodates all business types and sizes.

Our highly trained team looks forward to serving your specialized warehousing, distribution and other logistics needs to help your business remain competitive and successful.

 

Does Your Business Need a Cloud Based WMS?

You’ve probably been hearing a lot about the Cloud. After all, it’s responsible for a growing number of tasks you perform daily. In fact, you probably access apps, movies, music, photos, documents, and services from the Cloud, and even use the Cloud for data storage and backup.

Warehousing and distribution also uses the Cloud to provide a web-based warehouse management system (WMS). However, despite its benefits, studies show very few businesses are taking advantage of the technology. Perhaps it’s because their questions are not being answered.

If you have questions about web-based WMS, Brendamour Warehousing is a great source for getting answers. To get started, here are answers to some basic questions you may have when deciding whether a cloud based WMS is right for your business.

What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing means using the Internet instead of your computer’s hard drive to store and access data and programs.

For businesses, cloud computing does away with having to build and maintain an in-house computing infrastructure, such as servers.

How does a cloud based warehouse management system work?

Businesses have several options for implementing a Cloud WMS:

  • Software-as-a-service (SaaS) – Your company would subscribe to an application accessible over the Web.
  • Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) – Your company would customize its own applications for use by everyone in the company.
  • Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) – Your company rents out an infrastructure from giants like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.
  • Third party logistics provider (3PL) – Your company uses a 3PL, like Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services, to handle its warehousing, distribution, and other logistical needs you may have.

Advanced 3PLs use a web-based WMS to provide their customers with real-time, secure access to their inventory, order tracking, and shipping status. For example, at Brendamour Warehousing, you can check your inventory, submit orders and receipts, and track shipments 24/7 from wherever you have Internet access. That includes a smartphone, laptop, workstation, home or business computer, tablet, or any other type of mobile device.

Will a Cloud WMS work with my existing infrastructure?

One of the many features of a cloud based warehouse management system is its compatibility. Companies that made the switch have experienced:

  • Easy integration with their other systems;
  • Flexibility that allows customization to their operations;
  • Scalability to grow with their business;

How will my company benefit from a cloud based WMS?

Studies show that businesses currently using a WMS in the Cloud realize numerous benefits, including:

  • Access to information in real time;
  • Reduced labor costs by 25 percent;
  • Reduced overall costs by 21 percent;
  • Savings from eliminated IT costs for hardware, software, upgrades, maintenance, data storage, and security.

With these benefits, the return on investment (ROI) in switching to a cloud based warehouse management system is realized at a faster rate.

How does my business get started with a cloud based WMS?

For most companies, using a public warehouse 3PL is the most efficient and cost-effective way to go to realize the benefits of a web-based warehouse management system. That’s because the WMS is already in place and your business is only charged for the warehousing, distribution, and logistics services it uses.

At Brendamour Warehousing, we’re always available to answer your questions and help you decide the best WMS approach for your business. When you’re ready to explore cloud based WMS and the benefits your company can realize, simply contact Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services. We’re in the business of helping you reach your warehousing, distribution, and logistics goals.

What Every CEO Should Know About 3PL Providers

When it comes to opportunities, CEOs look at the big picture and weigh all options based on the company’s vision, mission, and objectives. Few CEOs have a perfect success record; some opportunities can turn to failures if not executed properly.

But when it comes to outsourcing a company’s warehousing, distribution, and logistics to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider, rarely is it a failure. In fact, businesses who take non-core activities out of the mix of their in-house functions can focus more resources on core activities and realize improved results to their bottom line.

As with all company decisions, though, CEOs should fully investigate the business opportunities a 3PL provider can bring to the table, especially these three key benefits.

1. Better Management of Resources

Successful businesses know what their core functions are and allocate their resources to them. Trying to do both core and non-core functions to their fullest will drain your resources faster, lead to ineffectiveness in one or more areas, and negatively impact your profit margins.

Doesn’t it make more business sense to outsource non-core functions to a company that specializes in that area? Take warehousing and distribution as an example. Why stretch your in-house resources on these non-core functions when there are companies that are equipped to do it much better than your business ever can because it’s their core competency.

According to the 2014 Third-Party Logistics Study conducted by Penn State University, companies that switch to a 3PL provider realized an average inventory cost reduction of six percent, an average distribution cost reduction of 11 percent, and an average fixed logistics cost reduction of 23 percent.

As a CEO, it’s important to look at non-core functions and analyze how much of the company’s resources are going towards them, thus taking away from the main reason of being in business.

With warehousing and distribution alone, think about the money your company would save by shedding their related assets, such as the costs of the warehouse facility, equipment, software, utilities, insurance, taxes, security, maintenance, labor, etc.

2. More Extensive and Current Technology

In the world of logistics, technology is key in accurately tracking the movement of goods. Having the right computer systems, software, and equipment to properly do the job isn’t enough. They also have to be updated regularly with the latest technological advances to meet the competitive demands of the marketplace.

CEOs should consider how their logistics compare to their competitors. If your competition is doing a better job, it’s going to hurt your business.

Take this scenario: Your inventory is managed in-house with a warehouse management system that has not been updated in many years. Your competitor uses a 3PL company with the latest technology. Your company is more at risk of having a stock-out, forcing your customers to buy from the competition.

The question to consider is: Will you ever win that customer back?

3. Improved Customer Satisfaction

When it comes to fulfillment, companies are coming up with all sorts of solutions to get goods to customers faster than ever before. It quickly is becoming a defining factor for consumers in choosing one company over another.

A 3PL provider is already established and equipped with the necessary tools, technology, equipment, and personnel to enhance fulfillment and ensure accuracy at the same time.

By partnering with a 3PL, your company not only builds a more positive customer satisfaction culture, it builds more rewarding customer relationships and higher service levels.

Are You Hurting the Company?

That’s the question CEOs need to ask themselves by not outsourcing non-core competencies. Technology is quickly changing the warehousing, distribution and logistics industry, making the decision to switch to a 3PL company all the more urgent.

Is your company losing money or straining its resources by doing non-core logistics functions in-house? Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services can assist you with your analysis.

Contact Brendamour today to discuss a business strategy that is best for your company.

Use This Easy Process for Selecting a 3PL Provider

So, you’ve determined it’s best for your company to outsource its warehousing, distribution, and other logistics so company resources can be totally focused on core activities. Okay, now what?

You need a way to compare third-party logistics (3PL) providers that is comprehensive, yet doesn’t take up a lot of your time.

Here is an easy process that gets you the information you need to make your decision in a fast and easy manner.

How to Select a 3PL Company

To make the selection process as effective and efficient as possible for your business, here is a streamlined process consisting of five steps.

Step 1: Create a request for quotation (RFQ)

This document should include all the logistics services you are seeking to outsource. Be sure to give complete and detailed requirements, specifications, scope of work, etc.

Step 2: Identify 3PLs to Receive Your RFQ

Companies that provide warehousing, distribution, and other services differ in the extent of their offerings, the manner in which they operate, their use of the latest technology, their prices, and the number of warehouse facilities.

In addition to including 3PL providers that are located in the same area as your business, also consider those that may be in the same region, or closest to your company’s target market areas. Think to the future as well and look at things like scalability, flexibility, and global capabilities.

Step 3: Review Proposals from 3PL Companies

As proposals come in, it’s helpful to create a spreadsheet to enter key information for comparison purposes.

The spreadsheet should include columns listing your requirements, criteria and prices, along with the responses from each third-party logistics providers.

This document serves as a decision-making tool and is also beneficial to share with other departments or management.

Step 4: Narrowing Down the 3PL Contenders

It’s not uncommon to receive proposals from warehousing and distribution companies that are similar in services and comparatively priced. Depending on how many 3PLs were on your RFQ list, the goal is to narrow down the choices to the top five, three, or two companies.

Some ways to differentiate between your top choices are:

  • Soliciting feedback from other departments involved in some way in your company’s supply chain process.
  • Asking each of your top 3PL vendor choices to make a presentation to the management team.
  • Scheduling site visits to your top 3PL choices. These will allow you to view their operations, the technology they have in place and how well it will integrate into your company’s, the processes they use, their capacity, and the competencies of their staff.

With all these actions, keep in mind that you’re trying to determine which logistics provider is the right organizational fit for your company.

Step 5: Make the Final Decision

Conduct follow-up phone discussions with each 3PL provider to further evaluate how they would handle situations that may develop with your business, or outside influencers, for instance, rising gas prices, carrier work stoppage, etc.

Ask each logistics company in the final running for references and be sure to contact each reference on the list. Also consider gathering independent references, such as market standing and reputation, accomplishments, industry involvement, online reviews, etc.

Evaluate the information, do a final comparison, and choose the 3PL vendor that best meets your company’s needs.

We Welcome Your Business

Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services welcomes the opportunity to respond to your RFQ and to answer any further inquiries you may have.

We’re always pleased to host on-site visits so you can see our warehouse facilities in action and discuss how our logistics solutions and services can address your company’s needs and bring added value.

Feel free to contact us at any time to discuss your requirements. We look forward to serving your warehousing, distribution and other logistics needs.

 



How to Get Your Boss to Sign Off on Your 3PL Selection

You came to the conclusion that you need a third-party logistics (3PL) provider and selected the best one for your company’s needs. Now, you need executive approval in order to get things moving. But getting your boss to sign off on your proposal may not be that easy.

Try not to get discouraged. Instead, arm yourself with plenty of data and information that will make approving your proposal a no-brainer.

These guidelines will help you in presenting your case.

Link the Company’s Goals With Your Proposal

Company leadership has established a vision and runs the company based on that vision. Any new initiatives or changes in the way the company currently conducts business needs to demonstrate how it aligns with the vision and goals of the company.

The choice you made for a public warehouse needs to address your company’s strengths and weaknesses. Outline how the 3PL provider will meet the needs of the company and why you chose this vendor over others.

A good way to present your information is in a compare and contrast format. Show which 3PLs you compared, why you selected them, their strengths and weaknesses, the logistics services they provide, and their costs.

Address Concerns at the Start

Whether you’re proposing a 3PL to supplement your existing warehousing and distribution functions, or to replace your current logistics infrastructure, it will have a major impact on current daily operations.

The change could cause concerns for existing staff, resources, and protocols, so be ready to address them up-front and defend your stance. It’s helpful to show how the 3PL will free up more staff and resources to perform duties that are important to the company’s core activities, or how a 3PL will allow the company to operate more efficiently and cost-effectively.

Some other concerns you can expect to hear and need to answer are:

  • Is the third-party provider equipped with the latest warehousing equipment, software, and other essential technology? How often does it upgrade?
  • How easily can the 3PL scale to company growth?
  • What type of warehouse management system does the public warehouse facility use?
  • What evidence is there that the third-party logistics provider can handle high demand seasons?
  • How much staff does the 3PL employ and what type of employee training programs are used?
  • How responsive and flexible is the outsourced logistics supplier?

Show Bottom Line Results

No matter the size of the business, the executive level of any company has to keep an eye on the bottom line. In particular, the chief executive officer (CEO), chief financial officer (CFO), and chief operating officer (COO) are responsible for ensuring that their efforts are realizing a profitable bottom line for the company.

If you want to make a case for using a 3PL, you have to present a budget for the service and show the savings throughout the entire supply chain. You have to be specific in showing the return on investment in a dollar amount for the initial year and then project the savings over at least five years.

Remember, other departments are competing for dollars to implement their proposals, so you need to have a solid argument for why using a 3PL for warehousing, distribution, and logistics will save the company money and help in achieving its goals.

Document the total cost of using a 3PL versus not using one and remaining status quo. You’ll want to drill down these savings. As examples:

  • Show how storage space would be better utilized by outsourcing to the public warehouse.
  • Demonstrate how distribution costs would drop because the 3PL has negotiated lower rates with an established network of carriers in all modes of transportation.

Let Brendamour Help

Brendamour Warehousing, Distribution & Services is the 3PL choice of many companies, big and small, and of all industries.

If you need help convincing your boss that a 3PL like Brendamour is the way to go, simply get in touch with Brendamour Warehousing. Our leadership team can help you with your proposal by showing how our services can benefit your company.

We’ll be happy to show you and your executive team why so many businesses are benefiting with Brendamour as their 3PL!