Establishing a 3PL Partnership is not just about short-term savings. It is also about long-term and sustainable gains and growth. An international 3PL partnership is not just about the initial bid but the strategic business relationship that can be established. Below are a few key things that will allow for a strong international (or domestic) 3PL partnership:
It is crucial for shippers to be open and honest when starting the process of partnering with a 3PL. Be upfront about your business’ shortcomings and where you have concerns. Otherwise, bids may be inaccurate, and you may have difficulty finding a logistics provider who can truly meet your needs.
Honesty sets the stage for open communication and an environment where ideas can flow freely. 3PLs are looking to provide you with new ideas and logistics solutions based on your business’ needs. 3PLs work to become an extension of your company by striving to understand where you excel and where you can improve. Open communication and honesty allows for this advantage in a 3PL partnership
Along this similar theme, it is important that you are clear about your expectations and goals. What do you wish to gain from this international 3PL partnership? What are some of the long-term goals of your company and how can this logistics provider help you achieve those goals? How can this 3PL fit into your current logistics process?
The initial bid from a 3PL is an important factor, but… when you ask all of these questions, you are able to look past the initial 3PL bid to a process that could save you a large amount of money through more advanced avenues. And while all of these things are important strategies for a shipper to implement, those shippers should be looking for similar qualities in their 3PL provider – honesty, willingness to communicate, and ability to give you clear and accurate information regarding their capabilities and how those match your expectations.