There’s no way to overstate how important it is for your business to have a capable, dependable third-party logistics service provider. With the capacity and capabilities these partners can offer, you can stop worrying about how your products will get to your customers and instead focus your attention on growing as a company.
When compared to handling fulfillment and shipping internally, a good 3PL partner provides scalability, up-to-date technological solutions, and overall lower costs. However, that’s only if you have a vendor capable of meeting all your needs. Over time, you may find that your provider is no longer aligned with your interests, costing you more than you want or expect.
Here are five warning signs that it may be time to find a new 3PL service provider.
1. Lack of Reporting
Having the most up-to-date information about your inventory and orders is critical if you want to make timely adjustments to your supply chain. That’s why you need a 3PL partner that can give regular reports and be open to talking about any improvements that need to be made. If you’re having a difficult time pinning down anyone from your provider to get those details, it should be considered a major red flag.
2. Out-of-Control Costs
Although it’s true that you get what you pay for, you shouldn’t have to suffer sudden, ballooning price structures from your 3PL company. If you’re being hit with exorbitant increases in what you’re paying, it could be more than just the rising cost of doing business. Take the time to shop and make sure you have a handle on what’s fair and reasonable for the services you need. Don’t be afraid to jump ship if you find a provider that can do the same for less.
3. Warehousing Failures
Another warning sign you shouldn’t ignore is persistent problems with securing space for your inventory or damaged products. These are signs that the vendor’s warehouse capacity and capabilities are not sufficient for your needs. The last thing you want is to find out your customers are dissatisfied for reasons that are no fault of your own. Make sure the company you choose has the available storage and quality control protocols in place to fulfill your orders smoothly — without any risk of broken items or smashed packaging.
4. Frequent Errors
Everyone makes mistakes from time to time, but a 3PL company that consistently drops the ball is almost worse than not having one. After all, it’s your name on the products, not the logistics company’s. You shouldn’t have to deal with the frustration of orders being filled incorrectly or packages that miss their delivery targets on a regular basis.
5. Relying on Old Methods or Technology
It is virtually impossible for any company to keep up with the speed of commerce today without the latest technology. That’s why, if your 3PL partner still relies on paper invoices or warehouse management software that hasn’t been updated in years, you should reconsider your relationship.
Work With the Leaders in 3PL
With a logistics network that handles millions of small parcels as well as huge volumes of FTL/LTL/LCL shipments, WSI is the name countless companies trust when they want to optimize their shipping and logistics. Our international 3PL capabilities are bolstered by our customizable services and more than 14 million square feet of operational facility space throughout the country.
If you’re not happy with the service you’re currently getting from your provider, start working with a 3PL that is completely equipped to handle all your needs so you can better serve your customers. To learn more about everything we can do for you, get in touch today.