scaled blogimage1A supply chain is a network, which strategically manages the flow of material, money, and information. Thus, to attain a consumer-centric, innovative, and efficient supply chain, collaboration amongst all companies involved is required. In the past, many functions were handled internally and a 3PL was used for their traditional services like freight forwarding, transportation or warehouse management.

However, the rapid pace of innovation within logistics and supply chain and the opportunities for improvement have pushed 3PL providers to evolve from providing simple logistics services to more comprehensive 3PL services. In today’s economic market, 3PL companies have redefined their role based on the strategic coordination of their customers’ supply chain activities and the services they provide have become key ingredients in a successful supply chain. 3PLs are delivering more value by becoming a key partner to their customers and contributing to their competitive advantage.

Integrated logistics relationship

Smart businesses understand a healthy relationship between different 3PL partners is what that keeps a supply chain effectively integrated. An integrated logistics relationship supplies resources and assets greater than any one single partner in the supply chain can provide. 3PL collaboration plays a crucial role in interacting with other supply chain participants so they can work to solve problems together, planning processes more efficiently and continuously improving. By engaging in integrated logistics relationships with suppliers (including supplier management), manufacturers, and retailers, 3PL companies in Brisbane and Sydney are able to communicate on a regular basis to make rational inventory management and distribution plans and solve problems together for the benefit of the customer. Leading 3PLs are likely to use a collaborative approach to share and receive information that will improve the overall network of a supply chain.

Logistics flexibility

A successful supply chain is positively impacted by a professional 3PL provider that is flexible and can assist with fluctuations in business. From seasonal volume instability to tight deadlines, a 3PL is likely to go beyond the logistics and supply chain operations. A proactive, customer-focused 3PL provider will have a deep understanding of their customers’ business and be able to assist with streamlining business processes and make them more efficient and effective.

Build a demand-driven network

Poor synchronisation with partners can lead to an underperforming supply chain that exhibits longer lead times, higher freight forwarding and transportation costs and lost sales. An expert 3PL provider is likely to assist your business in achieving greater supply chain resilience by building a demand-driven value chain that serves the consumer by modelling partners and logistics constraints from upstream to downstream of a supply chain. Moreover, 3PL consulting services can also assist you to determine where your supply chain can be differentiated to better suit the requirements of your business.

Innovation and creativity

Smart businesses know 3PL providers have built a sustained market presence based on their creativity, ingenuity and their ability to deliver innovative supply chain solutions. Innovative solutions are likely to include cutting edge technology, such as an integrated Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) and Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) solutions, both of which work to deliver fast, accurate data, and bring down the number of IT personnel needed within the customer’s business. Another way 3PLs can add value is by reviewing and possible reconfiguring their customer’s delivery, distribution and reverse logistics. Collaborating with your 3PL provider for innovative and creative solutions can assist to develop more resilient and efficient processes, thus making your businesses both swift and effective.

Scatter your financial risks

Setting up of warehouses for physical distribution or the networks for information and other similar logistical assets are all business decisions which, by necessity, require a large capital investment and bear financial risk. In comparison, choosing the services and networks of an established 3PL and integrating your supply chain can reduce your business risk and reduce the investment required. Leading 3PLs spread out risk by outsourcing to subcontractors for some of their service areas. Furthermore, expert 3PL providers are likely to be able to deliver a cost advantage through sharing resources, volume freight forwarding discounts and increased shipment visibility.

By collaborating and working together, 3PLs can drive more value into their customers’ supply chains. 3PLs can ensure improvement, innovation, and visibility for business by effective collaboration. 3PL providers are increasing their role in working with their customers and many businesses are able to realise more supply chain value by working with 3PL providers that understand their business, collaborate with them and the other 3PL providers involved within the customers’ supply chain.

For more than a century, BCR has continued to help small, medium and large businesses achieve an optimum logistics solution with warehousing and transportation, including air freight and sea freight services to and from the major ports including Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Fremantle (Perth).