Working with a third-party logistics (3PL) or fourth-party logistics (4PL) provider can feel like a major leap, and shippers naturally have a lot of questions before they make it. Will this impact quality? Can an external provider possibly understand our business as intimately as our internal team does? And will outsourcing require a lot of hand-holding—or a total loss of control?
Relinquishing control can be hard to do, especially when it comes to something as critical as your logistics operations. With customer satisfaction and repeat business hinging on the speed and effectiveness of the supply chain, shippers often feel compelled to keep logistics management in-house, where they can have eyes on everything.
In doing so, however, they often hold their business back from unlocking the efficiency and cost savings that outsourced logistics management can bring. And those aren’t the only benefits of letting go.
Navigating blind spots
Most companies have at least one blind spot in their logistics operations. But when you’re too close to your own operations, sometimes you can’t see the forest for all the trees.
An outsourced provider can come in with a fresh pair of eyes and a perspective shaped by a diversity of experience. Since established providers have worked with dozens (or even hundreds) of other companies in the past, they can share insights and recommendations based on what’s worked for other shippers. This can also make it easier for them to identify your blind spots and spot problems on the horizon. After all, they’ve almost certainly seen it before.
What’s more, providers that offer built-in business intelligence can empower shippers to unlock more insights from their data—helping them identify opportunities for greater efficiencies and savings.
Relieving administrative burdens
Your team is great at what they do. But if they’re saddled with administrative tasks, they may not have time to focus on what they’re best at, like building strong supplier relationships.
An outsourced logistics provider can take over necessary but potentially time-consuming tasks like managing your transportation management system (TMS), communicating with carriers, and handling the freight claims process. Some providers, like CTSI-Global, can even handle your operations from end to end, freeing up your staff to focus all their energies and talents on more strategic tasks, rather than the day-to-day running of things.
Bridging the gaps
Working with an outsourced logistics provider also makes it easier to fill gaps in your operations and manage fluctuations without hiring additional staff.
This is especially useful during periods when hiring may be out of the question. An outsourced provider can augment and support a company’s team, taking over any core tasks that the shipper doesn’t have the time or capabilities to handle in-house.
Letting go of control doesn’t mean losing it
Working with an outsourced logistics provider doesn’t mean you have to lose control. By giving you access to better technology, top providers can actually give you deeper insights into your business—and free you up to focus on the big picture.
Discover the true power of letting go. Contact us today.