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Consumer Goods Logistics Blog


Managing 3PL Relationships: Look for Intangible Benefits

Posted by Alex Stark on September 30, 2020

The choice and effectiveness of your 3PL relationships have an enormous impact on your company’s profitability and its reputation with your customers. We find that the factors that lead shippers to seek out 3PLs in the first place – things like freight capacity, experience in an industry, expertise with a particular service – often are not the reasons that companies choose and stay with a 3PL provider. It’s more the intangible benefits, beyond service and cost, that make the biggest impression.

In our last article, we looked at what shippers could do to maximize logistics outsourcing benefits. In this article, we’ll focus on the intangible benefits that you should look for to ensure positive, long-term 3PL relationships. Consider asking yourself the following questions in your 3PL evaluation process.

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Topics: Supply Chain Challenges, 3PL Outsourcing

Maximizing Logistics Outsourcing Benefits: What Shippers Can Do

Posted by Alex Stark on September 28, 2020

A good third-party logistics partner (3PL) can add value far beyond the cost of the service. But the extent of that value is significantly influenced by the actions of the outsourcing company and how it manages the relationship.

This article offers 5 things shippers can do to maximize the benefits of logistics outsourcing.

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Topics: 3PL Outsourcing

What to Look for in Food Logistics Companies

Posted by Alex Stark on August 27, 2020

If you manage distribution for a food manufacturer, distributor or retailer, you’re concerned not only with shipping accurate, on-time orders, but also with cold chain management, regulatory compliance, food safety, and other specialized logistics challenges. Those concerns are magnified if you outsource any portion of your operations to outside food logistics companies, since you need to closely monitor these operations.

Any company can claim food logistics expertise, but what should you look for in order to distinguish claims from reality? Here are 7 tips to consider.

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Topics: 3PL Outsourcing, Food and Beverage Logistics

Streamline Packaging by Integrating with Product Distribution

Posted by Alex Stark on August 12, 2020

Specific consumer products all look pretty much the same as they roll off the manufacturing line.

But to satisfy the various ways retailers want to sell products and consumers want to receive them, these products are bundled, wrapped, sealed, tied and packed into dozens of different configurations for final sale.

This is called secondary packaging and it’s very expensive for manufacturers to constantly adapt their production lines to create this multitude of packaging configurations. So, they lean on outside resources to streamline packaging.

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Topics: Supply Chain Challenges, 3PL Outsourcing, Reduce logistics costs

It’s Valentine’s Day: Are You Still in Love with Your 3PL?

Posted by Alex Stark on February 13, 2020

Marriages and logistics partnerships all start with an assumption of a happy ending. But it doesn’t always work out that way – in either case.

Why do 3PL outsourcing relationships fail? A lot of the top reasons parallel what we hear in divorce courts. If any of the following reasons feel familiar to you, it might be time to ask yourself, “Are we with the right 3PL partner?”

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Topics: 3PL Outsourcing

Is Your 3PL in the News? What for?

Posted by Alex Stark on January 30, 2020

Third party logistics companies (3PLs) are often in the news these days – but for reasons quite different than they were 10 years ago. 

This thought occurred to me while I was skimming recent news items in some of the top logistics industry trade publications. I decided to start counting and classifying the types of stories about specific 3PLs. Close to 75% were related to either acquisitions, financial performance, lawsuits or problems with labor contracts. The remaining 25% or so were about value delivered for customers or service expansion.

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Topics: 3PL Outsourcing, KANE Company

Flexibility AND Scalability: A Scarce Combination Among 3PLs

Posted by Alex Stark on October 17, 2019

Check out the marketing claims of many third-party logistics providers (3PLs) and you’ll see the words “flexible” and “scalable” used regularly, and often together.  The fact is, most are good at one or the other, but not both.

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Topics: 3PL Outsourcing

Happy CX Day

Posted by Alex Stark on October 10, 2019

What did you do to celebrate CX Day earlier this month?

Wait…what?! You’ve never heard of it?

CX, of course, is short for Customer Experience. CX Day celebrates those customers. You know, the people who keep the lights on. The day itself moves around a bit, making it hard to get traction for this particular celebration.

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Topics: Supply Chain Challenges, 3PL Outsourcing

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