Benefits of Partnering With 3PL Freight Transportation CompaniesWritten by Neal Willis
With tight capacity, newly developing technology and eCommerce at the forefront of supply chain topics, third-party freight transportation companies and third-party logistics providers (3PLs) are becoming just as valuable as a strategic partner to carriers as they are to shippers.
Carriers are finding that in many instances they can take advantage of technology offering(s) provided by third-party freight transportation companies, and many carriers are now actively initiating and engaging in dialogue with these companies for many of the same reasons and ways that only shippers have done in the past.
Historically speaking, Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) freight carriers have been primarily concerned with the transporting of freight. Their core business has been the movement of shipments from one place to another with the challenge of making sure freight is delivered in a timely fashion without damage. However, modern consumers have presented more challenging demands and require more than simply having their freight delivered to them damage-free in a reasonable amount of time.
The modern consumer expects to dictate exactly when and how their shipments arrive, and they want to be able to see its movement all the way through the supply chain, from order entry to carrier pickup and delivery.
Third-party freight transportation companies and/or 3PLs have generally specialized in providing certain distinctive services to shippers. While helping shippers lower and gain control over freight costs with pricing and administrative efficiencies, many third-party freight transportation companies have also historically leveraged their technology to shippers and given them tools and software solutions that complement the shipper’s capabilities and service offerings to their customers.
Nowadays, carriers are also finding that their service offerings can be complemented in much the same manner as those of retailers and shippers, through strategic partnerships with third party-freight transportation companies.
The technological tools offered by third-party freight transportation companies, along with their administrative advantages, are enabling the collaboration of shippers and carriers that’s necessary to meet consumer demands of flexible delivery options and complete supply chain visibility. Third-party freight transportation companies are assisting with and driving better decision-making for both shippers and carriers with an abundant amount of data, all while simultaneously improving administrative efficiencies for everyone involved.
Rather than trying to keep pace with current technology, partnering with third-party freight transportation companies can afford shippers and carriers more time to focus their attention on what they do best. New opportunities for growth, process efficiencies and more accurate data for better decision making are all tangible benefits of working with third-party freight transportation companies, and the added value these strategic partnerships offer both shippers and carriers is undeniable.