4 Questions to Ask a Potential 3PL Partner

11/3/2019

When you’re considering outsourcing your supply chain management a third-party logistics (3PL) provider, it’s important to identify a reputable company that’s a good fit for your needs. But when it comes to choosing a partner, how do you know which will be the best fit? Ask these questions before making a decision:

 

1. How long have you been in business?

An experienced company typically will be able to provide more solutions than a start-up.  Businesses that have been around for several decades will have proven value propositions, reliable reputations, and established relationships in the industry.

 

2. What services do you offer?

Look for a partner that can offer a variety of services to meet your supply chain requirements. Ask firms to provide a program that’s not only individualized to your needs but one that can help increase your warehousing and logistics efficiencies. Services can include:

  • Testing and inspection
  • Custom picking and packing
  • Bagging; form, fill, and seal (FFS) packaging
  • Package options: blister, skin, shrink wrap, clamshell, custom designs
  • Kitting, industrial assembly, subassembly
  • Retail and pallet displays, retail-ready store merchandising
  • Labeling, re-stickering, custom labels
  • Freight management, cross-dock shipping
  • Custom program fulfillment
  • Warehouse management system

 

3. What is your error rate?

Learn how the potential partners will handle mistakes, should they occur. The benchmark accuracy rate at MYA Logistics is 99.7 percent. 

 

4. Can you provide client references?

Client references are crucial: They prove that your potential partner knows what it’s doing and can successfully act as an extension of your business. When speaking with references, ask questions such as:

  • Were you satisfied with the implementation process?
  • What procedures or processes have they put in place to help increase your program’s efficiency?
  • What could the company do better?

 

As you’re preparing your questions, be ready to answer the questions a logistics company should ask you—such as the typical size of your inventory, how quickly your products will turn over, and if your business is seasonal. To view the type of information you’ll need to gather, review this comprehensive inquiry list from MYA Logistics.