5 Tips for Getting the Most from Your 3PL Partnership

You depend on your third-party logistics (3PL) partner to help you get your products to their ultimate destinations in a timely fashion. However, just like not all 3PL service providers are the same, neither are business relationships with 3PL partners. You can have a mediocre partnership, or you can have one that thrives. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your 3PL partnership.

Be Clear About Your Needs

At the core of every successful relationship is communication. Don’t leave your 3PL provider wondering exactly what it is you want. Let your partner know your business objectives and how you plan to achieve them. This will help you work together smoothly, and it will give your 3PL provider an opportunity to give you specific suggestions on how to improve overall logistics for your business.

Building a trusting relationship is often challenging, but by applying sound communication principles, you can make it work.

Evaluate Performance

How is your partnership working? Regularly hold meetings to discuss the key performance indicators (KPIs) you set out when you first started to work with your 3PL provider. Give forthright feedback and talk about your expectations going forward.


If you find that something is sorely lacking in your partnership, it may be that your 3PL partner does not have adequate expertise in your industry. Every sector of business has unique needs, and logistics companies should understand those needs. For example, The Apparel Logistics Group knows how to expertly move merchandise in the fashion industry, and a free consultation could be the start of a profitable relationship if your business focuses on clothing.

Adjust Your Services

Don’t let your 3PL partnership grow stale. As your business changes and evolves, so do its logistics needs. Talk to your 3PL partner about what their company can do to help yours as you move forward in the business world. A service that you didn’t need last year may prove profitable for you this year.

Keep Reasonable Expectations

3PL companies can pull off amazing feats, knocking out deadlines and making sure that your products arrive on time and in good shape. However, that doesn’t mean they have super powers, and you shouldn’t treat them like they do. If you constantly push your 3PL partner and don’t respect their limitations, it could damage your relationship and ultimately build an unbreakable barrier between you and them.

Be Honest

All businesses have shortcomings, and you shouldn’t try to hide those shortcomings from your partners. For example, if you think that a bid may be inaccurate or you foresee other problems, put those facts into the open. You don’t want to bombard your partner with unpleasant surprises after you start working together. Hopefully, your 3PL partner will reciprocate with equal honesty so you can work together to resolve those issues.

Moving your products, meeting deadlines, and making sales are all key elements of a successful apparel business. Strengthen your relationship with your apparel 3PL partner so your merchandise can make the trip from factory to consumers’ homes in a timely, cost-effective manner.

Posted: 4/28/2015 11:39:07 AM by Global Administrator | with 0 comments

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