Why Mid-Tier 3PLs Are Still So Great

Over the last few decades, larger companies have acquired a vast number of independent third-party logistics (3PL) providers. To some extent, this makes sense. As supply chains have become increasingly global, larger 3PL companies can presumably offer more comprehensive services. While this approach looks smart from one perspective, it has become clear that many organizations can get better services from mid-tier 3PLs. This is especially true when it comes to shippers that serve niche markets.

If you're uncertain whether a Tier-II 3PL is the best option for your organization, consider how these benefits would help you find greater success.

Mid-Tier 3PLs Are More Flexible

Tier-I 3PLs are extremely large organizations with connections all over the world. That's an advantage in some ways. If you want a 3PL that's able to adapt quickly, though, you will want to choose a smaller option.

Tier-II 3PLs can respond nimbly to changes in your business plan and supply chain. Since they usually maintain close relationships with their partners, it's relatively easy to pick up the phone and make adjustments to match your needs more effectively.

Larger 3PLs, however, are stuck with concrete business relationships that don't let them change course quickly. That can become a serious problem when you discover a supply chain disruption that might prevent items from reaching store shelves on time.

Mid-Tier 3PLs Can Specialize More Effectively

The smaller size of 3PLs also means their ability to specialize makes both them and you more productive. They're usually happy to create customized services that match your specific needs. Tier-I 3PLs, however, have to go through a long bureaucratic process to make changes.

You have probably had similar experiences in your personal life. When you go to a large department store, your only options are what you find on the sales floor. When you go to a smaller store, though, the proprietors are more willing to place special orders or make changes to their existing policies. After all, small business owners know that every customer counts. Larger companies can always count on a new customer walking in the door within a few minutes. That difference affects how the businesses treat customers.

In your personal life, custom services and products are mere conveniences. In your business life, specialization is often the difference between success and failure.

Mid-Tier 3PLs Can Conform to Your Organization's Culture

If you manage a small or medium-sized business, then working with a large 3PL probably isn't the best way to maintain your organization's culture. Large 3PLs have a way of establishing, rather than following, directives. By choosing a tier-II 3PL, you get the opportunity to work closely with professionals who understand and respect the features that make your company different from your competitors. If you value your current culture, it makes sense to choose a service provider that will conform to it instead of trying to make changes.

Are you interested in learning more about why mid-tier 3PLs are so great? Fill out this consultation request form to speak with professionals from The Apparel Logistics Group. They can provide information about the specific features that will benefit your organization.

Posted: 3/3/2016 12:14:10 PM by Global Administrator | with 0 comments

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