Use of 3PLs Key to Success


November 28, 2011
KEYWORDS 3PL / FTA / shippers
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The 16th Annual Third-Party Logistics (3PL) Studyreveals that 64 percent of shippers worldwide are increasing their use of 3PL services. At the same time, the report indicates an average of 42 percent of total logistics expenditures being spent on outsourcing, the same as last year’s study. However, 24 percent of shipper respondents reported some return to insourcing 3PL services, and 58 percent report they are reducing or consolidating the number of 3PLs they use.

The report shows relationships between shippers and 3PLs continue to flourish, with 94 percent of 3PLs and 88 percent of shippers stating communication, flexibility, and openness are key contributors to their successful relationships. However, just 68 percent of shippers judge their 3PLs as sufficiently agile and flexible, down from 72 percent last year, suggesting this is an area where 3PLs can make significant further contributions to supply chain success.

 A substantial 80 percent of shippers in the survey conduct business with or within an emerging market, with the majority (52 percent) doing so from a mature market.

The 3PL capabilities shippers most value when entering emerging markets are expertise, especially in regards to the latest global trade regulations, as well as the management and optimization of shipment routing based on free trade agreement (FTA) knowledge. The majority of shippers in mature (65 percent) and emerging markets (73 percent) recognize 3PLs’ knowledge of FTAs as very important. 

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