How to Evaluate a 3PL's Warehousing Functionality


3PL companies outsource logistics services to companies with transport and warehousing resources. In the article below, you will learn how to examine a 3PL company's warehousing functionality. 

Type of Warehouses

What is the scale of your business operations? Companies that deal with perishable products may need a climate-controlled warehouse. Conversely, businesses in the import and export business may need bonded warehouses that store imported products before custom inspections.


The 3PL company's warehouses should be strategically located along your distribution route. This ensures customers and suppliers can easily access your products. Some 3PL companies will hire warehouses, while others have their own warehouses. One of your concerns should be the level of security at the warehouse. CCTV cameras, armed security guards, perimeter walls and restricted access systems are a guarantee that your goods are safe at the warehouse. Small businesses may use vehicles to pick up products at the warehouse. As such, if the warehouse is located outside town, it should have an excellent access road.


What is the size of the warehouse? Large businesses may have a large volume of goods. As such, they will need massive warehouses. On the other hand, small companies do not need a lot of space. Further, they may not require any space at all during low seasons. It is, therefore, crucial to work with a flexible 3PL company that understands your supply and demand patterns.  

Incorporation of Technology

Warehouse management systems are software programs that manage warehouse inventory and make order picking easier. The systems minimise errors and ensure warehouse managers and clients have real-time information regarding the amount of goods at the warehouse and the various categories. Critically evaluate the efficiency of the warehouse management software used by the 3PL company. Avoid systems that are known for causing downtime and accounting errors.

Financial Strength

The financial strength of the 3PL company can significantly influence the efficiency of warehouse operations. For instance, companies under receivership or those making losses may lose the trust of warehousing companies since they may be unable to repay debts. 

The warehouse should have qualified and experienced staff. The company should also have modern equipment such as forklifts to lift and transport items at the facility. Preferably, work with a warehouse that receives and distributes goods 24/7.

Evaluating a 3PL company's warehouse functionality is now easy with the above tips. Choose a company with the right type of warehouse, strategically located facilities and sufficient space. Furthermore, the company should be financially well off and should incorporate warehouse management software. Learn more about 3PL warehousing by contacting various companies.


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