How a Lack of Efficient Technology Can Harm 3PL Growth

Third-party logistics (3PL) providers have seen high levels of demand in recent years, in large part due to the spike in e-commerce since the start of the pandemic. Last spring, Forbes published an article covering the opportunities and challenges 3PL companies face as the world of online purchasing and delivery continues its surge.

ServiceCentral provides 3PL, OEM, and RMA software for relationship management, point of purchase, and many other administrative needs. We’ve taken the time to highlight the primary points of this article to show just how vital up-to-date technology is for 3PL companies.

Just How Much Money Did E-Commerce Companies Generate in 2020?

According to Statista, revenue from United States e-commerce added up to about 430 billion dollars in 2020. In the Forbes article, John Hayes, Balyo USA Sales Director and the writer of the article, discusses the opportunities for business development 3PLs have if they hope to adapt to the recent growth. One of the points he addresses is that of warehouse space expansion.

What Now?

With this growth in revenue, it may be tempting for 3PLs to invest in additional warehouse space. But, as Hayes points out, the 3PL benefit presented to manufacturers (as a non-corporate, regional center) may be lost if there isn’t enough attention to providing OEMs with efficiency and productivity.

In other words, development into more adaptable environments is for naught if 3PL companies don’t have the hardware and software to optimize efficiency for their stakeholders.

To use Hayes’s words directly:

So where does that leave the 3PL and other companies whose world’s have drastically changed in the last two years?

The Challenge: Staying Afloat, The Digital Solution: Better 3PL Software

While we’re no experts in commercial real estate and expanding warehouse space, we do know a thing or two about seeking solutions on the digital landscape. To improve overall provider efficiency, 3PL companies will want to take stock of the following:

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) systems
  • Internal workflows
  • RMA management processes
  • Inventory management
  • Insurance and warranty claims processes

Think of your software and internal administration as the left and right sides of the brain of your operations. You can invest in all the space in the world to house your company, but there’s not much-added space can do to help you adapt digitally to 2022. 

As you plot out the blueprint of your third-party services going forward, consider first how smoothly your internal—and customer-facing, if you face customers—processes are running before you finalize anything. That includes all business development measures you make as you attempt to adapt.

Service Network – Helping You Manage Your Reverse Logistics Internally and Externally

Learn how ServiceCentral products like ServiceManager and ServiceNetwork can help your company adapt to today’s reverse logistics challenges. We provide software for various businesses across the reverse supply chain, including electronics industries and small-to-mid-sized repair shops.

Examples of our software solutions include those related to:

  • Product management
  • Consumer interfaces
  • Point of sale
  • Ticket fulfillment and visibility
  • Refurbishment
  • Various other B2B and B2C needs

Check out our product page for more information on Service Central benefits. You can also get started with a sales inquiry by reaching out online.