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Yesterday we spoke about the first 5 predictions of services and elements we will see as commonplace coming from third party logistics providers in the year 2020. We covered important topics such as more collaboration between shippers and third party logistics, the rise of mobile technology, smarter and more dedicated technology teams within 3pLs , the harnessing of big data and information sharing, and the rise of the global economy and how third party logistics providers will deal with the new global requirements.

In today’s post we will round out our ten predictions for the future of third party logistics by focusing more on operational aspects as opposed to big swath trends. Third party logistics providers will improve these operations within their business in order to better serve their customers, as the number on goal of a 3PL should focus on the outcomes and goals of their customers, typically revolving around mitigating risk, reducing errors, decreasing resources as the shipper grows, and ultimately decreasing overall costs within the logistics departments of companies. Feel free to add your own comments below on what you think you will see by the year 2020 coming from third party logistics providers.

Final 10 Predictions for the Future of Third Party Logistics Providers

6. Increased visibility  for Manufacturers and Shippers into the Supply Chain

Methods such as continuous replenishment and inventory management will be commonplace. A more holistic approach to the entire supply chain will be typical from third party logistics providers, with more emphasis given to external visibility. Collaboration with manufactures will assist with visibility of production schedules with supplier and ensure raw material availability, but also with sales channels so that demand is connected with availability.

7. Workflow automation Technology will Continue to Increase

third party logistics providersInformation previously generated by people will increasingly be automated and system-generated, and data will flow out of increasingly sophisticated stock sensors. Inventory will count itself, and containers will be able to detect their own contents. GPS technology will allow pallets to report in if they end up in the wrong location allowing delivery errors to be put right while still in transit.

8. Diversification of Third Party Logistics Providers Services

Outsourcing to third party logistics providers has seen fierce rivalry between businesses and only those which are able to add value to the services they offer, with differentiators, will survive. Those who make it will have morphed from commodity distribution services to more complex organisations offering online ordering, returns processing, product assembly and kitting, documentation and inventory management. Integrating customers with a broader range of solutions will become a way for third party logistics providers to form longer lasting partnerships and become more profitable in the future.

9. Better Management Offered to 3PL Customers

While commercial success will largely depend on staff, an all-encompassing transportation management system will encourage better employee management through super user access and management within the system. Staff will be more accurately measured against KPIs from time per task, which carriers they chose, and how efficient are they are making sure invoices are accurate and freight claims management are handled.

10. Sustainability for the Environment

As businesses identify new ways of working to decrease inefficiencies, sustainability will be key. This will impact on the buildings and equipment used or procured by the third party logistics providers, which will look to green-friendly technology to deliver efficiency savings in areas such as energy consumption and transport costs. Expect companies, even direct competitors, to share transport in order to reduce overheads, including fuel and maintenance costs.

In Conclusion

Technology will continue to be vital to the sector, mobile devices and business intelligence solutions playing a big part in streamlining the industry. Those firms that are the most agile and are quicker to invest in new technologies and adopting smarter ways of working, will be the 3PL companies leading the field in 2020.

What predictions do you see coming to fruition as services or elements of third party logistics providers by 20202? Let us know in the comments below!

This post was sourced from the Advanced Business Solutions blog originally found here.