Choosing a 3PL to regularly ship with requires more than just great rates and great service. It is now more important than ever to work with a 3PL that puts the shipper’s needs first. Our team has worked with countless shippers and has found that these 4 points are the foundation of a successful, long-lasting shipper-3PL relationship.
1. Choose a 3PL that is honest and trustworthy.
Every business relationship should be built on a foundation of trust and communication – especially the shipper-3PL relationship. An honest 3PL will keep their shipper updated on their loads and communicate when any issues arise. It’s inevitable that some carriers will cancel last minute and trucks will break down, traffic will cause slowdowns, and other uncontrollable situations will occur. But a trustworthy 3PL will immediately let the shipper know about the situation, and give them more options for getting that load covered.
2. Make sure that timeliness is a priority.
Number two on our checklist is timeliness, and it is so important when trusting a 3PL with your freight. Being on time consistently starts when a 3PL has an excellent carrier vetting process in place. By only working with the most reliable, vetted carriers, a 3PL will set themselves up to deliver the most timely service possible.
Here at Route, we have a very strict on-boarding process and Compliance Managers that facilitate that process for every carrier we work with. These are the 6 minimum requirements for carriers to start the vetting process:
3. Evaluate their level of professionalism.
Professionalism is about more than just getting freight picked up and delivered. Does your 3PL team help you to feel confident in their service and taken care of throughout the shipping process? Is communicating with them quick and easy? These are great questions to ask that help determine if your 3PL is at the level of professionalism that works for you.
4. Ensure that the 3PL will supply ALL documentation requested.
The last item in our checklist is not only an indicator of service quality, but also of trustworthiness. Your 3PL should be able to supply any and all documentation when requested. Whether that be the BOL or POD, shippers should be given easy access to all of the documents for their loads.
When working with Route, shippers can conveniently view all shipments, PODs, and reporting 24/7 in the Route Customer Portal. Our account managers are also available to email any documents directly.
To learn more about how Route can help make your shipping experience easier, you can request a quote here.