The leaders in the 3PL market are those who are embracing technology, according to Peter Ward, CEO of UKWA.
Speaking at the eDelivery Expo (EDX) earlier this month, Ward said: “This is now about best use of technology. It’s about finding those partners that understand it and understand about managing the whole inventory challenge on a global basis,” he said.
He said the speed and flexibility offered by cloud-based systems was also important. “The leaders are the guys embracing cloud-based technologies – particularly in regards to warehouse management systems,” he said. “The systems have got to be portable and the whole offer and solution has got to be affordable so the leaders are the guys that get that,” he said.
However, he warned retailers not to underestimate the challenge of today’s supply chains. “It’s about moving the whole supply chain from the linear process we understood to this global ecosystem driven by the consumer. There isn’t a single supply chain anymore and for anyone in the ecommerce space I don’t see how they can manage the business on a global level without the support of the 3PL market,” he said.
“Logistics is the new retail and this industry is changing on an almost daily basis to keep up with customer expectations,” he said.
But getting the right supplier was vital he said. “It’s about finding the right fit for your business and finding the core competency. What is it in the business that you need to get nailed down?” he asked.
Image credit: EDX