Finding the best freight forwarding company for your business not only allows you to outsource your supply chain management and logistics needs to experts, but it also allows you to increase efficiency for both your company and your clients. Also known as third party logistics (3PL) providers, they offer a number of supply chain management solutions, such as warehousing, fulfillment, and distribution all under one roof. 3PL and supply chain management companies, like Mach 1 Global Services, Inc. offer a range of logistics services to help you maximize your company’s profitability. Here are 10 things to consider when choosing the best freight forwarding company for your business.
1. Does the freight forwarder meet your business needs?
The very first thing to do when selecting the best freight forwarder for your business is to consider what your specific needs are and find the best 3PL company to match it. Research the logistics service provider you are considering and make sure they have the services that your business needs. Logistics services like modes of transportation, the average volume of shipments, and if they offer other services such as fulfillment and warehousing are important details to consider when searching for a freight forwarder. Remember, the goal is to find a 3PL service provider that allows you to focus on the part of your business that you are an expert in and outsource the supply chain management task to a 3PL expert.
2. Does the freight forwarder have the right experience and credentials?
Once you identify a good logistics service provider that meets your needs, you want to make sure that they can truly deliver on their promise. Some things to consider: have they worked with your cargo type before? Have they imported and exported goods from the countries you work with? Are they financially stable? Are they properly bonded? Are they established with a long, successful history? As we will discuss later, stability is essential when entering into a long-term partnership with a 3PL service.
3. Do you like the freight forwarding company’s customer service?
Customer service will make or break your experience with your new 3PL service provider, so you want to make sure it is good before establishing a long-term partnership. If you have a question or a problem with one of your shipments you want to make sure that you receive the information and assistance you need quickly and effectively. Make sure they are responsive and knowledgeable before committing to their services.
4. Does the 3PL service use the latest technology?
Technology in the logistics industry is always advancing to increase efficiency, so it is important that your logistics service provider is committed to staying up-to-date on the latest advancements. You also want to make sure the 3PL technology integrates with your business system to provide seamless visibility. You can request a demo of their systems before committing to their services.
5. Can the freight forwarder customize its capabilities to meet your needs?
Customizing services and strategies to your business allows you to optimize your inventory and distribution to reduce costs. An experienced 3PL can help you analyze your business and help you strategize a plan to streamline your supply chain.
6. Is the forwarding company committed to continuous improvement?
The best freight forwarding company is one whose core-values include service excellence and quality management. The ability to continually improve processes to deliver the optimal service and results is essential for great partnership over a long period of time. Look for industry-recognized and award-winning freight forwarding companies. For instance, Mach 1 Global Services, Inc. has won numerous awards recognizing their leadership in the logistics industry over the past 30 years, such as winning the 2018 Arizona Corporate Excellence (ACE) award.
7. What is the freight forwarding company’s financial status?
When choosing a freight forwarding company to partner with it is paramount that you ensure they are financially stable. Your cargo could be delayed or held if your forwarder is having financial troubles or is in default. Ask if the freight forwarder is properly bonded. They must go through financial assessment before being bonded. Additionally, a forwarder that is financially stable is more likely to invest in facilities, technology, and human resources needed to continuously improve and provide excellent logistics services.
8. Do they offer a range of services?
Find a freight forwarder that offers a host of services. This allows you to access a wide range of services without establishing contracts with multiple companies. For instance, Mach 1 Global Services, Inc. offers freight shipping, door-to-door delivery, warehousing and distribution, supply chain solutions, multimodal transportation solutions, online booking, integrated logistics, and much more. By choosing a freight forwarding company with a wide range of offerings, you get logistics solutions and expertise with one company.
9. Can you build a rapport with multiple contacts within the freight forwarding company?
Get to know multiple points of contact within the logistics service provider and establish a rapport with them. This will help increase transparency and optimize your customer service experience. If your business will be using multiple services within the freight forwarding company, such as warehousing, fulfillment, and freight shipping, get to know key members in each department.
10. Does the forwarder have a network of locations and established industry relationships?
A good freight forwarding company will have multiple national and international offices and well-established relationships to fit your specific needs. Using a 3PL company with this type of vast network will allow your supply chain to be more efficient, more economical and more effective. For instance, Mach 1 Global Services, Inc. operates in 6 countries and has 18 locations throughout the United States. They have been in business for over 30 years and are well established in the logistics industry. Companies with this type of network can easily handle both national and international freight needs.
BONUS #11. Can you scale your business with the freight forwarding company?
This is one of the most important points to consider when choosing the best freight forwarding company for your business. As a business owner, your goal is to grow. You want to make sure that your freight forwarding partner can accommodate that growth. The ability of the freight forwarding company to scale operations as their client’s needs peak is a very important attribute to consider.
Reach out to Mach 1 Global Services, Inc. to see how their logistics services stack up against these 11 questions. Contact the experts at Mach 1 Global Services to discuss the next steps in planning your supply chain management solution. Call (800) 553-7774 or get a quote by clicking HERE.
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