Third Party Logistics (3PL)
An addition to the shipping community, categorized as organizations that consume transportation and distribution services, the logistics market place is dominated by transportation providers, storage providers and Third Party Logistics Providers.
A growing trend for organizations focused on managing their supply chains is to outsource part or all of the logistics functions to Third Party Logistics Providers – 3PLs. By definition, these are independent companies that design, implement and/or manage a client’s supply chain logistics needs. The key differentiating factor between a 3PL and a transportation provider is that a 3PL provider’s primary value-add is based on information and knowledge, versus providing an undifferentiated service at the lowest costs. Capitalizing on this strategy, it is appropriate for organizations to link marketing strategies, which, in common with the 3PL approach, focused on value-added services versus non-differentiated network and data translation services, which are price sensitive.