5 Things to Consider When Outsourcing Your Fulfillment

Everything is going great with your e-commerce business. Orders are coming in, customers are leaving five-star reviews, and you were recently able to find another manufacturing partner at a lower cost. But fulfillment is still an issue. You are able to keep up with demand using the small office and commercial space you lease, but you keep asking yourself: what happens when I grow bigger? How will I handle more orders? This, of course, is a good problem to have. 

Before you become overwhelmed and unable to fulfill and ship orders, you should take the time to do your homework and evaluate a business partner. Start meeting and discussing options with third-party logistics (3PL) providers, which provide outsourcing services for all or part of your warehousing, distribution and fulfillment needs. 

Below are several considerations when evaluating a 3PL provider. These can be your starting off point.

WAREHOUSE AND FACILITIES

The most common type of 3PL provider receives your products from the manufacturer, stores them and then ships them to your customers on your behalf. When choosing a 3PL, you want to know that they have the capacity to add your products to their existing operations. Visit the facility and see how much space is being utilized, and ask how many and what type of e-commerce companies the provider currently works with.

If you have reason to suspect that space might be an issue, ask whether the 3PL has relationships with other 3PLs or a larger warehouse network. The more warehouses in the network, not only will your products be closer to your customers but you can also have peace of mind knowing that there will be storage for the times when you experience a sales spike.

ASSEMBLY AND PACKAGING

As another consideration with the warehouse space, there should be ample space for the assembly of your products (if needed) and packaging. Remember that customer experience includes the box and packing materials. Ask about—and negotiate—packaging solutions with the 3PL to keep your costs down while still maintaining your brand.

TRANSPORTATION

Do you also sell in bulk, or to a retail chain? If so, you may wish to consider a 3PL that operates its own transportation network for even faster movement of goods. The 3PLs that have a transportation component might move inventory between your manufacturer and the 3PL’s warehouses, or even between you and your wholesale customers. 

SHIPPING AND RECEIVING

One of the biggest challenges for most e-commerce businesses is managing the cost of shipping. You may have negotiated a discount to ship your products, but a large 3PL may have even deeper discounts and relationships in place. This is perhaps one of the most important considerations when selecting a 3PL. You also want to ask how the 3PL handles returns, and how the company factors in insurance and daily cutoff times for fulfillment. These may not seem important, but they might lengthen the delivery windows within which your customers receive your products—potentially negatively affecting your customers’ experience.

SYSTEMS AND TECHNOLOGY

You want a 3PL that stays on the cutting edge by implementing technologies related to inventory, tracking and shipping. This not only provides the speed and transparency of the data you need but it also keeps costs down, as both you and your 3PL partner can spot errors or inconsistencies that can be addressed immediately. Some systems also include predictive analytics, so you can get an idea of costs moving forward.

WHY TAYLORED SERVICES

Taylored Services is a fully integrated 3PL provider specializing in wholesale, retail and direct-to-consumer unit fulfillment. The company operates 1.5 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space within close proximity to the Gateway Ports of Los Angeles / Long Beach and Newark, NJ. 

E-commerce businesses need a partner with significant investments in systems and technology and established, long-term relationships with other interim suppliers along a box’s “shipping journey.” By using Taylored, clients can track their merchandise at every step through and from the warehouse to multiple points of destination.

SERVICES INCLUDE:

Warehousing & distribution

E-commerce

Supply chain management

Value-added services and merchandise rework

Transportation management services

Working with a full-service, integrated logistics provider like Taylored Services not only helps e-commerce businesses of all sizes to service customers more efficiently but also allows such businesses to scale when needed without significant investment.

Jake Wengroff writes about technology and financial services. A former technology reporter for CBS Radio, Jake covers such topics as e-commerce, security, mobility, eCommerce and IoT.

SOURCES:

https://www.shopify.com/enterprise/third-party-logistics-3pl

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third-party_logistics

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Carteret, NJ

Address:
800 Federal Boulevard
Carteret, NJ 07008

Size: 300,000 sqft

Technology:
• RF Technology
• Narrow aisle high bay rack system
• Apparel and Accessories
• High value storage area, secured yard
• Transload and Pool consolidation
• Omnichannel distribution

Chino, CA #1 & #2

Address:
14050 Norton Ave,
Chino, CA 91710

Size: 400,000 sqft

Major Equipment:
• Automated high speed sortation
• Locus Robotics

Technology:
• Synapse
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Apparel
• Footwear
• Accessories
• Jewelry
• Bulk Materials

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

JONATHAN ROSENTHAL - COB

Jonathan has spent a lifetime as an entrepreneur. He started his
first company, NetAir International, in 1983. It was innovative as
the first multi-city on-demand jet charter company and grew into
the largest operation of its kind in the U.S. His second venture was
in launching Saybrook Partners, a merchant bank in 1990 and
later Saybrook Corporate Opportunity Funds in 207. Jonathan
serves in numerous leadership roles, including as founder and
chairman of the LA Harbor Performance Enhancement Center,
WherehouseIT.com, and the Harvard Graduate School Leadership
Institute. He also serves on the Marine Transportation System
National Advisory Committee, Los Angeles Sustainable Freight
Advisory Board, and the University of Southern California Center
for Supply Chain Management board of directors. He earned a B.
A. in Philosophy from California State University, Northridge, B.A.
Sc. in International Law and Legal Studies from Uppsala
University and a J.D., law from Southwestern Law School.

Jonathan is passionate about both expanding and sharing his
knowledge and expertise. He has lectured in transformational
change at the University of Chicago, UCLA, John’s Hopkins, and
Harvard College.

JOE DESAYE - CEO TFMI

Joseph DeSaye has spent over 40 years in logistics. His journey began in 1980 when he co-founded FMI International with his father and brother, specializing in air and ocean forwarding services. Together, they expanded the company to include comprehensive services that grossed over $350 million in sales.

He has a proven track record of success, growth, and leadership within the logistics industry.

THOMAS MCCORMACK - CIO

Thomas has dedicated over 20 years of his career to working in IT for 3PL companies where he has grown to deeply understand the importance of keeping pace with a dynamic and ever-changing marketplace. Prior to joining Taylored in 2014, he led IT or a $2.8 billion window manufacturer and a $1.2 billion electronic media organization. He holds a degree in accelerated mathematics/calculus from LaGuardia Community College and an MBA with a focus on computer software engineering from Fordham University.

Thomas is passionate about coaching and mentoring teams and sharing his experience in cross-functional team leadership. He knows that one of the best ways to grow an organization in today’s society is through the implementation of effective technology that allows them to stay ahead.

MIKE YUSKO - CFO

Mike overseas finance, human resources, and legal at Taylored, as well as directing Taylored’s operating companies. After over 35 years in 3PL, vitamins and supplements, consumer products, engineering, and construction, he is a man of many talents. He has served as CFO at companies ranging in size from $50-$700 million and spent 15 years at PepsiCo as the senior finance leader of a $1.2 billion beverage unit.

Mike holds a B.S. in business administration and accounting from Clarion State College. He is passionate about providing solid leadership and applying “Fortune 50” know how to elevate smaller companies.

JIM DEVEAU - CEO

Jim Deveau is a retailer at heart, with over 20 years of experience leading in the retail industry with companies such as Lord & Taylor, AnnTaylor, Charming Shoppes, and Footstar. After assisting with Footstar’s restructure in 2004, Jim transitioned into the 3PL industry. Over the next ten years, he held various C-suite positions at FMI International, Summit International Logistics, and Toll Global Forwarding before becoming Taylored’s President and CEO and board director.

Jim is passionate about sharing his knowledge. Holding an undergraduate and graduate degree from Northeastern University, together with his extensive experience, he frequently speaks at industry trade shows and conferences and has been recognized as a leader within the industry. He also currently sits on the advisory board of warehouse exchange and was chosen by the US Chamber of Commerce to represent retail trade post 9/11.

Chino, CA #1 & #2

Address:
14050 Norton Ave,
Chino, CA 91710

Size: 400,000 sqft

Major Equipment:
• Automated high speed sortation
• Locus Robotics

Technology:
• Synapse
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Apparel
• Footwear
• Accessories
• Jewelry
• Bulk Materials

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

Ontario, CA Suite A & B

Address:
1495 E. Locust Street
Ontario, CA 91761

Size: 440,000 sqft

Technology:
• Highjump
• Accellos
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Apparel
• Footwear
• Accessories
• Jewelry
• Sporting Goods
• Home Goods
• Bulk Materials

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

Miami, FL

Address:
2100 NW 129th Ave, Suite 100
Miami, Fl 33182

Size: 319,000 sqft

Technology:
• RF Technology
• Narrow aisle high bay rack system
• Apparel and accessories
• Transload and pool consolidation
• Omnichannel distribution

Fontana, CA

Address:
8375 Sultana Ave
Fontana, CA 92335

Size: 225,000 sqft

Technology:
• Highjump
• Accellos
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Home Goods
• Bedding Accessories
• Electronics
• CPG Liquids

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

Mira Loma, CA

Address:
3355 Dulles Avenue
Mira Loma, CA 91752

Size: 540,000 sqft

Major Equipment:
• Automated high speed sortation

Technology:
• FoxPro
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Home Goods
• Electronics
• Furniture

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

Carson, CA #1 & #2

Address:
2000 East Carson St.
Carson, CA 90810
Size: 294,000 sqft

Technology:
• FoxPro
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Furniture

Processing:
• Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Transload
• VAS

San Pedro, CA

Address:
400 Westmont Drive
San Pedro, CA 90731

Size: 513,000 sqft

Technology:
• FoxPro
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Apparel
• Footwear
• Electronics
• Furniture

Processing:
• Wholesale, Retail, DTC
• Full Case Distribution
• Cross Dock
• Transload
• Pick & Pack
• Kitting
• VAS

Port of LA, CA

Address:
2401 E Pacific Coast Hwy
Wilmington, CA 90744

Size: 600,000 sqft

Technology:
• FoxPro
• Warehouse Management
• Transportation Management
• Routing & Compliance
• Document Management
• Custom Reporting
• Web Portal
• Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Specialty:
• Electronics
• Furniture
• Bulk Materials
• Home Goods

Processing:
• Transload
• Kitting

Edison, NJ

Address:
231 Mill Road,
Edison, NJ 08837

Size: 260,000 sqft

Technology:
• RF Technology
• Wire guided high bay rack system
• Apparel and accessories
• High value storage area
• Store consolidation
• Omnichannel distribution

Louisville, KY

Address:
7501 Winstead Drive
Louisville, KY 40258

Size: 319,000 sqft

Technology:
• RF Technology
• Wire guided high bay rack system
• Apparel, footwear, and accessories
• Omnichannel distribution

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