There are various factors that might motivate a business to outsource its warehousing needs to a third-party specialist. Businesses might need additional storage capacity to meet operational growth or they may not have the logistical capacity to manage a warehouse facility of the size they require. Whatever the industry or business, using third-party specialists can help you relieve operational pressures, become more cost-effective and improve service delivery.
Indeed, there are many reasons to consider outsourcing your warehouse operations. Introducing experts in the field of storage, transportation and warehouse management could be the shift in functionality that allows a business to explore new and exciting possibilities, in different areas. Warehousing specialists have access to technologies, expertise and experience in the implementation of the latest techniques and tools for streamlining operations.
That is probably not enough to convince your discerning eye; if you are not, currently, under warehousing or operational pressure. Well, the extensive benefits of onboarding third-party warehousing specialists might be more applicable to your business than you think. Here are ten reasons to consider outsourcing your warehouse operations:
- More Expertise Allows for Better Service
Warehousing is a critical component for manufacturers and commercial businesses across the country. South African companies that outsource their warehousing operations to third-party specialists are able to offload this critical piece of the business to experts who know exactly what they are doing. Introducing more expertise into your business operations means better service by you, for you and for end-customers.
- Streamlining Operations and Supply Chains
Towards the top of your company’s priorities list should be the ability to streamline your business’s operations. Simplifying the processes by which you conduct your business will help you grow and expand the products or services you offer. Delegating the function and burden of warehouse management onto third-party specialists will, instantly, improve the coordination of stakeholders across your supply chain.
- Limiting Business Risks
Business owners want to limit the risks associated with running their business as much as possible. By outsourcing your warehouse operations, they are assuming all the risk that comes with storing, managing and transporting your stock. You no longer have to worry about if your goods are safe and secure. In particular, for businesses that require huge warehouses or special storage conditions, such as cold storage.
- Better Compliance with Regulations and Guidelines
As with any aspect of business, there are consumer protections and legal compliance requirements that will determine how you run your business. Having warehouse experts in your corner can help ensure you knockout every one of the regulations associated with this aspect of your business. They will know the space and understand how best to navigate all requirements, while ensuring effective service delivery.
- Keep Up with the Latest and Greatest Technology
Warehousing specialists are constantly introducing new and improved technologies to their storage services. Yes, your business could benefit from introducing the latest technology and tools to your internal warehousing operation. However, it is important to note that specialists are willing and ready to make the financial and training investments needed to keep up with the latest innovations in their field – so you do not have to.
- Actionable Insights and Improved Business Intelligence
Actionable insights and improved business intelligence for decision-making is a key consideration for anyone looking to invest in third-party specialists. Outsourcing the data collection, analysis and reporting associated with supply chain logistics can be a huge opportunity for business owners. Warehousing partners can help you handle supply chain logistics more effectively, through inventory tracking, supply, fulfilment and general warehouse management.
- More Time and Resources for What You Do Best
Much like the warehouse logistics partners we are talking about, successful businesses are able to prioritise, commodify and expand their expertise. If a business owner is able to effectively delegate the management of different operations to trusted employees or partners; it gives that business the space to invest more time and resources into its expertise and what they do best.
- Only Use What You Need
Finding the perfect warehouse or storage facility for your business is a difficult prospect at the best of times. South African businesses need to be careful about how and where they invest in commercial storage space. By outsourcing the warehousing operations of your business, you can rely on the expertise of storage and logistics professionals to get the exact warehousing capacity you need.
- Reduced Operating Costs
We saved this one for the end because most companies will prioritise cost-effectiveness over everything else when making business decisions. Reducing operating costs is the best way to improve the productivity and profitability of your company. Outsourcing warehousing will give businesses the option reduces the burden of logistics and storage costs. Not to mention, streamlining supply chain management processes and service delivery practises for reducing operating costs.
- The Process Is Clear and Simple
In order to enjoy all of these benefits, South African companies need to make sure they are picking the right third-party warehousing partner for their businesses. Once you have made the all-important decision to outsource your warehousing operations, consider these ten points to ensure you make the right call:
A 10-point checklist for warehouse outsourcing
- Understand that outsourcing is an important part of refining the supply chain process, but cannot fix everything.
- Consider all supply chain stakeholders and potential – positive or negative – impacts on other business operations.
- Make sure your business has the IT infrastructure and capacity to interface with your logistics provider’s digital systems.
- Ensure that consistent and accessible data is available through your partner.
- Consider all included and additional options to guarantee you are getting services that meet your exact requirements.
- Look at your prospective logistics partner’s standard operating procedures and confirm that they meet your own standards – without exception.
- Understand the logistics and project management capabilities of your third-party warehousing partner and make sure they measure up to your business’s growth potential.
- Do not micromanage the logistics and supply chain operations around your warehousing operations; the point is to relieve your business of those operational burdens.
- Manage and monitor the performance of your outsourced warehousing operations and have an agreement to refine different aspects of the storage that can be improved.
- Once you find the right logistics partner, trust in them and their expertise, so you can better focus on what you do best.
M6T are an established and trusted freight forwarding and logistics partner for many of South Africa’s leading businesses. We have a global network that spans across the international shipping industry and helps us provide world-class 3PL and 4PL services for our clients. Contact M6T at our Johannesburg or Durban branch today for all of your transportation and logistics needs.