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West Coast and California Logistics Blog

Logistics Customer Service - The Shift From Paying to End Customer

Wed, Jun 11, 2014 @ 09:00 AM / by Weber Logistics

What is logistics customer service?  Well, traditionally it has meant logistics companies focused on providing great service to their paying customers.  But lately 3PL providers are taking a vested interest in the end customer – for consumer product companies, that would be the retailer  – to make sure all delivery compliance rules are met and to learn how to make the receiving process more efficient.

logistics customer serviceFor instance, in conversation with a 3PL, one retail chain asked if the following improvements could be made:

•    Punch holes in the sides of heavier boxes for easier maneuverability from dock to shelf.
•    Pick and pack orders according to category, with multiple products packed according to each aisle in the retail store.

Experienced 3PLs who deliver to retailers on behalf of their client are making sure that all expectations are met for their deliveries.  This includes shipments from manufacturers to the retailer’s distribution center and from the distribution center to the retail store. Feedback from the retailer at both levels is a critical factor to ensure good retailer scorecards and to reduce chargebacks for the shippers.  For information on how to reduce chargebacks, download our white paper on vendor compliance. 
How can 3PLs help the retailer?

It’s simple.  Meet face to face with the retailer to understand any idiosyncrasies involved when shipments are delivered to both the DC and the retail store.  Corporations are adopting a leaner logistics approach and sometimes there is a breakdown in the communication between manufacturer and retailer. 

3PLs have the know-how to bridge that gap and provide solutions where necessary.  Their experience comes from daily communication with the end customer as deliveries are made. 
What are the barriers to closer 3PL-retailer communication?

Well, some manufacturers may have concerns about what the 3PL will say.  Will they make a commitment on their behalf that may not be feasible?   Here are a few ways to overcome this concern:

•    Have a discussion between manufacturer and 3PL prior to any 3PL meetings with a retailer to establish ground rules. 
•    Have face to face visits between the 3PL and the retailer end with a report to the manufacturer before any promises are made.
•    Choose an experienced, reputable 3PL that you can rely on to represent your company’s interests.
•    Trust your 3PL to provide logistics customer service that will be an extension of your own logistics team.

At the end of the day, manufacturers want to be sure that their customers are happy with their entire supply chain, especially the final delivery.  Problems that recur without acknowledgment can fester over time.  Close 3PL communication with the end customer is the solution.

Weber Logistics has been providing 3PL company services since 1924.  Today, we offer nationwide supply chain services and we specialize in warehousing and distribution on the US West Coast.  To learn more about our full range of 3PL services, contact us at 855-GOWEBER (469-3237). 

Contact Weber Logistics:

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Topics: Logistics Management, 3PL, Logistics Customer Service

Written by Weber Logistics

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