In any industry, the biggest companies tend to get the most attention. But bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better, and that’s never been truer than in regard to third-party logistics (3PL) providers and carriers.
A new article on freightwaves.com explains why small-to-medium companies are taking up a significant portion of the trucking industry: https://www.freightwaves.com/news/mom-and-pops-are-taking-significant-share-of-trucking-industry. But is that a good thing? There are several reasons to believe it certainly is. These include:
- More personalized service. By their very nature, larger logistics brokers are geared toward the big picture. They tend to see the services they provide in a one-size-fits-all framework. Smaller 3PLs have a much better handle on personalized service with your specific needs in mind. You can expect a medium or smaller 3PL to take your concerns into account in their planning. They also tend to set-up and maintain accounts in a simpler, more understandable manner and will put thought and effort into ways to help you with savings and efficiency.
- Faster and more flexible. Compared to large companies, a smaller 3PL can make decisions on a scale of minutes and hours rather than days or weeks. That means they’ll be able to deal with any sudden, unforeseen issues much more nimbly than the big boys.
- Less expensive. You’ll often find lower prices for freight management with the little guys. That’s because mid-sized and smaller companies operate on a leaner and meaner level. They have lower general and administrative sales costs and they don’t have endless layers of management. In addition, years of having to compete with large companies has obliged them to focus on providing you with optimal value for your money.
- Experience. Because medium and smaller 3PLs have been evolving into a more and more significant part of the industry for a long time now, they have garnered the lion’s share of industry experience, and years of accumulating and cultivating clients have established their reliability. Their enhanced capabilities have led them to operate in a variety of modes, including both the business-to-consumer and business-to-business markets. Experience working with a plethora of manufacturers and distributors has generally increased their level of expertise in containers, load sizes, storage, products, transportation options, and delivery schedules, all very much to the benefit of their clients.
- Greater creativity. Big logistics companies are used to handling large jobs with little nuance involved. They are not well equipped for working outside those parameters. In contrast, mid-sized and smaller 3PLs work at a more eye-to-eye level with customers and are used to coming up with smart, effective solutions for any issues their clients might face.
- Top management is more hands-on. By their very nature, big companies have a lot on their plates. Leadership has to split their attention between more clients and they feel less obliged to get involved compared to the top people in smaller 3PLs, who are more likely to engage with you on a personal level.
At Hawkeye, we’re proud to be small in size but big in skills and first-rate customer service. We can move any load, keep it in good condition, and deliver it on time.