When Is It A Good Time To Start Looking For A Fulfillment Company?
Posted On March 16, 2015 by
Have you been spending the majority of your time receiving product shipments, organizing inventory and repacking products to send to your retail customers? Or worse yet, are you running out of storage space for your products? These are good business problems to have and easily solvable with the right outsourcing plan. Although it might not seem like it at the moment, this is a great time for you to start shopping for the right fulfillment provider that can step in and take care of some of the supply chain aspects of your business so you can concentrate on your core activities.
Building Your Business
If you find that you are tied up with the inventory, packaging, and shipping of your products, you probably don’t have much time leftover to concentrate on actually growing your business. Just think if you were able to reallocate that time to research and development of new products or on sales and marketing efforts. You would be able to take your business to a whole new level. A good fulfillment partner can provide the staff and systems to manage all of your ordering, packaging, shipping and even customer service needs so you can refocus your energy on efforts that grow your business.
Creating More Space
Let’s say your business is already growing rapidly. You probably have started to notice you are running out of room to store your inventory. This is when a fulfillment provider can be a great place to consider warehousing your product to help you manage increased volume and ensure you can expand your product lines in the future. Just be sure to know exactly how much space is available and what their plan for expansion is if it looks like they are at capacity.
Most fulfillment houses provide an expert staff to organize and track your inventory in an automated manner so you don’t have to worry about it. The increased efficiency will provide you with better functionality and more time to spend in other areas of your business. A good fulfillment company will have a real-time inventory control system that you can access at anytime to review your own inventory and where a product order is at in any given stage of processing.
Better Courier Rates
Because fulfillment providers have other clients, they manage large volumes of shipments. This allows them the distinct advantage in negotiating the most competitive postal rates with all the major couriers domestically and internationally in most cases. The cost savings are significant and will help to absorb some of your other costs like warehousing.
While shopping around for a third party provider, it’s important that you understand the costs involved and do some comparison shopping with multiple vendors. They will typically supply a line itemed breakdown that includes all the fees associated. Once you’ve decided which fulfillment house will work best for your company needs, always ask for references so you can verify their quality of service. It’s always best to look for referrals from reputable companies who already use a fulfillment provider. If you don’t have access to these type of companies, the International Warehouse Logistics Association (iwla.com) provides a list of fulfillment companies that can get you off to a great start.