3PL Software Comparison: Top 3 Solutions to Consider

Third party logistics (3PL) is a term that has come into use within recent years to describe intermediary support functions within supply chain management (SCM). As businesses have become increasingly globalized and IT-driven, there has been tremendous pressure to change the way products are delivered. The advent of third party distribution services has meant that companies could divest themselves of expensive assets (like warehouses) and develop trimmer, more competitive business practices.

Features to Review in a 3PL Software Comparison

Since 3PL may include transportation management, warehouse management and/or distribution management, the software requirements will vary and a 3PL software comparison may not always be “apples to apples.” However, all 3PL software will provide features that provide inventory visibility to the logistics provider and their customers. This will include notifications of inventory receiving (inbound), storing (warehousing), and shipping (outbound). Real-time awareness of inventory status is also a strength of the software.

3PL software will also include accounting functionality so that whatever services are provided, the information seamlessly interfaces with the invoicing and billing requirements in real time. As you do a 3PL software comparison, each of these features will be important for you to review.

3PL Software Comparison: The Benefits

Logistics has been one of the first business functions to be fully outsourced because of the many benefits this provides. 3PL is all about fulfillment. The 3PL environment is a technology-rich environment where tasks are performed quickly, correctly and smartly. This provides businesses with the competitive advantage required in today’s market and permits them to remain focused on their core competencies.

Flexibility is key to 3PL. Not every 3PL vendor offers the same services and not every client will have the same requirements. 3PL software provides the flexibility needed to attract a variety of clients and to easily monitor individual accounts. The software contains features which keep the 3PL business operating with the highest possible degree of efficiency. Because the software fully integrates receiving, warehousing, shipping and accounting, there is up-to-the-moment accurate insight into all of the provider’s services. Fulfilling the client’s orders with speed and accuracy–and properly billing for those services is–what 3PL software is all about.

A 3PL Software Comparison Shows Traker Systems Provides Quality Features

Traker 3PL is software designed for public warehouse owners/operators charging customers for storage and services. The software provides support for all receiving and shipping requirements. Customers can easily view the status of inventory, and the software even keeps track of inventory expiration dates. Pick and pack functionality is part of the warehouse fulfillment feature and charges may be easily customized. Invoicing is fully integrated. In addition, Traker offers software on either end of the 3PL spectrum. A Manufacturing and Distribution package can handle added sales and delivery services. For companies requiring less complex functionality, an inventory control package called Lite Edition is available.

A 3PL Software Comparison: Maves

Maves 3PL software provides integrated warehouse, transportation and accounting systems. Warehouse management (WMS) handles received inventory, specifies workflows and verifies putaway. Inventory may be managed and tracked according to product or client with RF (radio frequency) devices which provide time and date stamping. Customers are able to define inventory rotation schedules and the software enables the provider to service multiple order management requirements such as split or consolidated orders and cross-docking.

Taking a Closer Look at IntelliTrack in a 3PL Software Comparison

This on-demand 3PL software supports public warehouses renting storage space and supplying services to clients. The software allows the provider to manage more than one warehouse from a single location and provides customers the ability to check the status of inventory at any location at any time. The client-friendly software even allows them to create purchase orders on-the-fly.

3PL providers can keep track of all warehousing charges whether related to storage, handling, or ancillary tasks. The software’s accounting features allow for high degrees of customization and provide accurate, real time invoicing that can be viewed by the provider or the client in a secure, online environment.

Making a proper 3PL software comparison requires knowing what services are required and then comparing providers offering similar support functionality. Nevertheless, all 3PL software comparisons should examine inventory visibility for the provider and the client, financial features and software flexibility.

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