Two-thirds of logistics leaders increased their logistics outsourcing budgets in 2021, and nearly three-quarters say they anticipate an increase over the next two years, according to a Gartner, Inc. survey, released this week.
The data show that shippers are increasingly relying on their third-party logistics services provider (3PL) partners to manage disruption and market volatility, and that greater collaboration between the two parties is critical moving forward. Improving technology, reducing costs, and increasing customer satisfaction are logistics leaders’ top priorities–and key areas where they are turning to their 3PL partners for support.
Gartner surveyed nearly 300 supply chain professionals in the United States, Europe, and Asia-Pacific for the report.
“Nearly two-thirds of survey respondents said 3PL service providers had a positive or extremely positive effect on their competitiveness,” David Gonzalez, vice president analyst with the Gartner Supply Chain practice, said in a statement announcing the report. “This is the perfect foundation to build a long-lasting and meaningful partnership that enables joint investments and transparent information exchange.”
Looking ahead, relationship management will become an essential task for logistics leaders, the report also found.
“To have a productive and collaborative work relationship, both shippers and 3PLs must listen to each other and understand the other parties’ perspective. For example, shippers must ensure that they have a clear understanding of the 3PLs’ capabilities and needs,” according to the report. “Similarly, 3PLs must carefully listen to their shippers to manage expectations and identify future areas of opportunity.”