Getting a new 3PL client up and running smoothly and timely is a challenge for all 3rd party warehouse companies. Once a sale to a new shipper is complete, a series of activities in all departments in the 3PL begins. Coordinating the staging at each level is critical to making a go-live date.
Dave Jesse, Chief Operating Officer at Bonded Logistics, Charlotte, NC participated in a panel discussion at Cadre Technologies User Conference this year about customer on-boarding.
Jesse stated that before you take on a new customer you need to recognize the challenges that you will be faced with. Some of which include:
- How to effectively integrate that clients, products, services, and client specific processes
- How to organize a new clients products in the warehouse in order to achieve required service levels, and still work efficiently
- How to organize material flows and information flows
- How to bill clients for provided services
“Our goal before on-boarding a client is to understand and incorporate Client requirements, to be able to plan for a seamless transition that’s on a budget and schedule, and to integrate into existing network operating process, all while identifying and achieving a targeted “Go Live” date,” explained Jesse.
Bonded’s process involves an on-boarding team that develops a Project Plan for each new client in order to effectively utilize resources and reduce risk.
Before the on-boarding process begins the team answers critical questions such as:
- What did we just sell?
- What problem are we solving?
- What type of product is it?
- What is the targeted building to be stored in?
- Is there anything unique about the customer?
- What are the timeline and pricing requirements?
Next the team takes 4 critical Steps:
- Develop a project plan
- Create Weekly Project Meetings in order to coordinate all departments’ activities to successfully hit the “Go Live” date.
- Identify Critical Path Items such as Integration, Documentation Requirements and EDI
- Delineate Go Live Support team
All companies have different processes for on-boarding new clients and on top of that each new client will be on-boarded in vastly different processes, but as long as you have a structure in place for on-boarding, the process becomes easier.
If you would like to learn more about Bonded Logistics Warehouses go to www.bondedlogistics.com.