Most businesses today do not have their own fleets unless they are large local, national or international companies that are doing continual shipping. Even with these companies, more and more national and global companies find it more cost-effective to work with third-party logistics services or 3PLs to handle their truckload freight needs.
There are several advantages to using 3PL companies for truckload freight shipments, all which can help to reduce prices and save your company money. Understanding how hiring outside of the company is actually a better and more cost-effective option, consider the following issues.
Fleet costs can be considerable for any company. This will include not only truck purchases but insurance, maintenance, inspections, and repairs. Then, there will the need to eventually replace the truck, often with a minimal resale value due to age and mileage.
In addition to the fleet costs, there is also going to be the need to hire drivers. This means additional staff on the payroll and additional costs to the company.
With trucks and drivers as part of the company, there is the need for specialized logistics management as well as dispatchers, driver managers, and fleet management specialists.
Typically, once you have fleets on the road, this is a 24-hour staffed position, at least at the dispatcher and driver manager positions. In addition, staff has to be prepared to assist the driver if there is a breakdown, accident or other unplanned problem with the delivery.
By working with a 3PL company, all of the issues are addressed by that company, leaving your staff to focus in on their job. Additionally, since the 3PL service does volume work, they are often able to get much lower truckload freight rates for your loads than you would be able to if negotiating directly with the freight company.