by Stephanie Miles
Published on 17 September 2013
In today's global economy, having access to accurate, real-time inventory data is critically important for all third-party logistics providers, public warehouses, and other warehouse operations. Warehouse companies seeking growth and scalability need to be able to track inventory and provide up-to-the-minute location information to supply chain business partners, like manufacturers, factories, and retailers. 3PL Central's 3PL Warehouse Manager WMS alleviates the challenges typically associated with warehouse management, making it easier for warehouse operators to manage their facilities and satisfy their customers.
In this 3PL Central review, I plan to compare the warehouse management platform's key features to those of its main competitors. Looking at 3PL Central from the perspective of a warehouse professional with minimal IT experience, I will assess the web-based platform's ease-of-use and customization features. I will also pay close attention to how 3PL Central's automation tools can improve warehouse efficiency.
3PL Central offers a SaaS system that 3PLs, public warehouses and warehouse operations of all kinds can use to expand their businesses at a minimal cost. Without any hardware to purchase or software to install, professionals can get right to work deploying 3PL Warehouse Manager at all of their facilities.
Already a proven success in the challenging 3PL warehouse environment, 3PL Central provides its clients with intuitive tools meant to help warehousing businesses run more seamlessly. Third-party logistics providers can service new customers, take on new vendors, and expand into new warehouses without worrying about increasing overhead costs being associated with their inventory management systems. Inventory automation features help to increase the accuracy of invoices, and decrease the chances of under-billing customers. These features also make it possible for providers to improve the overall customer service they provide.
3PL's Warehouse Manager stands apart from competing platforms with its real-time global inventory management tools. Warehouse operators can use 3PL Central to generate instant reports with real-time inventory information and shipment statuses for the retailers they work with. They can also set up the system to automatically notify customers whenever key warehouse events (like shipments going out or receipts becoming available) have occurred.
Basic features available to warehouses that use 3PL Central include order management with EDI (electronic data interchange) support, order allocation management, mobile barcode scanning, customizable packing slips, and direct FedEx and UPS integrations. 3PL Central offers a way for warehousing providers to manage inventory by lot number, serial number, and expiration date.
Warehouses also have the option to utilize 3PL Central's advanced billing features, which capture the costs associated with each internal transaction and track recurring business expenses over time.
Online automation tools effectively decrease the amount of one-on-one time that warehousing employees spend speaking with clients via telephone or in person, without sacrificing customer relationships in the slightest. On the contrary, manufacturers and other vendors actually feel more loyal to a warehousing company when they are notified about updated inventory information and shipment statuses in real-time, day or night.
3PL Central's web-based management system saves warehousing companies money by doing away with long-term contracts. Instead, users pay only for the features they need. Users can also add and remove warehouses from their internal system with just a few clicks of the mouse, and they can use 3PL Central's proprietary "Billing Wizard" to track all billable activity and charges by customer.
Use 3PL Central's Billing Wizard to calculate charges for each of your customers. 3PL Central will prompt your warehousing staff to manually enter the associated charges for each billable activity. The system then automatically tracks all handling, freight, and storage charges, separated by customer. It also calculates all charges automatically, decreasing the chances for human computation error.
The system can also be configured to send automatic email alerts to customers when important warehouse events occur. These events could include shipments going out, shipments coming in, receipts becoming available, and tracking information.
3PL Central offers continuous support services to its customers. 3PL Central encourages warehousing professionals to get in contact with questions via telephone or in-person. Basic support is included with every monthly 3PL Central subscription.
Pricing for 3PL Central works very differently from other warehouse management systems. The SaaS provider offers monthly subscription plans for small to mid-size warehouse operations that cost less than $500 per warehouse, per month. Clients are not required to sign any long-term contracts, and they do not need to worry about any hardware installations or IT security costs.
Warehousing operations and third-party logistics providers rely on state-of-the-art software to keep their businesses running smoothly. 3PL Central provides just that. The web-based system is intuitively designed, allowing warehouses to add and drop customers on the fly. By opting for a web-based SaaS delivery model, 3PL Central customers can effectively control their warehousing operations from any computer that has access to the Internet - 24 hours a day. Managers can review the work being completed by their employees remotely, without having to step foot into their warehouses. They can also decrease the chances for human error by integrating 3PL Central's automatic calculation tools into their existing billing practices.
Ratings: ease of use 4/5, features 5/5, value 5/5