An annual study of the third-party logistics industry confirms that China is the key country for growth in international sourcing and trade. Logistics service providers are a major factor in enabling this growth. Released today at CSCMP’s annual conference in San Antonio, the 11th Annual 3PL study, published by Capgemini and the Georgia Institute of Technology, in collaboration with SAP and DHL, the study looks at the use of 3PLs in the United States, Europe and Asia, and offers insight into the future of the 3PL industry.
Just over half of survey respondents say they intend to further expand their activities into China. Their plans call for importing and exporting of finished goods to and from China (51%), outsourcing production to third parties in China (47%) and creating production facilities (41%). A vast majority of the senior supply-chain executives surveyed for the study indicate that they use current 3PL providers to help deal with the logistic challenges that exist as part of their expansions into China.
The study also shows declining satisfaction around 3PL providers’ IT capabilities. Results from previous years have indicated a gradual decrease in the satisfaction rate and this year it reached an all-time low. Only 35% of 3PL customers say that they are satisfied with their 3PL providers IT capabilities. This is a significant drop from 2003 when 75% of North America respondents indicated they were satisfied. This decline is cause for concern because 92% of this year’s respondents say that IT capabilities are a necessary element of 3PL provider expertise.