Skip to content Skip to main menu
News icon

SMEs - Six things to look for when selecting a logistics provider

CML’s Customer Account Manager, Michael Smith, identifies six key elements that small to medium businesses should look for when making the decision on a logistics provider.

With the supply chain industry becoming increasingly competitive, it can be challenging for emerging small to medium enterprises (SMEs) to select a logistics provider for their warehousing and distribution. 

Often the biggest obstacles for SMEs are outlining the requirements for their business, in order to find a suitable company, capable of handling their needs without attaching a hefty price tag. 

CML’s Customer Account Manager, Michael Smith, identifies six key elements that small to medium businesses should look for when making the decision on a logistics provider.

1. Flexibility
When the business is in the early stages of establishing itself, it can be difficult to predict the fluctuation of product sales and therefore the warehousing and distribution needs. This is why a flexible partnership with a logistics provider which has the resources to work on a reactive basis rather than from rigid long term planning is essential. Smaller third party logistics providers (3PLs) are more likely to be geared up to respond to unexpected surges in business quicker than the big players, while still providing an equally high standard of facility. 

2. Familiarity 
Does the logistics provider have experience with a business of a similar size or type? Or is familiar with the same line of business? If the answer is yes, then any teething problems with adapting resources are instantly eradicated. This presents a cost effective option as the facilities are already in place and less time is required for planning.  

3. Expertise
Another benefit for SMEs choosing a logistics provider with similar experience is the advice they are able to offer. Some businesses look for a working partnership relationship where the logistics provider offers more than just warehousing and distribution but is also a reliable partner to support the growing SME and offer personal, tailored advice. 

4. Scalability 
A pay as you go model for the service is often the most economical route, allowing the partnership to increase alongside the success of the business, rather than paying for an agreed warehouse footprint. A logistics provider with warehousing storage facilities can also present a money saving opportunity as it would prevent the business from outsourcing to a storage provider.  

5. Location
Centrally located providers offer an instant solution to keeping service costs down for SMEs. If excellent transport links are in place, the business will see a better service for their customers, resulting in increased product sales.

6. Links
Strong international freight links are important for future and current trade opportunity. If the logistics provider has the resources to provide a complete solution for an SME’s freight forwarding it will again prevent outsourcing and reduce costs to the business.

Michael Smith commented, “We understand the difficulties SMEs face with their supply chain, which is why CML offers a bespoke solution for businesses. A team of dedicated account managers are on hand from stage one to help identify the requirements of the business and subsequently produce a cost effective, tailor made service."

More and more SMEs are choosing Core Management Logistics (CML) to be the sole provider for their international freight, warehousing and distribution needs.

Michael added, “One is example of our working partnerships with SMEs is the service we provide for online womenswear brand Finery London. Finery was looking for a logistics provider with enthusiasm to work together on the solution and CML was able to offer the expertise on how Finery’s supply chain could operate. 

“It is really satisfying to play a part in the success of all the developing brands we work with and we hope to continue to expand this area of our business.”

Operating from its central location at Magna Park, Lutterworth, CML’s flexibility and experience with some of the UK’s leading brands is the reason why so many emerging businesses, including fashion designer Marcus Lupfer , Björn Borg and Triumph lingerie have put their trust in the 3PL.

CML has international freight forwarding links in Europe, Asia and the Americas and has the resources to provide fulfilment, quality control, and warehousing space storage all under one roof.

have a question? Speak to The Team

We believe in the personal touch so why not give us a call, we are always happy to help.