Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future

Hans-Joachim Schramm, Carolin Nicole Czaja, Michael Dittrich, Matthias Mentschel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: This paper aims at analysing the potential future of the 4PL concept based on expert opinions with special regard to the influence of digitalization. Service arrangements, provider capabilities and benefits resulting from a 4PL partnership are compared in current and future configurations.
Design/methodology/approach: The research follows a mixed methods approach with semi-structured interviews followed by an expert panel. This builds the basis for an online questionnaire to inquire on important future aspects for the 4PL concept by a sample of respondents from multinational companies.
Findings: Our results show a clear trend away from simply organising transportation and logistics activities towards the provision of an IT platform as well as further service activities such as planning, analytics and monitoring. Along with this, IT capabilities appear to be an important differentiator for 4PL providers in the future. Moreover, relationships between 4PL providers and their clients become closer and more strategic, which leads to a customer valuing not only direct cost reductions but rather improvements resulting from optimized operations through superior analysis and planning functions.
Research limitations/implications: The sampling frame is mainly focused on multinational companies with logistics operations in Western Europe, namely the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).
Practical implications: Our findings not only support 4PL providers in assessing ways of engaging with their potential customers but they also help their clients to understand how a 4PL provider could be a valuable partner in mastering the present digitalization of logistics activities.
Original/value: Based on the adoption of the 4PL concept today, this paper identifies opportunities for future 4PL providers with regard to input from different stakeholders.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017
EditorsDaniel Hellström, Joakim Kembro, Hajnalka Bodnar
Place of PublicationLund
PublisherNOFOMA
Publication date2017
Pages626-641
ISBN (Electronic)9789177533375
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventThe 29th NOFOMA Conference 2017: Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference - Lund Universitet, Lund, Sweden
Duration: 8 Jun 20179 Jun 2017
Conference number: 29
http://www.lth.se/nofoma2017

Conference

ConferenceThe 29th NOFOMA Conference 2017: Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference
Number29
LocationLund Universitet
CountrySweden
CityLund
Period08/06/201709/06/2017
Internet address

Bibliographical note

CBS Library does not have access to the material

Keywords

  • Fourth-party logistics
  • Digitalization
  • IT capabilities

Cite this

Schramm, H-J., Czaja, C. N., Dittrich, M., & Mentschel, M. (2017). Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future. In D. Hellström, J. Kembro, & H. Bodnar (Eds.), Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017 (pp. 626-641). Lund: NOFOMA.
Schramm, Hans-Joachim ; Czaja, Carolin Nicole ; Dittrich, Michael ; Mentschel, Matthias. / Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future. Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017. editor / Daniel Hellström ; Joakim Kembro ; Hajnalka Bodnar. Lund : NOFOMA, 2017. pp. 626-641
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title = "Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future",
abstract = "Purpose: This paper aims at analysing the potential future of the 4PL concept based on expert opinions with special regard to the influence of digitalization. Service arrangements, provider capabilities and benefits resulting from a 4PL partnership are compared in current and future configurations.Design/methodology/approach: The research follows a mixed methods approach with semi-structured interviews followed by an expert panel. This builds the basis for an online questionnaire to inquire on important future aspects for the 4PL concept by a sample of respondents from multinational companies.Findings: Our results show a clear trend away from simply organising transportation and logistics activities towards the provision of an IT platform as well as further service activities such as planning, analytics and monitoring. Along with this, IT capabilities appear to be an important differentiator for 4PL providers in the future. Moreover, relationships between 4PL providers and their clients become closer and more strategic, which leads to a customer valuing not only direct cost reductions but rather improvements resulting from optimized operations through superior analysis and planning functions. Research limitations/implications: The sampling frame is mainly focused on multinational companies with logistics operations in Western Europe, namely the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).Practical implications: Our findings not only support 4PL providers in assessing ways of engaging with their potential customers but they also help their clients to understand how a 4PL provider could be a valuable partner in mastering the present digitalization of logistics activities.Original/value: Based on the adoption of the 4PL concept today, this paper identifies opportunities for future 4PL providers with regard to input from different stakeholders.",
keywords = "Fourth-party logistics, Digitalization, IT capabilities, Fourth-party logistics, Digitalization, IT capabilities",
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year = "2017",
language = "English",
pages = "626--641",
editor = "Daniel Hellstr{\"o}m and Joakim Kembro and Hajnalka Bodnar",
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Schramm, H-J, Czaja, CN, Dittrich, M & Mentschel, M 2017, Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future. in D Hellström, J Kembro & H Bodnar (eds), Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017. NOFOMA, Lund, pp. 626-641, Lund, Sweden, 08/06/2017.

Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future. / Schramm, Hans-Joachim; Czaja, Carolin Nicole; Dittrich, Michael; Mentschel, Matthias.

Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017. ed. / Daniel Hellström; Joakim Kembro; Hajnalka Bodnar. Lund : NOFOMA, 2017. p. 626-641.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

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T1 - Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future

AU - Schramm, Hans-Joachim

AU - Czaja, Carolin Nicole

AU - Dittrich, Michael

AU - Mentschel, Matthias

N1 - CBS Library does not have access to the material

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - Purpose: This paper aims at analysing the potential future of the 4PL concept based on expert opinions with special regard to the influence of digitalization. Service arrangements, provider capabilities and benefits resulting from a 4PL partnership are compared in current and future configurations.Design/methodology/approach: The research follows a mixed methods approach with semi-structured interviews followed by an expert panel. This builds the basis for an online questionnaire to inquire on important future aspects for the 4PL concept by a sample of respondents from multinational companies.Findings: Our results show a clear trend away from simply organising transportation and logistics activities towards the provision of an IT platform as well as further service activities such as planning, analytics and monitoring. Along with this, IT capabilities appear to be an important differentiator for 4PL providers in the future. Moreover, relationships between 4PL providers and their clients become closer and more strategic, which leads to a customer valuing not only direct cost reductions but rather improvements resulting from optimized operations through superior analysis and planning functions. Research limitations/implications: The sampling frame is mainly focused on multinational companies with logistics operations in Western Europe, namely the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).Practical implications: Our findings not only support 4PL providers in assessing ways of engaging with their potential customers but they also help their clients to understand how a 4PL provider could be a valuable partner in mastering the present digitalization of logistics activities.Original/value: Based on the adoption of the 4PL concept today, this paper identifies opportunities for future 4PL providers with regard to input from different stakeholders.

AB - Purpose: This paper aims at analysing the potential future of the 4PL concept based on expert opinions with special regard to the influence of digitalization. Service arrangements, provider capabilities and benefits resulting from a 4PL partnership are compared in current and future configurations.Design/methodology/approach: The research follows a mixed methods approach with semi-structured interviews followed by an expert panel. This builds the basis for an online questionnaire to inquire on important future aspects for the 4PL concept by a sample of respondents from multinational companies.Findings: Our results show a clear trend away from simply organising transportation and logistics activities towards the provision of an IT platform as well as further service activities such as planning, analytics and monitoring. Along with this, IT capabilities appear to be an important differentiator for 4PL providers in the future. Moreover, relationships between 4PL providers and their clients become closer and more strategic, which leads to a customer valuing not only direct cost reductions but rather improvements resulting from optimized operations through superior analysis and planning functions. Research limitations/implications: The sampling frame is mainly focused on multinational companies with logistics operations in Western Europe, namely the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).Practical implications: Our findings not only support 4PL providers in assessing ways of engaging with their potential customers but they also help their clients to understand how a 4PL provider could be a valuable partner in mastering the present digitalization of logistics activities.Original/value: Based on the adoption of the 4PL concept today, this paper identifies opportunities for future 4PL providers with regard to input from different stakeholders.

KW - Fourth-party logistics

KW - Digitalization

KW - IT capabilities

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KW - IT capabilities

M3 - Article in proceedings

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EP - 641

BT - Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017

A2 - Hellström, Daniel

A2 - Kembro, Joakim

A2 - Bodnar, Hajnalka

PB - NOFOMA

CY - Lund

ER -

Schramm H-J, Czaja CN, Dittrich M, Mentschel M. Fourth Party Logistics in a Digital Future. In Hellström D, Kembro J, Bodnar H, editors, Proceedings of the 29th Annual Nordic Logistics Research Network Conference. NOFOMA 2017. Lund: NOFOMA. 2017. p. 626-641