Finding the right talent for your e-commerce distribution center or 3PL will mean ensuring that your new hires possess specific skills. Contrary to what many business owners believe, distribution center and 3PL positions require very different skill sets. By understanding these differences, you can ensure that your next round of hiring is more efficient and productive.

warehouse storage aisleThe Distribution Center

The distribution center is the modern solution to product storage. Instead of having several warehouses from which products are shipped, there is a single center from which all customer orders are filled. This requires services such as or preparation and processing, shipping and receiving, and performance measurement of these to be completed in-house. In addition to filling customer orders, the distribution center can also offer a range of other services, including packaging, labeling, and transportation.

Distribution center recruiters search for those with product picking skills, as well as those with computer experience. These centers also require talent possessing the skills to operate the machinery which moves product from one area to another. Pallet tagging and inventory experience will also be required for individuals who will work in the receiving department. Floor supervisors ensure proper execution of jobs, while safety, security, and maintenance personnel all work to keep inventory and employees protected.

The 3PL

3PL, or third-party logistics providers, are involved with how products move from one location to another. More specifically, 3PLs receive inventory from the supplier or manufacturer, guiding inventory to the distribution center, within the distribution center, and then from the distribution center to the customer. Many distribution centers will often choose to concentrate on the preparation and processing of customer orders and returns and outsource their logistics to 3PL providers.

staff packaging boxes

Some of the skills required for 3PLs can include experience with climate control and storage of high-value goods, forecasting the demand for certain stock, and the picking and packing of inventory, as well as skills required for driving large transportation vehicles. Those with experience in supply chain management, as well as skills involving technology management, risk mitigation, and the brokerage of freight will be ideal for these businesses.

How to Get the Best Talent

You may not need to look any further for needed talent than your existing employees. It can be a good idea to check for needed skills within your company before searching a wider area. If your existing employees don’t possess the skills you need, you can begin advertising your open positions if it is within your budget to do so.

 If you find there are insufficient resources available to advertise and process applicants, there is another option, which is to use the skills and connections of warehouse recruiters. They understand the needs of distribution centers and 3PLs and can help you determine the future hiring needs of your growing business. Delrecruiters puts its talent to work for you and hand-picks from small pools of highly skilled candidates. Find out how to get the right talent when you need it by emailing david@delcrecuiters.com.