4PL 3PL
Independent from any asset driven businesses Tied down to assets (e.g. transport, warehouses, software, IT and others) which affect their bottom lines
Single point of contact for the entire supply chain Point of contact only for the specific segment of the supply chain that they operate in
Client focused – fully interested in the improvement and efficiency of the client’s supply chain Dual goals – partially interested in improving the client’s supply chain. More interested in maximising usage of own assets (even if they are costlier for the client)
Best resources (internal + external) used at all times Tied down to own resources (e.g. warehouses, transport, etc)
Completely transparent and open book philosophy for all financial and operational processes Limited transparency for financial and operational processes
Overlooks and improves the entire length of the supply chain Overlooks and improves only the individual segment of the supply chain it is operating in
Completely flexible cost structure Partially flexible cost structure
Maximum knowledge transfer and Business Intelligence gain Little or no knowledge transfer and Business Intelligence gain
Completely agile to react to market changes/disruptions Slower or unable to react to market changes/disruptions due to the need to use own assets