Georgia Tech 2008 Third-Party Logistics Report

Supply Chain Security

Government supply chain security regulations are highly focused on deterring terrorism, but for 3PL users, theft is the top-of-mind security concern. However, the changing business environment means companies must focus more attention on ensuring protection from a range of potential causes of supply chain disruption: other security threats, natural disasters, port or transportation shutdowns, and product tampering. Users are generally satisfied with 3PLs’ security performance to date, with 76% calling their 3PLs secure or very secure. However, a review of specific supply chain security measures reveals a gap between 3PL users’ expectations and the current security capabilities of their 3PLs. 3PL users believe physical security, collaboration and alerts are the most effective means for 3PLs to provide security. Users appear more concerned with the financial and operational effects of meeting compliance mandates than the terrorist acts they’re intended to prevent. Fortunately, there are a number of concrete steps companies and their 3PLs can take to assess and address security gaps, with attaining visibility, setting up the right processes, and minimizing touches being prominent among them. Perhaps the best news is that companies and 3PLs innovating in supply chain security have proved that these steps also yield considerable
collateral benefits that help recoup costs and improve the overall state of the supply chain.

See section on Supply Chain Security (pp. 28-33)