Using the Resource Based View Theory to analyse Logistics Competencies of a Small Third Party Logistics Firm

The systematic management of 3PL began to develop in the second half of the 1980s and it has been adopted by more and more manufacturers who want to expand their business. Currently, 3PL occupies a critical portion of the whole logistic provision system and contributes to about 28% of total logistics in the European Union.

How 3PL gained a sustainable future has been a heated discussion in the field. Multiple theories have been proposed. In our paper, the Resource-Based View (RBV) theory was introduced and studied as an approach.

The purpose of this paper is to test the ability of the RBV to describe and analyze logistics competencies of third party logistics firms. The qualitative approach was chosen as the methodology, since the author hoped to get rich and deep information for analysis.

We interviewed two persons at FLB(which is a 3PL company). FLB lost their major customer, Ericsson, and decided to change their business strategy to offer more than only providing traditional 3PL service.

In the analysis part, combined with the RBV theory and the interview materials, four critical resources were identified and discussed. FLB is now planning to keep their core competitiveness with Human Resources and they plan to develop their Human Resources at first then use Human Resources to drive three other resources.

Through the case study of FLB, we developed a model based on RBV in the use of other 3PL that companies can use to improve their logistics competencies. In conclusion, this paper tests RBV theory and application with a 3PL company, and proves that RBV theory can be a quite all-inclusive approach for the company to identify and analyze their existing and potential resources. At the same time, the core competitive resource – Human Resources is also discussed.
Source: University of Gävle
Author: Hu, Fangyuan | Yu, Qinghui

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