Fourth-Party Logistics (4PL)
Also known as “4PL”’s and/or “lead logistics providers,” a Fourth-party logistics firm is a consulting firm specializing in the logistics, transportation, and supply chain management industries. It is an independent, singularly accountable, and non-asset based logistics provider. 4PL’s give a 360 degree view of all options in the market without focusing specifically on their own ability to implement the recommendations they give. A 4PL firm typically contracts out logistical operations to specialist firms (also known as, 3PL’s) and coordinates the activities of the third party. The main function of a 4PL is to assemble resources, capabilities and technology within the supply chain.