Supply Chain Strategy Business: Key Steps to Get Started
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s the importance of the supply chain. When lockdowns brought global supply chains to a standstill, people quickly saw the necessity of not only the supply chain itself, by also having the right supply chain strategy.
The added attention has also made people take note of a major need in this growing industry. It’s been called a “wake-up call for supply chain management.” With so much demand for supply chain consultants, many people are looking at starting their own supply chain business or partnering with a supply chain franchise.
Of course, opening a distribution strategy business requires a lot of strategic planning. Here are the key steps you need to follow to ensure you don’t miss a beat when starting your business.
Research and Build Industry Expertise
The first step in starting your supply chain strategy career is identifying where your experience puts you in the best position to succeed. Logistics and supply chain management can be complex industries. Having a background as a supply chain industry professional goes a long way toward building a strong foundation for your supply chain management franchise.
Military veterans with logistics experience are also well-positioned to succeed as supply chain consultants. Carefully review your own experience to determine if a new career as a supply chain consultant is right for you.
Identify Your Goals
While you research your future career in the exciting world of supply chain strategy, it’s also important to identify what you’re hoping to get out of your future career. Is your goal monetary? Then you need to plan on what is going to make you the most money in the long run. Maybe you’re looking for a better work-life balance or more time with your family.
Whatever your goals are, it’s important that your business plan aligns with those goals and is going to help you get there. Research both the industry and any potential franchisors to learn more about their values and ensure that these reflect what you want to achieve out of your own career.
Craft Your Business Plan
Now that you’ve decided a logistics business is right for you and you know what you want to get from it, it’s time to put together a business plan to make it happen. They say that “prior preparation prevents poor performance,” and it’s just as true in business as it is in life.
Take your time to sit down and build your business plan carefully. The Small Business Administration has templates and guides to help get you started. At the very least, your plan should include a summary and description of your business and what it does. It should also include research on your industry, your competition, and who your customers will be.
Your business plan may also double as an investment proposal for potential banks. Be sure to include your financial projections for the next several years and any collateral you might have on hand. Taking the time to craft a comprehensive business plan will help make getting your distribution strategy business off the ground a much smoother process.
Get Your Domestic Property Broker License
Now that you have a business plan in place, it’s time to make sure you have the right licenses to operate. Regardless of whether you’re going it on your own or partnering with a franchise, you’re going to need to be, or at least become, a domestic property broker.
You’ll need to register with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and get your broker’s license before you can even think about becoming a supply chain consultant. Be sure to carefully review all the necessary certifications or licenses you need ahead of time.
Secure Funding for Your Supply Chain Strategy Business
You’ve built a business plan and gotten all the right licenses and certifications. It’s time to find the funds you need to build a foundation for your business. Depending on your situation, you may be ready to fund your business yourself. For many other entrepreneurs, this often means securing a small-business loan.
This is a big part of where your business plan comes into play. You’ll use your business plan to present your case to banks for your small-business loan. Even with a great business plan in place, loan approval can be easier said than done.
Working with the right franchise partner can go a long way to helping you get your foot in the door. A franchisor has the reputation and wherewithal to give you a reference or recommend a lender that can help you find the funds you need.
Find Your Equipment and Software
You can’t expect to run an effective or successful logistics business without the right tools. While you don’t need a fleet of vehicles or a fancy office, you will need a powerful computer and the latest supply chain software.
By partnering with the right supply chain strategy franchise, like Nexterus, you’ll have access to the latest and greatest in supply chain technology. With industry-standard software combined with its proprietary Fusion Center, Nexterus provides all the tools and technology its franchisees need to set themselves up for success.
Create a Marketing Plan and Get Your Message Out There
Once you’ve taken care of all the above steps, it’s time to start finding some customers. Of course, how are you going to find people if no one knows who you are? That’s why it pays to put together an effective marketing plan to get your message out.
It starts by identifying who your audience is and cultivating the right message to convert that audience into customers. Begin by developing a professional website to make a great first impression on potential clients. Your website should effectively explain who you are, what you do, and how potential customers can contact you.
When your website is complete, you should have a reliable, professional web page where clients can learn who you are and how to contact you. Now that you have a home base for your business on the internet, you can start marketing your services.
It takes time and patience to build a clientele, but as a wise person once said, “if you build it, they will come.”
Proceed Directly to “Go” With a Franchise Partner
As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into starting a logistics business. The good thing is that you don’t have to do it alone. When you partner with the right supply chain strategy franchise, you’re taking advantage of a trusted and established company that has already done many of these steps for you.
Partnering in a business to business (B2B) franchise with an established leader in the transportation management industry simplifies the journey to owning your own supply chain business. Supply chain franchising is an excellent way to get your foot in the door of transportation management. Partnering with a franchise provides potential supply chain consultants with the support they need to get their businesses off the ground.
This franchise support includes corporate training, an established and proven business model, and ongoing marketing efforts to drive the leads your business needs. Furthermore, franchisees receive access to approved suppliers and the latest supply chain management technologies to ensure our business is always ahead of the game.
Nexterus has been a leader in transportation management since 1946 and continues to innovate the way the industry operates. Learn how you can partner with a pillar of the supply chain management industry and start your franchise today.