Contract Logistics Solution Design Document

In any project involving outsourcing of warehousing operations, setting up a Distribution Center or Managing Plant logistics, if the project involves setting up a dedicated facility for the customer and the size of the project is huge; such project requires detailed attention and work from both parties. The buyer would have to detail the requirements in the RFQ document, and the 3PL service provider would have to work on designing a detailed solution.

The RFQ response document holds the key to showcasing the proposed solution and the vendors understanding of the requirement and capability.

In this article we proposed to cover the components of the solution design document in brief.

A response document to an RFQ will normally contain the following sections:

  • Covering Letter with List of Enclosures
  • Solution Design
  • Case Study of 3PL’s other works of experience in the similar industry with photos or video if possible.
  • Company Profile, Management Structure and financial information as requested in the RFQ,
  • Project Implementation information detailing project team, project sponsor and management team, proposed timelines and schedule, etc.
  • Pricing
  • Terms and Conditions of offer
  • Any identified deviations from the RFQ assumptions or requirements with justification
  • Any other information supporting the solution design.

Solution Design Document

Solution Design Document is the main part of a response document, which details the solution proposed matching with the requirements of the buyer.

Solution design generation is driven by Business Development team with the active involvement of a solution design team. The solution design team would have the required competence, engineering capability, and tools to prepare the design. Functional experts or Subject Matter Experts and operational experts are brought in to collaborate with solution design wherever required.

Once solution design is ready, it is reviewed by operations team and IT besides costing team for internal acceptance and approval before being submitted to the client.

A solution design normally consists of:

  • General:

    - Detailing business process, requirement and assumptions as understood from RFQ.
    - Inventory analysis and other data analysis and resultant assumptions made in design
  • Proposed Location:

    - Explain details about the selection of proposed site, facility drawing, layout and structural details including height, the number of bays, etc.
  • Proposed Infrastructure:

    - Proposed Racking and Internal Layout Design with explanation on storage type selection, number of locations, total storage capacity, etc. including technical details of the racking.
    - Material Handling equipment and details.
    - All other infrastructure and equipment details.
  • IT :

    - Proposed System/Application with technical information including possible enhancement requirements to support business operations.
    - Outline benefits of using the system and how it fits into buyer’s requirement
    - System and network architecture design map with Document interface requirements and other technical points relevant to enable interaction between 3PL and buyer’s systems.
    - Hardware and Network plan
    - IT infrastructure specification and list of equipment including RF equipment, labeling and printing machines, desktops, Laptops, etc.
    - Detailed implementation plan if possible.
  • Process/Operations:

    - Process document should provide complete overview of the internal operations process combined with systems and physical processes. This document should be able to give a clear picture to the reader and enable him to visualize the entire process within the facility.
  • Human Resource:

    - List of total manpower assumption worked out
    - Proposed operations management structure
    - Escalation Route and structure
    - Details on how recruitments will be managed for the project
    - Brief on company policy on hiring, recruitment and HR management practices
  • Other Information:

    - EHS, Safety & Security Management plan with details.
    - Maintenance Plan
    - Disaster Recovery Plan, including IT recovery.
    - Quality Policy and Quality systems implementation plan

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