Do Your Providers Really Add Value?
Obviously, an important question! Does your Relocation service provider truly do everything they can to deliver the best service, evolve your program, and make your life easier?
This is one of a series of questions that I ask Global Mobility professionals who seek my advice when evaluating if they will go to RFP or retain their existing provider.
To help people make educated decisions there is a need to understand the value of their existing provider and if better value can be achieved by a change! I take an approach that will look beyond the program metrics that a client can analyse. There are a series of questions which provide a deep insight into the strategic value a provider delivers and importantly how they value their client!
Based on my years of experience the following are examples of the questions that I ask clients to help them with their evaluation.
- How often does the provider bring new ideas and services that are relevant to them? Or do they find out that other approaches and solutions exist from other sources, for example from new entrants to the market? It may be that new trends or entrants to the market will provide an aspect of the service presently being provided by the existing relocation provider, more effectively or at a lower cost. So even though a solution may deliver value to a client, it could reduce the profits of the relocation service provider so they may not be keen to share the solution with their clients!
Depending on what new solutions and trends a provider brings to you shows if they are actively listening to you, aware of new industry challenges and solutions. Most importantly it demonstrates if they genuinely believe in doing what is best for you their client, to deliver the best value and cost by bringing such trends and solutions to you!
- Relocation companies typically have consulting practices with exceptionally talented people to assist their clients. They provide a much-needed resource for the Global Mobility community with numerous articles, white papers, seminars on all manner of mobility related topics. But are these talented people engaged with you as a resource to focus on your goals and objectives, step in with solutions when challenges arise? Or are they only used to generate the articles, white papers, blogs that get sent to you? Yes, a professionally written article on a subject of interest is useful, but the companies who utilise their consultancy talent to consult directly with you to achieve solutions are really delivering a higher level of value to you.
- Take time to stand back from the day to day and ask key questions to determine what strategic value a provider has for you.
- Speak to your network, what are their experiences with the same or other providers so you can benchmark.
- Evaluate and understand what provider value you already have before moving towards an RFP.
- If the evaluation confirms there is low strategic value in a provider, then do not hold back and plan to make a change!
Written by Paul Barnes, Director, Inspire Global Mobility Consulting.
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