As a firm, it’s important that you are continually inspecting your systems internally, to ensure that they are both optimized and verified regarding the best protocols of cutting-edge operation.
However, to the extent that you can, it’s also important to inspect the services that are exterior to your firm, yet connected to it. We may consider a supplier to be defined this way, but not all suppliers are alike.
For example, the firm that delivers raw materials for your manufacturing process are often different in character and relationship to the firm that supplies your office internet or managed IT services.
Measuring the competency of your outsourced services, then, is essentially important, because only then can you choose the most competitive option.
This can also help you potentially adhere to the best practice if you hope to construct part of your department like this internally, as if the wise man learns from those around him, so does the wise business.
In the following article we’ll teach you practical methods to help you understand if you’re getting the best service or not, and how this can be a sustainable part of your business decision making:
#1 Best Practice
It’s important to understand the best practice of said suppliers or service being provided to you because when you know the standards they have to hit, you can also verify that they are working to code.
For example, asking for the compliance information regarding machine safety can be important when selecting an outsourced production line to work with, helping you potentially construct your products without hidden mistakes.
It may also be worthwhile to ensure that you educate yourself as to the common standards required for an industry to be effective. For example, the use of an accurate anchor text is important for SEO content production to link back to your services correctly, and depending on the anchor text you choose, different results can come back to you.
The best outfits will be clear and even wish to educate you on what their best practice is, not so they can hide from you, but so they can work with you on every single level to ensure they can deliver the best service. This in itself is the sign of great service to use.
#2 Common Pitfalls
Every working process will have its pitfalls, and as far as that is concerned, you are certain to experience a couple. Thankfully, this needn’t seem like a negative connotation or something you should shy away from, as education is always key.
Consider the issues that you may have to experience with an outsourced service, and measure that against their worth. For example, it might be that their invoicing often fails to break down services rendered, and this can be confusing for your team to try and stay clear with. However, if the services are always on time, well-practiced and carefully delivered, leeway may be granted here.
It may also be the mark of a worthwhile service or supplier if they take time to avoid those pitfalls. For example, certain brands of fish may need to be refrigerated at a different temperature than others, or remain as fresh as possible before delivery to a kitchen.
As a head chef, ensuring this need is both understood, communicated and followed, you may have an excellent supplier on your hands, a firm that knows and respects the granular detail required.
#3 Compare Services
While it can be important to stay loyal to a supplier or outsourced service that routinely delivers in your time frame, there is no harm in researching what else is on the market and seeing what else they could offer you.
It might be that so far, you have been gaining your firm’s merchandising equipment through a certain supplier. Perhaps they screenprint t-shirts with your brand name and do so reliably, with a turnaround of one month from the date of your order.
This is going well and good, and the supply of the t-shirts is always reliable if a little long. Customers report no errors with the items they receive.
However, it might be that a different competitor is not only offering a two-week timeframe (perfect for restocking your stores should they sell out, or should you make the impromptu decision to attend an expo), but they also offer a specialized set of t-shirt cannons to provide big laughs at your trade event, while also being courteous to your new business by giving you a repeat order discount of 30%.
Businesses can too often think that they need to stick with one supplier or service only, when in reality, playing the competition to try and gain a better deal is always a worthwhile idea.
After all, if having to refine your output and stay competitive is what you yourself have to do as a business to define yourself from your competition, why shouldn’t you expect this same level of practical discourse from your suppliers?
#4 Bang For Buck
Sometimes, it’s not about how great the service is, or how cheap something was, but how valuable it would have been when thought of as an investment.
For example, a restaurant can stock some of the most impressive mushrooms flown in from Japan that morning, but if it costs half the expected profit of the dining room that evening to stock them for three days, odds are most sensible chefs would find something a little cheaper.
For example, it might be that service allows you to sign up to a more premium version of their offering, but in terms of the price hike and the value-added, it may not be worth taking up that deal.
It can be hard to completely tie your investment to a total dollar amount this will afford you in return, and so measuring bang for the buck in terms of time invested, reliability gained, a value considered, problems or no problems, as well as the growth of goodwill, may be worthwhile.
It’s the equivalent of someone heading to Starbucks instead of another coffee shop because they know that with enough investment, they will get their tenth coffee free.
With this advice, you ‘re sure to measure the competency of your outsourced services reliably.