Companies of every size must rely on vendors for HR supplies, software, training supplies, and needs like insurance and banking. After the perfect vendors have been found, it’s important to build and maintain relationships with the vendors but prepare for eventualities like the vendor going out of business. The following are a few tips that can help you optimize your relationship with HR vendors.
Communicate Goals and Information
Communicating with vendors to share your goals and other information may help them to better serve your needs. There is no need to over share, but talking with vendors about things like upcoming promotions, forecasts for business needs, changing office hours, and location changes may help them to be prepared to make changes in order to keep up with your changing needs. It is important to consider what types of information may help vendors to help you in order to keep things running smoothly.
Be Loyal, but Not To a Fault
Loyalty is an important part of any vendor relationship, and you should be sure to look to the vendors with whom you have good relationships when your needs change if they can help to meet those needs. Doing this will often evoke loyalty from the vendor, inspiring them to push business your way and sometimes offer discounts or other perks. However, you should always evaluate the competition to make sure that the prices you are paying are reasonable and that the vendor is doing their best to keep your company operating as well as possible.
Keep Up Relationships with a Variety of Vendors
Your main vendors are the most important relationships to maintain, but the smaller vendors shouldn’t be ignored. Make sure that you are ordering from them and communicating with them every so often to maintain the relationship. Keeping smaller vendors around can be very helpful if something happens to one of the larger vendors or if your needs suddenly change and you must rely more heavily on one of the smaller vendors.
Talk Strategy with Vendors
Vendors can sometimes supply information or offer your company discounts or assistance that will help to optimize operations-if they understand what you need. If the product or service that they supply for your organization relates closely to something that is being discussed in a meeting or something new that is about to kick off, it may be helpful to invite a vendor representative to the meeting or discuss the upcoming changes in depth. Bringing a vendor in to strategize can really solidify a relationship while providing your company with a fresh perspective.
Consider the Vendors’ Perspective
It is important to try to see things from vendors’ perspectives to maintain the best relationship possible. If you are constantly demanding that prices be cut or that things be done at a certain time or in a certain way, it may hurt the vendor’s ability to make money. If the relationship is having a negative impact on the vendor’s business, they may stop providing service or begin to struggle financially, which will not be good for your business.