Selecting a new transportation vendor can be a complicated process. It takes in depth research, thoughtful planning, and evaluation for a successful switching process. The last thing anyone wants is to take the time and energy to find a new vendor only to receive the same results. This process should not be rushed. One of our previous posts gives tips on how to switch vendors smoothly so your business can operate smoothly during these new changes while finding you the best vendor for your shipping practices.
After the new vendor is selected, there is still some learning and training to get your vendor comfortable with your business. They need to learn how your business works and vice versa. Once the new vendor has settled in with your shipping needs, it is time for an evaluation. Making sure they are living up to expectations allows companies to hold their vendors accountable.
Vendor Evaluation Process
Evaluation is an easy solution to keep vendors in line. Trusting a new vendor can be difficult and holding them accountable through an evaluation can begin to build that foundation. Vendors shortcomings are not all visible, and usually the ones that get overlooked are what hurts companies efficiency and cost savings the most. While the new vendor is providing shipping solutions and reasonable rates, are they doing everything is their power to provide the best ones?
With that being said, we are sharing some areas that should be evaluated that often times gets unnoticed. Make sure your new vendor is standing behind everything they promised and you are getting what you originally signed up for.
Promising one thing but not delivering is one of the biggest frustrations in the industry. With all the time crunches and deadlines in this industry, not meeting expectations can really hurt a company’s relationship with their customers. Vendors are primarily there to provide companies with shipping solutions that run smoothly and efficiently to meet deadlines.
Ask yourself, “Are they meeting all the expectations you both agreed upon?”. Being on the same page with your vendor about what is expected from both parties increases communication and improvement. Sometimes things can go sideways that vendors have no control over, and that does not always mean they are not meeting expectations. It’s how they try to fix it, or what they do from there that shows their dedication to get back on track.
Good communication is not just about how much you communicate with your vendor, but what you choose to communicate about. A vendor shouldn’t leave you in the dark, but they also shouldn’t bog you down with questions they could answer themselves or details that are irrelevant.
A way someone communicates talks big volumes about a person. Are they eager to talk to you about what is happening, or are they holding the hard conversations until the last minute? Things start going wrong once there is bad communication skills, and how far does it have to go before a situation happens that can’t be undone?
Effective/ Productive Shipping Solutions
Transportation vendors are there to ideally do one thing – provide shipping solutions for your shipping needs. Of course it is not as simple as it sounds with all the documents, regulations, and limitations involved in the making. But what sets goods vendors aside from the rest, is the eagerness to find the most effective and productive shipping solutions.
Evaluate whether your new vendor is working to get unique shipping solutions. You selected them because they stood out to you. Make sure they are still giving you what you want and not just putting you down at the bottom of their list to deal with.
Victim of Price Creep
Being a victim of price creep never feels goods. Even if you have built a good relationship with your new vendor, it is always good to make sure the trust is not being broken. Evaluating your new vendor shows them that you are not here to get taken advantage of. Staying of top of your vendor and their actions leaves little room for a price creep.
So how can you tell if you are a victim of price creep? Compare with other forwarders. Comparing rates does not just happen when you want a switch. It is always good to have those connections to make sure your vendor is providing correct and reasonable rates for your shipments.
Having a good transportation vendor holds a lot of power within your company. They are they ones figuring out the logistics for your shipments which in the end can be a main source of cost savings and efficiency. Evaluating your vendor shows you care. This sets the standard high for vendors to be successful.
After evaluation, you might like the results you got or maybe this is not what you signed up for. Is it time for another switch or maybe you just need to hold your new vendor accountable to meet expectations. Our team at Interlog USA would love to talk and help you with any questions you might have!