If there’s one thing workers have in common, regardless of the size of company, the industry, the location, the budget, it’s that they are increasingly being tasked to do more with less. They’re trying to find more time in the day. They’re fighting burnout even while putting in longer hours. Saving time that can be better spent on something more productive is a key priority for most people in today’s workforce. And though you may think of your suppliers and vendors as just providers of products or services, you should also be thinking of how they can help you be more productive. Here are 5 ways you should expect your vendor to boost your productivity:
Flexible buying – Who has time to jump through hoops just to get what you need to keep your business going? Whether you’re more comfortable buying through a mobile app, website, integration with a third-party interface, by phone or even by fax, it’s important that your supplier provide you with options that fit your schedule and your buying preferences. Like to shop in person? Take advantage of opportunities with vendors who have brick-and-mortar locations and the ability to shop online and pick up in store.
Proactive solutions – It’s easy to get supplies—it’s harder to take the time to get a broad view of your company’s needs and figure out where you can make changes for better efficiency, quality and savings. Your supplier should be taking that weight off your shoulders and that task off your to-do list by using their expertise and experience with companies like yours to make recommendations on how to get the best value from your purchasing.
User support – Whether your office has 20 people or 200, the supplies you buy for your business impact everyone in your office. It would take an army of you to make sure each and every one of your employees or colleagues are buying the right things from the right place. Your supplier can—and should—help with this, assisting with program adoption communications, providing end user support, and giving you insight and with reporting and visibility into where your supply dollars are going.
Robust website – There’s a lifecycle to supplying your office with the products and services you need to keep it running smoothly, and it goes well beyond an initial purchase. From ordering to reordering to approvals and returns, your supplier should make it easy and efficient for you to do what needs to be done, all at the touch of a button. Need to process a return? Do it online. Shopping for things you order frequently? Tools like online shopping lists, ink and toner finder, and recently ordered items modules all save valuable time, and you should expect your suppliers to invest in the online technology that helps you.
Customized program – One size fits all only saves time for the supplier—what does it do for you? Your vendors should know your company’s needs and goals inside and out and help tailor your relationship accordingly. This could mean anything from customized pricing to helping build a standards program for your needs like technology or furniture. When you’re getting exactly what you need from your vendor and not having to weed through what you don’t need, it’s not just a time-saver—it’s a stress-reliever, as well.
There are countless things your suppliers can do to help your office run more smoothly… but we know you’re strapped for time and these 5 are important. So what are you waiting for? Ask your supplier how they can help you boost your productivity.