Ultimate guide to supplier strategy and enablement
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THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO SUPPLIER STRATEGY AND ENABLEMENT
Understanding our partnership philosophy and approach to engaging and maintaining a fit for purpose workforce supplier network.
Partnership means different things to different people. To us it means a mutually beneficial relationship, in which both parties transparently work together to achieve a common goal. Not false promises of endless possibilities.
We have an extensive in-house sourcing capability via our specialist recruitment business. This means we only engage suppliers in areas where we know we are not best placed, or best equipped, to source candidates for our clients to maintain the optimum level of programme performance.
By strategically and appropriately leveraging the power of our workforce supply partners we know we will deliver a best in class MSP solution to our clients.
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The whole is bigger than the sum of the parts
Process efficiency, compliance, cost savings and automation are all foundational reasons why an organisation will consider engaging an MSP. But by far the strongest reason is because they believe the MSP can source talent better than they can themselves.
Tripartite collaboration is key to a successful programme and this means that the client organisation, the MSP provider and the workforce supply network will all be walking in the same direction. This can only happen if the programme is designed around enablement rather than control.
If you want your MSP to enable rather than control the supply chain, then the following factors are very important:
The most basic ingredient is trust
All parties need to believe that the other parties will not try to take advantage of them if given the opportunity. Successful relationships in any walk of life are based on a meeting of minds and mutual benefit. Integrity is really important, and it is the foundation upon which you build the trust you need to make the relationship successful. Wherever possible clients should allow their MSP the liberty to do what they do best. Hold them accountable for the outcome and resist the temptation to micro manage how they arrive at the result.
Always look beyond the transactional relationship
Not with all suppliers, that’s just not possible, but with those you consider strategic. Your MSP must be viewed as a strategic partner. This means having a mind-set whereby you are looking to create as much value as possible from the relationship. How do we take cost out of the supply chain is not the same as I need you to drop your price or margin? Procurement stakeholders need to strike a balance between efficiency and effectiveness. If supplier margins are squeezed to a level where they cannot make a reasonable return, corners will be cut somewhere, which will always negatively impact the customer sooner or later.
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Our Supplier Strategy and Enablement framework has six steps
We understand that no two clients or MSP programmes are the same. It is therefore important that we design a Workforce Supplier Partner strategy that is appropriately tailored for each client. These strategies will need to underpin the overall programme design and implementation activities but also be dynamically adaptable, so we can continually evolve the value we deliver to our clients.
Our strategy design process follows 8-stages:
1. Define the scope and objectives;
2. Understand the context;
3. Map the current situation (As is);
4. Define the problem/improvement opportunity (Gap analysis);
5. Explore new ideas;
6. Design the solution (To be);
7. Build the business case and 8. Implement
For new contract implementations all eight stages would be followed in numerical order. For existing contracts, the process should start at stage 3, then stages 1-2, then 4-8.
Identify, Assess and Select
The Workforce supply market is dynamic. The same supplier is likely to perform differently depending on the mandate they have within the client and the operating culture of the client’s hiring community. As an experienced MSP we know how important it is to stay current with all the significant changes in the marketplace and understand which suppliers will offer the greatest breadth and depth of talent capability and customer experience. This especially includes tracking those suppliers who may support us in more than one programme.
We identify and maintain a long list of potential Supplier Partners, through a combination of research and data analysis, which we then assess through quantitative and qualitative analysis. From this qualified list, we then provide a recommendation to you to select the most appropriate Supplier Partners which will be appropriately split by their ability to provide to each individual Service Recipient and worker category. We will typically seek to engage expert suppliers rather than generalists who are able to provide high quality candidates across all sectors. This list of suppliers will be continually assessed and monitored to track supplier performance and act accordingly, ensuring that our clients hiring managers receive the most efficient service possible from the supply chain.
Accredit and Onboard
All MSP’s want to work with the highest performing suppliers therefore we need to convince the supply market that our MSP programmes are the most attractive to be part of. The way we try to do that is by ensuring that we work with them in the most efficient and professional way from the outset.
Once Workforce Supplier Partners have been onboarded within an MSP programme then they need to be enabled to perform at their best by cultivating clear, open and equitable relationships.
Measure and Develop
As well as setting clear expectations for the relationship and developing a robust two-way communication strategy, the other key element of success lies in tracking and enhancing performance. High performing Supply Partners should be celebrated and rewarded. Poor performance must be addressed and rectified.
The final element in the framework is to make sure that we, in tandem with our Supply Partners, successfully comply with all appropriate compliance and legislative requirements.
We know that when you strip everything away an MSP is only as good as the talent it can provide. The best process and the best technology mean nothing if the right talent cannot be found and supplied. How an MSP engages and nurtures its supplier relationships is critical to success…and failure.
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This is why we place so much importance on getting this right
If you share our partnership ethos and are interested in becoming a supplier partner to one of our programmes, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know:
- Your registered company name
- Where your company is geographically headquartered
- Your name, role, business email address and contact telephone numbers
- Your company website address
You will then be contacted by one of our partner team to explain the full registration process.