Managing a contingent workforce program entails a lot of work and attention to detail. With so much effort involved in just keeping the program running, you may have difficulty finding time to make improvements
By using a vendor management system (VMS), you can gather all the information necessary to find new efficiencies. Data will help you paint a better picture of where you need to invest your time and effort to make your program more successful.
Whether you manage all of your organization’s vendors internally or opt for a hybrid service program like VectorVMS’s Shared Managed Services (SMS), this article provides you with infallible tips to boost your vendor management program.
1. Optimize Vendor Functionality in Your VMS
Looking across all of the vendors in your program, you’ll want to make sure they’re mapped appropriately in your VMS platform. Ensure that vendors that are region- or role-specific are receiving the right requisitions.
Have you configured your tiers? Consider how they’re set up:
- Are you sending requisitions to the top-performing vendors first, then opening them up to a second-tier after a certain period of time?
- Alternatively, are you only opening to a second tier if first-tier vendors are having difficulty finding candidates for the requisition?
- Are your vendors in the right tiers?
You can choose to define tiers for certain role classifications, by performance, or potentially find other ways to rank your vendors.
2. Reduce Program Costs
Knowing your vendors’ performance can provide insight into possible tenure or volume discounts. If you have the same worker returning for multiple jobs, some of the upfront processes won’t need to be repeated, potentially yielding a lower cost from your vendor. If a vendor doesn’t have to resend documentation, resubmit a background check, or even expend much effort sourcing a candidate for the requisition, they may be willing to provide a discount.
If you have any vendors that are supplying large volumes of candidates, they may also be willing to provide a volume discount. Additionally, if any of your vendors are submitting candidates found through direct sourcing technology, you can ask for a reduced markup.
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3. Identify Options for Underperforming Vendors
An important step is vendor rationalization, where you’ll need to make some tough decisions. Looking at your bottom-performing vendors, you’ll need to determine what next steps to take. Are they still supporting your program, are there ways they can be more supportive of your needs, or is it time to exit?
Some of your vendor scores may indicate that they need some additional training or support with the VMS platform. A provider like VectorVMS will provide several different opportunities for training, whether they’re live with an SMS Account Manager, or through an eLearning course with certification available to vendors.
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4. Communicate With Your Vendors
Relationships require communication, and your relationships with your vendors are no different. As important as tracking the data in your VMS is, working with your vendors directly is how you extract as much value from that data as possible. Here are three ways to keep in touch with your vendors:
Hold Regular Vendor Summits
Summits are a great venue for providing any updates to your program that may affect your vendors. Features new to the VMS, available training opportunities, and general reminders can be communicated in one succinct session.
Schedule Annual Performance Reviews
All of that data you collected? Share your vendor’s scores with them. This is a great way to discuss areas for improvement and to gather feedback about their experience with you. In a hybrid management program like SMS, your account manager can identify recommendations for your vendor as well as lead the meeting.
Invite Your Vendors to Participate in Your RFPs
When you need to find new vendors to support your program, consider including your existing vendors in your request for proposal (RFP). You may already have a vendor that supports another worker classification or department that you weren’t utilizing. An SMS account manager can help you develop a template for RFPs that can be distributed to your vendors.
The Best Partner to Improve Your Extended Workforce Program
Program improvement takes time, hard work, and patience. If you manage your program internally, advice from an external team of experienced professionals could help you advance your contingent labor program to the next level.
If you think your team needs help to identify new improvement opportunities and act on them, but you still want to keep your contingent workforce management in-house, VectorVMS’s Shared Managed Services (SMS) hybrid program is the best option for you. With SMS, you can continue to manage your program directly while having an expert team to back you up in the specific areas where you need additional help. You can reach out to our industry experts to assist you with tasks such as consultancy, everyday administration, data analysis, and more.
Are you looking for more tips on how to improve your vendor program? Download our ebook ‘3 Keys to Supplier Success for In-House Extended Workforce Programs’. You can also get in touch with our team to find out more about Shared Managed Services. We’ll be happy to help you build a successful program!
Meet the Expert
Teresa Hodges Bryant – Program Manager
With more than 25 years of experience in contingent workforce management, Teresa Hodges Bryant provides strategic consultation and program management for mid-market clients. As a member of our Strategic Services team, Teresa helps clients implement and optimize our vendor management system (VMS). She facilitates client-vendor partnerships, recommends program enhancements, and leads development workshops and other initiatives to help clients move from tactical to strategic program management. Connect with her on LinkedIn.