To build and maintain trust with your clients it’s vital to recommend vendors you can know will deliver strong service and results. I’ve worked on the consultant, employer and now vendor-side of employee benefits and from every perspective the critical success factor is the consultant-vendor relationship.
Here are three keys to keep in mind for successful vendor programs:
- Be flexible: Everyone likes to win during negotiations. While some things are non-negotiable, avoid derailing the relationship by making everything non-negotiable. Your client must live with the vendor relationship and fostering a trust is important.
- Be collaborative: You're often the gatekeeper for the client. When you support your client as a full partner with the vendor it ensures the program will be well aligned and set up for success.
- Be generous with data: Data must flow both ways for a successful program and partnership. When data and performance discussions only happen annually they may not allow needed time to course-correct which reduces outcomes and ROI for your client.
A high performing vendor that delivers positive ROI to the benefit trend pleases your client and positions you as a valued partner. Learn how the broker for the City of Kirkland in Washington built a trusted vendor partnership that continues to deliver strong ROI.