January 7, 2014
Contractors, and any supplier who provides services on your behalf, will be seen as a representative of your company in the eyes of your customers. As such it is very important to make sure that they have been appropriately vetted and fully understand what is expected of them.
When instructing a contractor it is always best that they:
- Have a clear idea of your company vision, standards and ethos
- Have clear service-level agreements, turnaround times and a feedback processes
- Have internal methods for checking quality of the works/services carried out
- Know the penalties for non-delivery or substandard work
- Attend regular meetings with you to review the relationship
- Have established a robust payment procedure
A contractor should be willing to meet the above criteria as, after all, it’s not good business to employ someone who is unable or unwilling to meet the needs and standards of your business.
When dealing with contractors failing to have robust measures in place may put the reputation of your business at risk and affect customer satisfaction levels. Putting into place defined criteria will make the working relationship much easier from the beginning as, while the above conditions may seem a bit strict, they are there to make sure that the level of service your customers receive matches what you promise and they expect. It is always good to remember that contractors are partners and that you are building a good working relationship with them for your mutual benefit.
When instructing a new contractor it is always best to get a good understanding of their business, operation and ethos; as well as seeing first hand examples of their work. It’s just not good enough to take their word in regards to the competency of their work. Remember that a contractor with the lowest price, or is the nicest to deal with, may not necessarily be the best.
You need to make sure that anyone working on your behalf is going to deliver an amazing service, a high quality of work and be reliable. While a building a great working relationship is nice you should always feel confident when instructing a contractor, if you don’t believe they can handle the job then don’t give it to them.
In essence you need to know what you want, be able to communicate this clearly and not settle for inferior quality services or products. Your supplier or contractor may genuinely not understand that they are not delivering what you require otherwise. Sometimes you will have to pay more to get this but in the long run, with your reputation and customers’ happiness at stake, it will be worth having the very best in your contact book.