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6 do’s and don’ts when hiring a third-party supplier

When working on a project, there are often a number of different people involved, including third-party suppliers. These could be freelancers or contractors or anyone who has the skills you require to get the job done. And so when hiring people for your project, it’s really important you get the right person for the job. Hiring the wrong person can create real setbacks in your schedule and in your budget!

Hiring people can feel like a lengthy process, and sometimes when you’re on a tight deadline, it can be easy to go with the first person you meet, but it doesn’t have to feel like such a chore when you know the things to look out for. To assist you in making the hiring process as quick and easy as possible, we’re bringing you our six do’s and don’ts for hiring an aligned fit.

DO your research

As we mentioned, it can be easy to go with the first person who seems to fit the criteria for what you need for your project, especially when you have a tight deadline. But taking your time to do your research really does pay off in the long run. And better still, get recommendations! Recommendations really are one of the best ways to create connections and find people who have similar attitudes and values to you.

When looking for people who offer the product or service you’re looking for, be sure to look not just at their skills and qualifications, but their previous client work, reviews, and general presentation of themselves. Taking a holistic view of a person will help you make a better judgment on whether that person is right for your team.

DON’T be afraid to ask questions

We can’t know everything about somebody just from a CV, portfolio, or website, so don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you need until you feel comfortable with the information you’ve gathered. Third-party suppliers expect questions, and they welcome them. A working relationship is a two-way street, so you should have questions for them and you should expect questions back. That way, you will both be able to come to a decision on whether the project at hand is the right fit for both of you.

In terms of what you should ask them, this is really down to you and what you feel is important in your decision-making, but try to go deeper than simply asking them about their skills and experience. Asking them about previous projects they worked on and why they wanted to work on them will help you go deeper into what they are passionate about which will give you an indicator as to whether they’d be a good fit for what you’re looking for!

DO meet face to face

Even in the era of online working, meeting face to face, whether that be in-person or on a video call, is a great way to get a feel for any third parties you might wish to work with. Once you’ve done your research, asked any initial questions, the next step is to meet that person face-to-face and see how you gel on an energetic level. It’s easy for someone to make themselves look good on paper, and so this is a great test of compatibility by getting in a room together (virtual or otherwise) to chat and see what’s what.

Again, when you meet face to face this is a good opportunity to ask questions beyond the standard skills and experience. Talk about the work and what is important to them, and share your attitudes and values with them so you can gauge their response in real-time. If you’ve got a few options and you’re not sure who to go with, a face-to-face meeting is usually the ultimate decider.

Of course, when you’re looking for third parties to collaborate with, you’re going to want to get a good deal. Freelancers, contractors and anyone else offering products and services will always have different prices, and it’s important that you explore your options in regard to different quotes.

Be sure to give yourself at least 3-5 different options to consider, and ensure the supplier gives you a full and detailed breakdown of their costs. Review these costs and then go back and ask as many questions as you need, and a little haggling never hurt anyone. Negotiation is expected, but don’t push too much! Respect people’s prices and be honest about your budget and what you’re looking to achieve with that money.

DON’T let price be your guide

If you want to achieve great results, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is letting money be your decider. Of course, you want to spend your money wisely, but that doesn’t mean that the cheapest option will be the best value, nor does it mean the most expensive will be the best quality. So try not to let price influence you too much (although we know this can be tricky sometimes).

Instead, try to focus on making a well-rounded decision based on everything you’ve learned about the supplier, including the price, to give you a much more accurate understanding of the value and quality you can expect to receive.

DO collaborate!

Once you’ve made your decision and you’ve hired the person for the job, be sure to nurture the relationship by collaborating as much as possible. Your team should feel included and should provide equal input to the final outcome, so rather than just dictate what you want and need, be open to suggestions, ideas, and insight from your third parties. After all, the reason you’ve hired them is likely due to their skills and expertise and what they can bring to the table, so make sure you create an environment for them to thrive on your project.

Better collaboration means better outcomes, as it creates clearer communication, clarity on goals and outcomes, and teamwork that will make working on your project a dream from start to finish.

Keep these six points in mind when sourcing a team for your next big project and you’re bound to see great collaboration and results! For more tips on this, you can also check out our guide to finding, hiring, and working with freelancers and contractors.

Want to learn more about how WorkSavvy can help you work with third-party suppliers more smoothly? Register your interest or book a demo with us today!

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