When you start a new business, your principal concern is making sure that you actualize your business plan. However, the efficacy of your plan also depends on the service of other businesses. If, for instance, you run an ecommerce business, then you need to find an ideal fulfillment company. If you get a beleaguered one, then their internal problems will affect your business. Your customer’s orders won’t ship out on time and you’ll have to deal with numerous customer complaints.
Since your business depends on other businesses to provide the services you need to run your business, it’s imperative that you make the best possible choices.
Develop A Selection Process
Here are some ideas to help you make good decisions:
You will need a reliable Internet Service Provider. In order to choose, you have to decide what type of internet connection type you want. Do you want DSL, cable, or fiber? Next, you have to decide on bandwidth speed. The larger your staff, the more bandwidth your business will need. You’ll also have to consider if you need to download large files, use VoIP phones, watch streaming videos, etc. Once you’ve got a clear idea about what you need, then it’s simply a question of finding a reputable provider that offers the features you need and offers optimum performance, which is measured by metrics related to network availability, latency ms, and packet loss.
Speaking of telecommunications, you might want to provide entertainment channels if your business has an employee gym, a waiting room, a bar, or an executive lounge. Or, you may just want to create an above-average break room. Choose DIRECTV if you want over 100 channels of the best television shows, news, sports, movies, and music.
- Marketing and Advertising Agency
Unless you are planning on doing your own in-house marketing, you will probably need to hire a team of experts to help you to market your products or services.
With so many marketing agencies available, each with their well-designed story about why they are the best, how do you choose?
Here is a simple criterion to use:
Will you be able to get along with people they assign to work with you? Once you pick a marketing agency, it will assign certain staff members to work intimately with you to get to know your business and develop the best promotions for it. It’s important that you find people that you will enjoy working with to grow your business. If there is a personality conflict for any reasons, your marketing will suffer.
- Good Example
Do they market their own business well? Do they set a good example? Observe how they market their own agency. Look at their website, their collateral material, their offices, and any other cues. Are they doing for themselves what they say that they can do for you?
- Processes and Proof
Has the agency developed an effective series of processes to deploy when they launch a marketing campaign or do they have a more ad hoc approach? If they have developed a process, do they have a list of clients who have benefited from their processes?
- Accounting and Bookkeeping
The best way to choose an accounting and bookkeeping service is by reputation. Speak to business owners of other small or medium scale companies in your industry who have used their services.
- Human Resource Development
Since human resources is a data-driven aspect of business, the more technologically up-to-date an HR business, the better the service they will be able to provide for you. You want to outsource to a service that understands the importance of analytic capabilities.
- Event Organizations
Essentially, you will be working with a consultant who has built a reputation for planning events and organize meetings. Decide based on experience and client testimonials.
Avoid A Trial and Error Approach
Often, little thought is paid to choosing a service provider. You might choose a service provider based on a recommendation from a friend or in response to an advertisement. This casual, almost random, method of choosing a service provider will cause you all sorts of unnecessary problems. You can’t afford the cost of picking and choosing service providers on a trial and error basis. By first listing out exactly what you need and then researching a few top providers, you will have a much better chance of picking the right service provider the first time.