Today’s post is by Dave Wenig, Vice President of Sales and Services at SafeSourcing, Inc.
At SafeSourcing, we believe that any spend of any kind can be negotiated using our eProcurement RFx tools. That may seem pretty bold, but it’s true. We’ve negotiated everything from basic copy paper to private jet services, and all sorts of spend categories in between.
Along the way, we have encountered a certain objection from our customers that causes me to be concerned. From time to time, the customer will believe that they have selected a good or service that is unique and has no competition. They have selected the best of the best and there would be no point in trying to source an alternative or attempt to get a better price.
I appreciate that the product you have selected may be better than some of the alternatives. Or, just as importantly, you may perceive that the product you have selected may be the best. The same can be true of services. You might feel that your current vendor goes above and beyond the scope of their work to perform for you. That may be true, but there’s no reason why another vendor could not do the same.
What I recommend in these cases is to invite well-qualified competitors to participate in an RFx Event against the vendor that you prefer. Let them position their competitive product or service against the product or service that you like and let all of the vendors compete to offer the best price and overall value in a live format. Perhaps once the RFx Event has completed, you will still select the vendor of your choice. It is very likely that if you do, the pricing negotiated will be significantly lower than what you had previously been quoted.
In one recent case, a customer was absolutely set on purchasing a fleet of trucks from a particular manufacturer that was all to include a customized set of accessories and equipment. In the customer’s mind, there really was no other option. That said, they still agreed to keep an open mind and not close the door on a potential negotiation. This was very wise of them. As a result of allowing SafeSourcing to negotiate their truck pricing, the customer attained a 15% price reduction on top of the best pricing they had received from the manufacturer they preferred. Better still, they had options and an opportunity to get more savings from other vendors and they had all of the details they needed to decide if any of those options would work for them.
In that case, there were many ways for the customer to declare victory with a seven-digit savings figure. They never would have been able to attain that savings if they hadn’t kept an open mind and created the opportunity for the savings to occur. If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.