Don't Reinvent the Wheel, Just Realign It

After a few short quarters in the contingent workforce management (CWM) space, the metrics used on scorecards to evaluate enterprise/supplier relationships become pretty straight forward to all those involved. It is expected that performance is evaluated upon submittal, quality, and price factors which is all meaningful data, no doubt. After twenty years in the industry, though, it is still surprising that scorecards continue to leave out one key piece of data that quantifies the contribution to overall program success made by each supplier: the “Trust Metric.”

Before diving into the idea of a “Trust Metric,” here’s some perspective of the history of the scorecard. There has certainly been a meaningful evolution of scorecards over the last decades: three examples come to mind:

1.       Performance Ranking - originally, it was rare for supplier performance to be ranked against one another. Scorecards now serve as a reliable value add and reality check for supplier communities.

2.       Performance Goals - the inclusion of performance targets have also come to be a standard metric providing clarification around who should be doing what, when, where.

3.       Supplier Classifications – Niche vs General Supplier status often determines baseline performance ranking and goals with the aim to level the playing field for the varied supplier community.

As the industry continues to shift to a more collaborative and integrated supply chain, there is an increasingly obvious gap in this standard approach. That is, the skill and willingness in which a supplier partners with the program management teams behind the scenes. Is the supplier selling their services and candidates outside of the visibility of the program team? Is the supplier consistently maxing out or exceeding requested bill rates with little feedback to the program team as to why they are doing so?

All roads in a successful CWM program lead back to Trust. And that’s Trust with a capital “T.”

It is proven time and again that the deeper the relationships we establish with our clients and MSP partners, the broader relationships they become through the years across verticals and the number of programs we support. Here’s how the depth of a partnership can be captured and incorporated in a way that it is not being captured in today’s scorecards:

1.       Program Team Contribution – ensure that the team responsible for managing the daily operations contributes their perspective on the scorecard. Quantify how easy it is to partner with and how much they enjoy working with the supplier.

2.       Program Partnership – monitor, log, and report if/how many instances of the supplier selling outside of the program team’s visibility occur on a quarterly basis.

3.       Market insight – rate the supplier’s participation in Hiring Manager calls for hard to fill requisitions, response to requests for market insight on competitive rates, and transparency around not being able to fill a given requisition and why.

4.       Weight Appropriately – each program operates within a unique organization culture and at the end of the day, values certain metrics over others.

Industry stakeholders and visionaries continue the search for alternative tools and processes in an effort of continuous process improvement. As it turns out, we do not have to recreate the wheel to establish a more robust environment for CWM: continue to leverage the standard metrics captured in today’s scorecards with the addition of the “Trust Metric.”

“You don’t have to reinvent the wheel every day. Today you will do what you did yesterday, and tomorrow you will do what you did today. Eventually you will get somewhere.” Chuck Close