CapRelo Blog

Supply Chain Management: Supplier Certification

Posted by George Herriage on Mon, Dec 23, 2013

Relocation is typically a detailed and complex task. To ensure successful employee relocations you must be comfortable with the quality and quality control of all suppliers involved in the process.

The number of suppliers in your supply chain depends on the volume of different features in your relocation policy. Whether you have a basic, no frills program or a complete relocation package with many “bells and whistles,” you must ensure that all components are quality suppliers.

Find out more about managing your relocation supplier network in our free article.

You should certify and approve your suppliers carefully. After certification, you then need to manage your supply chain just as diligently as your operations department manages its supply chain for products and services.

How to Certify Vendors

There is no cast in stone supplier certification method. You can create your own benchmarks and standards. However, there are some proven suggestions for your certification features:

  • Performance track record, both current and historical.
  • Existence of reasonable contract provisions.
  • Suppliers evidencing outstanding customer service—you and your company are their real customer, not the transferee.
  • Examine evidence of supplier financial stability to avoid money-generated internal vendor problems that spill over to their relocation services—which then morph into your company’s problems.
  • Price of services.

Supply Chain Management

It is imperative that you manage your relocation supply chain to maintain high quality services, even after you have certified your suppliers. While many things are outside of your direct control, managing your supply chain should include the following items, at a minimum:

  • Create or employ metrics that allow you to measure your suppliers’ performance in easy-to-understand results.
  • Rate the availability, knowledge, and expertise of your (and your transferees’) contact people assigned to your company.
  • Evaluate the consistency and “continuity” of multiple relocations for all components in your supply chain.
  • Rate the ease of working with and professionalism of your preferred suppliers.
  • Employ quality control procedures that help ensure the acceptable performance of your relocation program suppliers.
  • Establish an internal audit checklist to measure supplier performance.

This is not a “one size fits all” requirement. You should develop your own metrics and evaluation system for each supplier, since they perform different services. Just consider the difference between carriers transporting household goods versus the services of real estate brokers who help transferees find new homes.

You’ll need a different checklist to certify and manage your supply chain vendors. However, there is no must-include measurement tool list. You can create your quality control, certification, and supply chain management benchmarks however you want.

The only requirements: your standards must be measurable, and they must make sense to you and your company.

However you choose to certify your suppliers and whatever measurement standard you create, the task is an important one. The complexity and time needed to find, evaluate, and certify suppliers for your relocation package may point to using a qualified relocation company to save you the time to certify the various components of your policy.

Proven, professional relocation companies perform certification and supply chain management procedures for you. This saves HR time—and employer money. Whether you choose to make this a DIY project or simply choose a relocation firm, you will ensure a smooth, stress-free, successful relocation program.

How to Manage Your Relocation Supplier Network  

Topics: Service Level Agreement, Supply Chain Management, employee relocation concerns

Supply Chain Management - Carrier Selection

Posted by George Herriage on Tue, Dec 03, 2013

When selecting van lines, or agents thereof, you should evaluate a number of top carriers to create a network of primary and secondary choices. Whether you self-administer or use a third-party relocation firm for your employee transfers and new hires, your company should be comfortable with the preferred group of moving van organizations.

Carrier Selection

Toy Truck FleetYour relocation policy no doubt provides for the moving and transportation of employees’ furniture and personal property. While it would be easier on you if all moving carriers were equal, they are not.

Use care when comparing and selecting carriers, as many are attached to national networks. Remember, selecting a carrier with a strong regional or national network means that you will work with their other affiliates at some point.

When analyzing carriers within these networks, you should also evaluate their network partners. Do they produce the same quality results as the carrier you prefer? If you question network partners’ quality control or any facet of their service menu, be sure you receive answers that sufficiently increase your comfort level.

Supply Chain Management of Carriers

Use a supply chain approach to evaluate carriers and relocation companies. You should be comfortable with the following factors, at a minimum.

  • The carriers’ financial stability.
    Be sure any recommended carriers are in strong financial condition, since a carrier in economic distress could pose serious problems to your relocation policy. Their D&B rating is a great place to start.

  • Check out the carriers’ safety record by visiting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
    Your transferees should not have to agonize over the safety of their household goods and personal property. This is more than just an expression of empathy. Their transport safety problems will become your problems.

  • Verify that carriers have acceptable insurance coverage.
    This evaluation step is critical. Many carriers carry only minimal insurance coverage, vastly insufficient to cover most normal volume of household goods, or any valuable personal property. Still other carriers have insurance coverage in amounts that even cover property damage disasters.

  • If transport timeliness is vital for your company, examine their on-time delivery record.
    When you expect your transferee to report for work at the new location, you expect close to immediate productivity. Delayed household goods deliveries generate concern, apprehension and uncertainty, which could impact your transferees’ short term performance.

  • Relocation company supply chain integrity.
    If you outsource this function, your relocation management company must have a high-quality, reliable, and robust selection of preferred carriers.  Using a top relocation management company saves your company money and you administrative work.

Relocating employees can be simple or complex. It is important that you take all steps to ensure that your supply chain or your relocation company’s supply chain includes reliable carriers to safely transport transferees’ household goods. Should they cause accidental property damage, despite their efforts involving care, you need to know you—and they—are protected with sufficient valuation coverage.

Once you ensure your carriers or your relocation company’s carriers meet these criteria, you and your transferees will be more confident about avoiding transport problems. It’s worth your extra effort to evaluate carriers and relocation companies with a supply chain approach.

Free Article:  A Guide to Developing  Relocation Policies

 

Topics: Service Level Agreement, Supply Chain Management, employee relocation concerns

Effective Business Performance Measurements for Your Corporate Relocation

Posted by Mickey Williams on Tue, Jan 17, 2012

06012015_meeting_sq.jpgIf you're in the process of selecting a corporate relocation firm to manage your company's corporate relocation policy, you may have a lot of doubts:

  • How will I know the corporate relocation management company is acting in my best interests?
  • What can I expect from a corporate relocation firm?
  • How will I know if the company is fulfilling its agreements?
  • How can I get the best value for my money when I hire a corporate relocation management company?

It all starts with an effective SLA (Service Level Agreement) and the right KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) to ensure you're paying for the relocation management services you need and getting the high-quality services you paid for.

Learn more about developing relocation policies with our free guide.

Defining KPI and SLA

If these terms are unfamiliar to you—or you've heard of them but aren't sure what they mean, let's first define them. Many experienced businesspeople get these common business performance measurement terms confused.

Service Level Agreement

An SLA is a formal, negotiated agreement, typically part of the contract, that defines the exact services a supplier will offer to a client. More detailed than a Scope of Work, an SLA sets clear expectations for the client, which the service provider must fulfill.

KPI

KPI metrics are used to determine whether or not the supplier or service provider is fulfilling the SLA. KPIs take many forms, but the client and supplier must agree on how performance will be measured. This is accomplished by the client establishing clear, quantifiable goals and expectations (outlined in the SLA.) If a service provider is having any difficulties fulfilling the SLA for any reason, he should bring it to the attention of the client immediately. To preserve the relationship, the two parties should work together to find the deficiencies and see what should be done so the supplier can meet the SLA.

Let's look at an SLA for a very specific type of relocation: a group move. Many of the aspects of an SLA will be the same for individual relocations as with a group move, but because a group move takes place on a large scale, an SLA becomes even more important.

Some factors that may be measured based on an SLA with a corporate relocation firm for a group move are:

  • Number of key employees retained
  • Number of non-essential personnel successfully and fairly terminated
  • Remaining within budget for the move
  • Completing employee moves and corporate moves within the time frame specified
  • Relocated employees satisfaction of the moving process, based on surveys and other metrics, following the move

If your corporate relocation firm does not have KPI metrics established or a relocation process that is clearly measurable through solid facts, budget figures, retention statistics and employee surveys, you may want to consider another firm.

The best relocation firms will not only have KPI metrics in place, but will review the relocation process after every move to make refinements. 

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Topics: KPI, Service Level Agreement, relocation management services, relocation management company

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