In a previous blog, Developing a Relationship with Your Technical Writing Services Vendor, we identified three business relationship levels between a company and a technical writing services vendor:
- Strategic partner
- Valued consultant
- Approved vendor
This blog explains why developing a strategic partnership with your technical writing services vendor is the best choice for outsourced documentation projects. Typically, the contribution of approved vendors and valued consultants is measured by whether or not they deliver contracted projects faster, cheaper, and more efficiently. For strategic partners, however, success is based on accomplishment, value, response, innovation, and trust.
Many specialty service providers know that they have much more to offer to the success of a client when their role is that of a strategic partner. By entering into such a partnership, companies and specialty vendors can utilize each other's strengths to make both companies stronger and more profitable.
1. Strategic partners add value to your operation.
A strategic partner doesn't use a one-size fits all approach. Typically, they report to senior members of your company and individualize their service adding value beyond the contract agreement by performing as a trusted adviser. They:
- Know and understand your business goals
- Own your problems with you
- Anticipate your needs
- Work with you to develop innovative solutions
2. Strategic partners allow you to expand your operation as needed.
For company executives seeking to reconcile their balance sheet with the company’s long-term goals, strategic partners can:
- Provide talent and resources giving company personnel the time to focus on core competencies critical to keeping the business profitable
- Reduce the need to maintain a sizaeble head count during slow times
3. Strategic partners work with you in the spirit of continuous improvement.
Strategic partners that are on-board from the start of a project are able to:
- Learn your organization and develop productive relationships with your teams
- Build credibility and trust
- Influence business strategies and direction
- Use their knowledge to provide a new and unbiased perspective on how to manage your content
6 Elements of a Lasting Strategic Partnership
Successful strategic partners are invested in supporting their client’s goals, contributing to their industry, and providing excellent customer service. A long-lasting relationship between you and your strategic partner includes the following elements:
- Written partnering agreement
- High level of trust
- Hierarchy of roles
- Standard process for communication
- Access to company knowledge and resources
- Frequent check-ins with management
To learn more about these key factors...