Now, don’t get us wrong. We understand that the value that you and your organization bring to your members, clients, and participants is immeasurable. There aren’t many (if any) other organizations that offer what you’re able to offer and that’s really important. But you’d be surprised how often we hear organizations continue to dedicate valuable time and resources to printing and packing boxes of training material for hours each week. Maybe it’s your marketing intern, or maybe some of your customer service or admin staff that are tasked with the duty of putting the fulfillment hat on. Is that truly what you hired them for, and what are they not doing for your organization while they do these tasks? We’ve asked this question literally hundreds of times, and the answer that is by far the most common is, “Our print and fulfillment process is so unique, that we need to do it manually in-house.”
You’re Not That Unique!
Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you’re not that unique! Yes, each and every print and fulfillment process is a little bit different that requires a certain way of doing things. However, if you’re putting your staff through hundreds of hours of printing, shipping, and repeat, the time to stop is now. Fulfillment of your training materials is something that should be handled by an expert. Someone who’s profession it is to print high-quality materials that represent your brand in the best way possible and ship those materials directly to each individual training site nationwide.
“What we really mean is when it comes to your process, your needs and your system that you’ve set up, chances are that a fulfillment expert has seen it, or a form of it before.”
What we really mean is when it comes to your process, your needs and your system that you’ve set up, chances are that a fulfillment expert has seen it, or a form of it before. Remember, this is the livelihood of fulfillment experts. Their job is to be able to take a unique process and make it run smoothly. A great fulfillment partner is someone who is creative and can think on their feet to help provide you with ideas to improve your process and cut overhead. They’re also someone who chomps at the bit for the opportunity to work with organizations who need guidance on how to properly and efficiently run their print and fulfillment process.
When the time comes that you’re ready to look for a print and fulfillment partner, one of the most important things you should look for is how curious they are. A print and fulfillment partner should begin the process by asking you questions; lots of questions. So many questions that you feel like they know the process better than you before they even print a single training program. At first you may be thinking, “Man, what are they going to ask for next?” Just keep in mind that they are asking questions and being inquisitive because they want to be able to become masters of your process. If they aren’t asking questions, that means they aren’t interested in making your process as efficient and as optimized as possible, and that spells trouble.
One of the other important things to keep in mind when you’re considering a fulfillment partner is their leadership qualities. They should be able to quickly take control of the discussion and lead it with the aforementioned questioning. If they aren’t suggesting ways to make your process better, and just “going with the flow” of your current process, that’s a red flag. Within a meeting or two, you should be able to identify who the team members are that will be handling your process, and who your direct contacts are within the organization. Leadership is an important part of any business process, but it’s especially true when it comes to one that involves a lot of potential revenue.
So just remember, the next time your internal staff is spending countless nights printing and fulfilling your training materials, that your process is not the unique. It’s definitely not too unique for a fulfillment partner to help you free up resources and get them back to doing what you hired them for.
What do you think? How “unique” is your process? Is it worth talking to an expert about? I bet it’s worth a discussion. Let’s chat about your process today and how we can potentially help optimize your time and revenue opportunities.