Inspiration and Integration: ASAE Annual Meeting 2017 Video Recap

 

A number of Omnipress employees made the trek across the border to participate in this year’s ASAE Annual Meeting in Toronto. As usual, it was an event full of informative sessions and great conversations.

Two members from the Omnipress Print and Fulfillment team that attended the meeting, Tracy Gundert and Janel Savich, talked with Dan Loomis about their takeaways from the week and about two themes that came up repeatedly in their conversations: Inspiration and Integration.

Watch the video below to learn a common challenge that all associations face, and how association staff can use “integrations” to make their jobs easier.

 

ASAE Annual Meeting 2017 Event Recap Video Transcript

Dan: So what was the number one thing that you heard from people stopping by, visiting the booth, or just networking and general sessions. What was everybody concerned about or inspired by?

Tracy: I think they all want to provide, all the different associations, no matter if it’s a trade association, a professional association, they all want to continue to improve the benefits for their members. What more can they give their members? How can they really become part of the value that their members receive from being a part of the association? They want to be sure that they are providing that.

Janel: I think that collaboration, getting together with our clients, hearing how our service fits in to meet the educational goals of their members and the people they serve. It’s inspiring!

Dan: ASAE Annual Meeting always brings people together to talk about innovation, and technology, they always do a good job with that. What types of things did they talk about with integration this year, anything in particular?

Janel: They want that ease to have their systems integrated together so they can talk to one another. Make their jobs easier. Pull the information together; get the reports in one central location.

Tracy: Along with talking about multiple partners, that is certainly one thing we heard, even with print and fulfillment vendors is that they want to have one source. Right now, a lot of them have multiple sources where they are printing at one facility and fulfilling out of another facility and it’s just, you know, its not very integrated in terms of the data. And it also creates a lot more time that they have to spend coordinating it, so they are really looking for that all-in-one type of solution.

 

Are You Afraid To Rely On A Single Supplier?

Recently, I had a conversation with a potential customer who indicated their organization was “burned” by using a single source for all of their print and fulfillment needs. The conversation really made me think.

We all agree that diversification is a great thing when it comes to our financial portfolio. Having “all of your eggs in one basket” is a HUGE risk, and most would add that’s it’s downright foolish. But does that mean that diversification is right for all situations? Do we need to diversify our vendors so we don’t get caught looking like a fool?

I found the comment “burned” somewhat of a glass-half-empty type of attitude. What if instead, we focused on what positive things could result and looked for ways to minimize risks? Much more of a glass-half-full attitude.

I asked myself, “how can organizations minimize these risks?”

This led me to an article I read: “Troubled Times Demand Dynamic Supplier Relationships.” It was focused on vendor/supplier relationships in the print bindery industry, but there was some really good advice that can apply to many business relationships. Here are my key takeaways from this article:

4 Ways to Maximize Your Single Supplier Relationship

  1. Think Partnerships. Many organizations just see their suppliers as people they pay each month. That’s disheartening. Vendors are your partners and want to understand your needs. It’s in everyone’s best interest to do so. They cannot succeed unless you do.
  2. Understand Expectations. Establish clear expectations to facilitate rapport and minimize misunderstandings.
  3. Tap Into Your Vendors Expertise. A good supplier is on top of the latest industry challenges. They want to help. Leverage your collaborative knowledge to help resolve some of your greatest challenges.
  4. Keep Communicating. Strong relationships require honest communication about your needs, goals and expectations.

If you focused your efforts on establishing a strong, healthy relationship with a vendor–someone that you could count on as much as your best friend, your spouse or your best hunting dog–would you still feel compelled to diversify in order to avoid getting “burned?” Give it some thought.

Read more about the value of a single source vendor: 3 Steps to Simplify Your Production, Fulfillment and Distribution Process.

Is your view of your supplier relationship half-full or half-empty?

 

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