In any business, the best relationships you have are the ones built on trust. With 89% of buyers agreeing that the salespeople they do business with are “trusted advisors”, this emphasises that both delivering customer success and providing great value is one of the biggest priorities for businesses today.
What is a trusted advisor?
A trusted advisor is an individual who has developed a relationship with their customer beyond a point of sale or project transaction. They are considered to be industry leaders, as they are well equipped with industry knowledge that can drive their buyers forward with their innovation and tackle a range of issues effectively.
The importance of a trusted advisor
From the timeframe needed to the resources required, trusted advisors help you tackle the challenges before, during and after your project has finished, so you receive the best outcome possible. For instance, they can help in areas such as:
- Identifying your current challenges and see how you can overcome them
- Providing strategic recommendations based on your goals and requirements
- Exploring opportunities to improve the outcome of your project
- Looking at the technology available in the market to see which can deliver the most efficiency based on your business needs
Why you should look for a solutions partner that can become your trusted advisor
Finding a solutions partner who’s focused on developing their relationship with you and knows the technology that can drive your business forward allows your transformation journey to be as seamless as possible. They’re able to gain a deeper understanding of your needs through their interactions with you to recommend solutions that suit your budget, goals and expected outcomes of the project.
Additionally, as a solutions provider will be with you throughout an implementation, they can’ help you make strategic decisions after the project is underway. If any opportunities appear during a project, including new integrations not previously available, a solutions provider can identify these and discuss your options about updating your existing systems. Here are four traits to look out for that suggest they can become your trusted advisor:
1. They are credible
The right solutions partner will provide you with reassurance you’re choosing the most suitable path as part of your transformation strategy. From their past projects, they’ll be well equipped with industry knowledge and the software that will propel your business forward, so you’ll see more value in the outcome of your project.
2. They understand change management is key
Not everyone is going to be a fan of change. However, with the right solutions partner, they know from best practice what they can do to gain stakeholder buy-in to increase the chances of a projects success. This offers value towards your transformation journey as they can provide recommendations on how to implement an effective change management strategy, from planning and engaging your team to executing the project.
3. They dial into your business needs
No one wants to deal with a solutions provider who:
- Isn’t open to taking new ideas on board
- Fails to develop their relationships past the technical aspects of a project
Instead, look out for one who’s willing to take on board your challenges, and those who actively communicate on broader topics to develop a meaningful relationship with your business. With a solutions provider who takes time to understand your business needs, this offers more value towards your project, ensuring they are acting towards your best interests instead of their own.
4. They act selflessly
With transformation projects, anything can be subject to change, from bringing in integrations that previously went under the radar to extensions in the time it takes to complete. Trusted advisors will go out of their way to offer advice and support to increase the efficiency of the project , as they understand that ultimately, they’re in it for the long term. It’s a key trait to look out for when choosing a solution partner as your trusted advisor as it allows your project to stay on track, no matter if any delays occur along the way.
For more on the traits you should look out for when choosing a trusted advisor, click here.
Imagining the future of the professional services industry
At Columbus, we believe the most successful projects are built on the back of great, long-lasting relationships. However, we also understand the professional services landscape changes constantly, and that you need to be as agile and resilient as possible to effectively tackle the many challenges facing the industry.
Our interactive infographic helps prepare you for the most unexpected situations, covering:
- The strategic and operational challenges facing professional services companies
- How digitisation is transforming the professional services industry
- And more