How much time do you spend thinking about the third-party vendors you hire to work with your business? Chances are, they deserve more of your attention.
Recent surveys indicate as much as 63 percent of breaches stem from third-party access. That’s according to Reciprocity. In addition, some of the most devastating cyberattacks in recent years have occurred not to big companies, but to their vendors.
It doesn’t matter if you’re hiring a new IT company, a digital marketer, or a mover, it’s important to choose the right third-party vendor. These four tips will enable you to do just that.
Consider the Service
Start by considering the services you require from a third-party vendor. Not all require the same scrutiny.
For example, a mover that is hired to reorganize furniture in the office won’t require the same extensive research as an IT company that will have access to important company information.
The duration of the project is worth considering too. Some vendors are great for one-off projects while others require more consideration because you’ll be working with them on a regular basis.
Look for Someone with Experience
It’s never a bad idea to ask for a vendor’s level of education, especially if you’re hiring someone like an attorney, but experience matters more than education.
When looking for a third-party vendor, look for:
- Years of experience in the industry
- Experience working with other well-known clients
- Awards, accolades, and associations
Chances are, if the company has been around for a while and they’ve been recognized for their service, they will provide you with a high level of service as well.
Ask for References
Just because a third-party vendor works well with some clients doesn’t mean they’re the right fit for you. For example, an IT professional may be touted for their speediness, but they might not take the time to discuss IT solutions with you. That could be good for some businesses and bad for others.
Start by conducting a search online. Chances are, you’ll be able to find reviews of that particular company.
You should also ask for references. If they don’t have any references to give you, run the other way! If they do, take the time to give them a call and ask thoughtful questions.
Ask About Their Security Protocols
Chances are, you do a lot to keep your business and its information safe. Unfortunately, as was mentioned above, that isn’t enough because third-party vendors can easily divulge important information about your company, even if it is by accident.
There’s a lot you can do to achieve better security with third-party vendors, but don’t hesitate to ask them how they will keep your information safe. You can also ask if they have experienced any breaches in the past and what they’ve done about it.
Don’t just hire the first third-party vendor that shows up in a Google search! Follow these tips and you can ensure your experience with your newest vendor is pleasant.