Greetings Professional Providers and Buyers,
September fades and we enter into October. This is one of my favorite months of the year. Some summer projects tapering off and some new ones starting up. Fall is like a reset for me personally. The temperature changes are certainly welcome here in Missouri. Up until last week it was mostly a high 90’s summer straight on through this year. We had about 2 weeks of 100 plus which is normal for us. Now I have to start getting the firewood ready this coming month. I hope everyone else is preparing for the winter. Winter will sneak up on us before we know it so enjoy this beautiful fall weather while you can.
My friends I know I have mentioned this in more than a few of my blogs and I will mention again and again so bear with me. Let’s get these two out of the way first.
First off I still do not see enough Providers rating Buyers. Remember this is a two way street available to all. Buyers are rating Providers all the time. So you Providers get to it and let’s see some more ratings of the Buyers as well. This helps both sides, believe it. It helps boost accountability and ultimately delivers better work results for buyers and providers. And remember as I have said before, most of the Buyer ratings of Providers are good!
I had a Provider call me last week regarding a buyer not adhering to some extra verbiage he had put into his counter offer. Remember the change that was made last year? Let’s revisit for a moment. Field Nation’s goal is to maintain an orderly and efficient marketplace where both Buyers and Providers have transparency to the expectations and requirements of a work order. We had found that some providers would use the explanation field to insert aggressive and unreasonable terms that would be difficult or impossible to enforce. These actions led to instances of conflict that we believe are best resolved by limiting the scope of terms that can be included in a counter offer. So I hope everyone understands once again that we have to protect the integrity of the marketplace and therefore the reasoning behind the changes.
OK so second, let’s revisit, “Getting Paid.” I have a discussion at least 3 to 4 times a week with Providers regarding the approval process. As we all know the cutoff for payment processing is 12 Noon Central time on Tuesday and again on Friday. So every Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning and then again Thursday afternoon and Friday mornings my phone and many of our Support Staff phones are ringing off the hook with the same question, “Why has my work order not been approved?” First off before I proceed here let’s all remember that once you are assigned to a work order it is your responsibility to mark ready to go and confirmed. OK? Alright moving forward now there can be several reasons why a work order has not been approved by the buyer.
- Is the work order complete according to the SOW and marked as such?
- Did you upload all deliverables required? I had a guy call me last week about approval and he had not marked it as work done. Hard to get approval if you did not mark it work completed right?
- Is your time on site entered correctly and also if you had to check in and out with the Buyer does the time match what you have entered into Field Nation? We run into that one a lot my friends. Just had one this morning. Times entered on WO do not match time recorded by Buyer.
The Field Nation mobile apps for iPhone and Android make completing tasks, uploading deliverables and entering / tracking your time on site easier than trying to remember to do so when you get back to a PC. So make sure you’ve downloaded the mobile app and are using it consistently. Here is the Android link and here is the iPhone link.
Another thing is to be certain you have received authorization for a spend limit increase request if you have entered one. Remember, communicate with the Buyer. Utilize messages in the work order and pick up the phone as well. Yes, there will be times when you have done all of this and your work order still is not approved. But, did you look in the SOW and see if a time frame is given for approval? I had a Provider call me last week asking to assist and when I reviewed the work order he had just marked it work done 2 days before yet the statement of work clearly read that the Buyer would take up to 10 days to approve. So let’s all make sure we read the entire work order. There will always be a time when a work order should be approved and all the requirements have been met. That is when you call our Support for assistance. We will reach out to the Buyer for you if you are not getting a response from them regarding your inquiry for an update.
Remember, we are all human and many Buyers are dealing with literally hundreds of work orders on a weekly and even a daily basis. I always advise both Provider and Buyer to go by my unwritten 5 to 7 or 10 day turn around for minimum at times for approvals. 5 to 7 days should be the norm here. If you get approval quicker than that, great! If you are a seasoned professional who has worked with the Buyer many times before and you always have your ducks in a row you will most likely get approval faster than that. But we do need to give people time to review. And please keep in mind that getting upset, yelling at people and sword fighting in messages is never a good idea. Threatening to go to the end user and things of that nature do not work either and are very harmful to the relationship between Buyer and Provider. And also doing so not only violates our Field Nation User Agreement, Legal Terms and Conditions but is also known as Tortious Interference and is illegal. So please always call us to discuss before going off the deep end. The calm professional approach always works best my friends. Additionally we can always do engage in arbitration if necessary where Field Nation will assist in resolution and get it all squared away for you.
Oh before I forget, did anyone get to go over and check out www.mindtools.com? It is a very interesting site and I mentioned last week I find it useful. (No, I do not get commissions from them for mentioning their site)J Have a look at their Toolkit and see Problem Solving. I see some really useful information to utilize in your daily business interactions. I found “Appreciative Inquiry” to be really interesting. I think many of us look at a problem as what is not working. But it is a different approach to look at what is going right. And this will start you off on a positive note as you move forward to solve the problem. Again I thought it was really interesting. Let me know what you think.
Friends, we here at Field Nation are committed to you. We need you so we can grow. You are the reason we have grown. We need your ideas so please keep them coming. We rely on each other so we can all be successful together. Both Buyer and Provider are a part of our Field Nation Team. This is how we look at you. Believe it!
And a huge “Thank You” to everyone for all you do every day. We could not do this without you.
Well that is it for this month. Please feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me if you want to join my group “VP Customer Service Corner” in Field Nation. I always enjoy hearing from everyone.
Thanks to all for your continued support of Field Nation and as always BE SAFE.