How to handle a customer with large internal bureaucracy

Nowadays, we can find customers that, thanks to their organization chart, legal area or investment capital, handle a huge bureaucracy that significantly affects all execution times of a project.

In this text, I will give a few small tips to achieve a correct management of clients with problems of immediate decisions.

As we all know, the delayed projects generate costs of idle resources, which reflect on them. That is why, from the implementation and management area of the client, this variable should be mitigated, and for this, it is necessary to generate contingency plans that will help to overcome these barriers and end at the times agreed.

For customers with a huge level of bureaucracy, you must have a large account management and beyond that, be close to them to meet the needs they may have in certain moments. Since the decision-making process is so slow, providers must sometimes be in charge of extraneous issues to achieve what is needed, not able to generate more implementation times, which have a direct impact on the cost and feasibility of the project for both parties.

It is no secret that in all projects, it is not possible to comply with the times proposed on many occasions, because it can have disadvantages that the paper does not have. The worst thing is that in companies with bureaucracy, these delays are reflected at the highest level, the decision-making process is not carried out immediately, and it takes days to define guidelines, and this time is reflected directly in the period of completion of the purpose.

This is when the provider should handle the customer in a subtle way and without hurting susceptibilities. This management should be given to the user, trying to analyze the decision to be taken and why you want to take it, exposing its perspective on the topic and to provide valid and viable solutions that will help the buyer to expedite times that at the end have an impact on each one.

When we refer to sensibilities, we are speaking of occasions in which the customers have a well-defined and respected organization chart, then when it comes to interacting with them to give quick solutions, sometimes you should escalate issues with people of higher positions in order to make those decisions faster. Therefore, before going a step further, we must talk to the people directly involved in the project, which are almost always people of engineering and operations, to express how we can help, and with this option they will be able to analyze that both can help them to quickly set the pending issues and continue with the process of the project.

Something that should be kept very clear, and it helps a lot to the management of a project with this type of customers, is the subject of detailed engineering and projection of the project, where there are defined dates, scope, schedules, human resources and payment  milestones. This depends very much on the type of management that the people involved in the project can give to a bureaucratic client.

Payment milestones are mentioned, due to that from previous experiences, it is not feasible to link these to delivery of results, because during an implementation, there are always tasks and resources needed from both sides, and although the provider meets all scheduled tasks, if the customer has not been able to complete those that belong to him, the milestone will not be accomplished, which is not fare for the provider because he already complied with all its scheduled tasks.

With the above, we want to expose the importance of the definition of payment milestones, which are linked to the detailed engineering of the project and to study the customer to look at its internal functioning. This is why it should be kept in mind that a project should not be started only by the commercial part, even though they are the ones who made the first approach with the client and close the start of the project, in order to have a correct picture of the project and a close objective of the timetable, the deployment staff must make an analysis of what it is necessary for the implementation, and the person in charge of managing client should have previously a study the management of the account. So the three parties can  achieve a proposal of timetable, that contains all the tasks to be performed, the owners of these tasks and the moments where the payments are going to be performed. This will greatly assist the financial part of the project and the projection and management that you must have for a particular client.

As you can see, the start and end of a project involve the interaction of several departments of both companies, the provider, and the customer. That is why a project, even if it is very small, must have a correct planning, where you define a series of parameters that must be followed to complete it in the minimum time possible.

Of the most important things that should be taken into account is the type of internal bureaucracy that the client has. With this you should know how to deal with it and that type of management helps to achieve the goals proposed in a timetable, because without this handling the project may undergo day-to-day changes that generate costs for the provider. Wrong File was selected!

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