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6 things to expect from a vendor-client stewardship meeting

partnership_and_stewardship_hand_in_handFor customers of technology solutions (including risk management software, claims admin systems and safety technology), the annual stewardship meeting with a client is very valuable and important. Both client and vendor should approach it as a chance to revisit recent accomplishments. It’s also about looking forward and conducting short- and long-term planning. Equally important, it’s a chance to strengthen the client-vendor partnership by spending a few hours together in person without the distractions of the day.

For us at Ventiv Technology, our annual client conference and roundtable meetings are great opportunities to spend time with clients; however, nothing beats the one-on-one format of a stewardship meeting. Whoever your risk management software company is, we suggest that you expect the following from them at your next stewardship meeting:

  1. Who should attend: We view the stewardship meeting as an opportunity to involve senior people from the client side and from Ventiv who are not involved in the day-to-day activities. We strongly encourage our clients to consider including senior risk management strategy and decision makers in the meeting. Attending from Ventiv will be the account manager and at least one member of our management team. Other Ventiv staff (from, for example, the product or IT team) may attend depending on the agenda and any new projects under consideration.
  2. Logistics: Typically, stewardship meetings are conducted every 12-18 months. Your account manager will contact you to find a date/time that works for everyone who will attend. In addition to the meeting, it’s also a great opportunity to share lunch or dinner (our treat) together. For most meetings, a projector/display along with Internet access is required. If guest Internet access is available, it’s always appreciated and in some cases required depending on the agenda. You can expect your account manager to ask about all of the above and confirm availability. Also, our goal with each stewardship meeting is to send you a copy of our presentation one week in advance so that you can review the content ahead of time. Finally, we tend to dress in business attire for these meetings. If you prefer we leave the ties/scarves and jackets at home we are happy to oblige.
  3. What we ask of you: Towards the top of the agenda, we will reserve time for you to give us an update. Knowing what your department is focused on, Email this to a friend or colleague your KPIs and the like really helps us to serve you better. This is also a good time to share with us what your company as a whole is focused on, including and beyond risk, safety and insurance. For instance, if we learn about planned acquisitions we can have a discussion about handling new/increased exposures, claims and data.
  4. Travel and expense: At Ventiv, an annual stewardship meeting is included in many contracts. This includes our planning, preparation, time to travel, and the meeting itself. In some cases the associated travel expense is included as well. If not, your account manager will provide a detailed travel budget for your approval in advance of our meeting. If there are any questions about expenses associated with the stewardship meeting, your account manager can answer them for you.
  5. What we will cover: We typically follow the client’s corporate update with an update of our own, covering the latest changes throughout the Ventiv organization. We will also give a product roadmap update and share any new technology via slides or an online demo. We will talk about any organizational changes/updates that are pertinent to you. The last parts of the agenda are where we discuss major accomplishments since the last stewardship followed by an update on in-flight projects. We wrap things up with an open forum on “what’s next.” However, this is this is the client’s meeting and we can structure the agenda any way they choose. Ultimately, our goal is an open and robust two-way conversation.
  6. While we are there: In addition to the stewardship meeting itself, this is a great opportunity for us to provide you and your staff with additional training. It’s also the perfect opportunity to get a demo on a module that you might be interested in learning more about, so keep this in mind as you work with your account manager to plan our visit.

Ready to have a meeting? If you are overdue for your next stewardship, just reach out to your account manager and they will work with you to get the next one on the calendar.

Dan Lee is a senior manager with Ventiv Technology’s Enterprise Account Management team. Contact Dan at dan.lee@ventivtech.com.

risk management software ROI


Nov 14, 2014

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