January 2, 2020
Choosing the right suppliers can be one of the most challenging aspects of many event professional’s roles. We all hope our partner will provide a seamless service, meet our needs and offer a quality product. However, this isn’t always the case and bringing in the wrong supplier can prove a huge problem, a poor service or product can reflect badly on you and could even damage your relationship with the client or vendor. Based on this it is clear to understand why choosing the right partner is of vital importance. Here at Carryway we have comprised 6 tips to help you choose the right vehicle supplier for your next event:
Understanding your event requirements is your first port of call. Try to ensure your list of requirements is as comprehensive possible, this can be difficult if you are still in the decision-making process but include as much detail as you can.
Be sure to speak to your internal stakeholders to understand their needs and use these to build a breakdown of your total event vehicle needs, days required and the applications they will be used for. The more information the better.
Don’t just think of this as shopping list though. Think outside of the box, what are my pain points? what additional services do I need my vehicle supplier to provide? here have I been let down in the past?
Additionally, think of any extras you will need for your vehicles e.g. tripod carriers for film crews, waste cages for refuse management, branding for front of house vehicles.
A good comprehensive list of requirements will help you ensure your project quotes are accurate and you deliver within budget.
TIP: Often involving event vehicle suppliers at this stage can be helpful. Their years of experience means they frequently know what you will need better than you do. Reach out and ask them for advice in building your brief.
Now you have your requirements its time to build your choice set of potential suppliers. But where do you start? With lots of choice and many suppliers claiming to offer the same service how do you narrow your list down?
Google search can be your best starting point – do some research and check out potential suppliers websites. People often say “don’t judge a book by its cover” but the quality and professional appearance of a supplier’s website can often reflect their business maturity, size and service levels, so go with your gut.
Look for testimonials, these can be a great way to understand the quality of a potential supplier. Here are some of ours:
“It has been a delight to deal with Carryway. They combine efficient logistics with a professional approach to every aspect of delivery, and the equipment our event benefited from was both functional and stylish.” Rachel Mitchell – Senior Manager for Golf Events, IMG Golf
“The Carryway operation was run very professionally and smoothly and to a very high standard. Their knowledge and attention to detail with the complicated planning and logistics involved were exceptional.” Paul Bush OBE – Director of Events, VisitScotland
Finally, ask around. There is no alternative to hearing it from the horse’s mouth. A direct recommendation can be one of the best ways to find a new supplier, equally, you can be sure to stay clear of those who have let your colleagues or industry peers down in the past.
This is where your brief will come in and the more detailed your list of requirements from section 1, the more accurate your quotes will be.
Be sure to request quotes from more than one supplier. Even if you are set on one choice, multiple quotes will help you get a feel for the industry pricing and help you benchmark your chosen supplier.
Almost all event professionals will advise you not to choose your supplier purely based on cost. We all have budgets to work to and choosing your supplier based on the initial quote may seem to make sense, but if this sacrifices quality and experience you could quickly regret your decision.
Lower rates can mean a lower quality service or less reliable vehicles, which can cause your event serious problems and often incur increased costs to put things right when your supplier drops the ball.
Evaluating your options and choosing the right supplier can be tricky, each potential supplier will have positives and negatives so you need to decide which is the best choice for your event who you can trust to deliver.
Understand the total package, what back up and support is included from the supplier and what will you be charged extra for? Does the supplier have a team of trained engineers and preferred sub-contractors or do they rely on ad-hoc outsourced support, (we have even heard of suppliers sending the AA to repair a customer’s vehicle, not best practice).
Be sure to ask about fleet age, not all suppliers invest in keeping their vehicle rental fleet up-to-date so ask them to confirm the age range of vehicles you will be supplied with.
Check for hidden costs and understand the scope of the quote.
Finally, be sure to speak with all of your potential suppliers, a conversation can go a long way and often helps you gauge the supplier’s service levels and approach. It also helps you learn about the client experience working with them, e.g. did you speak with a dedicated hire team or a salesperson out on the road doubling as your event manager.
There are numerous frameworks and models you can use to help you evaluate your options and make the right choice. You could score each supplier on Price, Service, Reputation and Quality. However, we would suggest you choose a supplier who you feel comfortable with and who instils confidence.
If you are unsure, ask more questions, speak to colleagues and industry peers to learn about their experience or even arrange a meeting with some of your potential suppliers.
Interested in our products or have any queries? Don’t hesitate to get in touch.
The Carryway operation was run very professionally and smoothly and to a very high standard. Their knowledge and attention to detail with the complicated planning and logistics involved were exceptional; they were a pleasure to deal with and I can highly recommend their services.
It has been a delight to deal with Carryway, who were our Official Golf Buggy Supplier for The 2019 Solheim Cup. They combine efficient logistics with a professional approach to every aspect of delivery, and the equipment our event benefited from was both functional and stylish. A big thank you to a wonderful Partner.
The Carryway buggy was a lifesaver – and that’s no exaggeration! We were racing in the Aston Martin Le Mans Festival, which is a 45 mins support race just before the start for the big 24hr race. Our garages were about 2km away so getting all our gear to/from the pitlane for the race was made so simple because of the buggy! And it would have taken (the team) ages to get there and back! We are enormously proud of our new buggy and the livery made for it. It helps us stand out and helps raise our profile, not to mention being an essential team donkey.”
Thank you Carryway for supplying the buggy for us at Chatsworth this year. All went well and no issues at all – it was a definite improvement on the equipment supplied last year by a different company. Happy to use you again for next year .
Thank you for the excellent customer service that we recently received from Hugh Healy, Carryway Support. Hugh was very thorough and had excellent communications with us regarding our buggy fleet at The Westerwood Resort – nothing was too difficult for him.
Our open day event is a very important day for us, and it makes life much easier to have a relationship with a company (Carryway) that we can rely on each year.
Carryway are always a pleasure to deal with and their drivers are always friendly and professional. It takes a little bit of worry out of my job knowing that I can rely on your good service.
Many thanks to the team, especially Adam who was friendly, helpful and professional.
It is a pleasure to work with Carryway, the service and support they provide has been first class. We originally signed up for 14 brand new buggies for one year to sample working with the company.
We were pleased with the service and the product provided and have since signed up for the next few seasons and hopefully with many more to come after that.
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