Best Practices for Communicating with Service Providers on Cloudscene Marketplace

When it comes to ensuring buyers and sellers are making the most of Marketplace, we always say that encouraging transparent communication across Cloudscene’s community is key.

We’ve created a completely digital experience for sourcing network services which means that throughout the process, there is as little old-school manual procurement work as possible involved. This includes connecting with, reaching out to, and communicating with service providers who wish to fulfill your requirements. 

So, we want to make sure you’re able to build valuable and positive relationships with the vendors you’re working with – digitally. Here are three best practices for communication you can undertake to create beneficial and productive connections on Marketplace. 

1. Create a clear and comprehensive Marketplace listing

When service providers browse Cloudscene Marketplace looking for buyer listings that they can fulfill, they’re likely to see markets in which you need services and the specific service types you’re looking for, front and center on each post. 

Similarly, when you’re creating a listing, you’ll be matched with vendors you can then invite to quote your requirements depending on what you need and where. So, it’s best to ensure you’re as specific as possible with your intended locations and make sure you include each individual service needed for your project in your listing. 

You’ll have other opportunities during the creation process where you can be as detailed as possible with your requirements. For example, in the ‘Advanced Options’ section as you add services, you can specify your access type, features like Q in Q and jumbo frames, minimum SLA, and hand-off type. You can also expand on these details in the  ‘additional notes’ sections at each stage and/or in the ‘additional information’ box before you submit your listing.

Add documentation attachments, such as spreadsheets, where possible to support your listing requirements. Purpose-written documentation can give the service provider more context around your project and drill down into the architecture of your plan to help them give a comprehensive response to – and bid appropriately on – your requirements. 

Remember, you can schedule the start time of your listing if needed for when you’re ready to begin receiving bids from service providers. 

2. Shortlist service providers quickly

Once you’ve created your Marketplace listing, because of our quality control protocols, you should always only receive quotes back from the service providers that can fulfill your requirements. They’ll let you know via a tailored response form how they’re best-suited to help with your network needs; they’ll be prompted to consider each of your specific requirements in their response. You’ll receive an email notification when this happens.

When it comes to comparing and shortlisting quotes, pricing is a great indicator of who to choose, particularly if your team is clear on your budget from the get-go. To make it easy, you can export a CSV file of information on all of the current bids on each of your Marketplace listings enabling you to compare quotes easily, side by side. 

Once you have enough responses to start comparing, we recommend shortlisting service providers ASAP. This will indicate to those valued vendors that you’re interested in their services. Keeping contacts in the loop with your procurement progress is a great step towards creating a positive long-term relationship by easing their experience using the Cloudscene platform.

3. Notify successful service providers

When you’ve made your decision on the quotes you’ve received, and your listing date has ended, it’s best to let the successful service provider/s know so they can get the ball rolling on fulfilling your requirements in time. 

You can do this by clicking on your listing and going to any submitted bid. Click ‘successful’ on those you wish to fulfill your requirements for that listing. They’ll then receive a notification and reach out to you directly via the contact details you’ve provided on Cloudscene. Easy! Remember to select your successful service provider/s immediately after the listing closes to keep up transparency; after all, you’re communicating with service providers you’re going to be working with and likely want to build a positive first impression.

4. Let unsuccessful service providers know why you declined

You must go through the process of declining bids that have not been successful on your Marketplace opportunity. It’s best to do this as soon as possible (by marking the provider/s as Unsuccessful in My Marketplace). 

When you’re transparent with service providers when using the platform, they can remain informed about their own activity on Marketplace and can take action as required. There’s a flow-on effect for our community of users who are buying and selling together but rely on updates from one another for that collaboration. 

That being said, please also remember to provide a reason as to why a service provider has not been successful for your listing. You can provide one of multiple reasons by clicking the option when you mark a bid as unsuccessful.

We want to support you in making the most of Marketplace which all starts with communicating efficiently and transparently with other users on Cloudscene. Go to Marketplace to start sourcing.

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