Home / Business / Poor quarterly business reviews expose supplier shortcomings and risk revenue

Poor quarterly business reviews expose supplier shortcomings and risk revenue

Many suppliers are suffering customer churn and loss of revenue as a result of inadequate business review processes, according to new research by business review platform, Clientshare.

Eighty-eight per cent of buyer organisations state that suppliers aren’t demonstrating enough evidence of value and innovation in quarterly business reviews (QBRs), and more than three quarters (76 per cent) report that it often feels as though QBRs are merely a tick-box exercise for their suppliers. With 93 per cent of buyers reporting that they are looking at their supplier relationships with much more scrutiny than two years ago, Clientshare says suppliers need to “up their game” to maintain a competitive edge.

The research found that buyers of B2B services – including facilities management, logistics, IT services and business process outsourcing – in the UK and US are becoming increasingly disillusioned with suppliers who deliver poor-quality QBRs.

This has a hugely damaging impact on suppliers. More than three quarters (82 per cent) of buyers report they have cancelled a contract because they felt their supplier didn’t deliver enough value and innovation.

As well as customer churn, low-quality QBR processes also result in suppliers missing out on growth within their accounts. Seventy-four per cent of buyers report that suppliers are missing out on key opportunities with their organisations by not making the most of QBRs.

‘The QBR Delusion’ whitepaper reveals the critical importance of QBRs for business relationships, as the number of face-to-face meetings between suppliers and their clients has dramatically declined post pandemic. Sixty-eight per cent of buyers point to QBRs (or regular review meetings) as the most important moment for suppliers to evidence their value, share insights and expertise, and create demand for additional services.

In addition, the majority (59 per cent) of buyers state that QBRs frequently become overly operational and lack a true strategic focus. Other frustrations include sub-standard content, suppliers failing to explain how they plan to address ongoing challenges, and meetings not taking place at the agreed cadence.

James Ward, Managing Director, Clientshare, commented:“The QBR is the best time for suppliers to have meaningful business conversations with their clients. But most are wasting this opportunity and are often damaging their client relationships in these meetings. Customers can see that suppliers are simply going through the motions. They’re turning up with irrelevant and inaccurate content, and they’re overly focused on operational data, looking backwards instead of focusing on the future and helping their clients to address their big strategic challenges.”

As frustrations around QBRs escalate, relationships between buyers and suppliers are deteriorating. Sixty per cent of buyers now believe that their suppliers are getting by on delivering the bare minimum, and 79 per cent say the bare minimum is no longer acceptable – they know they have choices and hold the power in their supplier relationships. Moreover, 56 per cent say they don’t trust that suppliers will live up to the promises they made when they first signed the contract.

Ward continued: “Huge numbers of suppliers are losing clients and revenue because they’re not using QBRs as an effective way to demonstrate value and innovation, strengthen relationships, or address client concerns in a timely way. Suppliers need to wake up and recognise that expectations around QBRs have evolved over recent years. It’s no longer enough to be presenting low-level operational data, they need to be providing actionable insights and ideas. Today, outsourcing is about so much more than cutting costs. Suppliers need to be showing how they can help clients tackle big challenges in areas such as innovation and ESG.”

Clientshare’s research highlights the content buyers regard as essential for suppliers to share during QBRs. This includes operational performance data, summaries of how suppliers are addressing client feedback and challenges, strategic initiatives, and opportunities for additional value and innovation. Crucially, buyers also want suppliers to provide clear plans on how to deliver agreed outcomes and key action points following these review meetings.

Significantly, the research reveals that there are major upsides for suppliers that optimise their review processes to meet evolving client needs. Buyers become much more engaged with suppliers that have clear and strong processes around QBRs. For instance, they’re more likely to leave feedback, NPS, and CSAT scores when they feel they are clearly tracked and actioned by a supplier. And, crucially, 74 per cent of buyers state they would definitely be more likely to buy from a supplier that consistently listens to and acts on the feedback they’ve provided.

Facilities Management Journal Survey 2024

At Facilities Management Journal, our commitment is to deliver content that meets the needs and interests of our readers. To ensure we continue to provide valuable insights and engaging articles, we invite you to participate in our Reader Survey.

Your opinion is invaluable in shaping the future direction of our magazine. By sharing your thoughts, preferences, and suggestions, you play a crucial role in enhancing the content and overall experience for our readership.

To access the survey, please click on the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9XVVXYP.

About Sarah OBeirne

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *