Just like in every industry, the sales process in the workforce solutions space has evolved. Five years ago, you and your team may have shown up at a pitch meeting with a roadmap for the prospective client’s contingent labor strategy over the next handful of years.

Such an approach is no longer feasible. With ever-changing technologies and evolving business needs, it’s simply unrealistic to try to predict the best way to manage a client’s contingent labor force years down the line. As clients’ needs inevitably will change and disruption in our own industry continues, presenting a five-year roadmap at a pitch meeting is both unhelpful and misguided.

Exhibit agility. Instead, what you need to do is demonstrate your firm’s ability to pivot your services and solutions to fit what may be needed in a year’s time. Is your firm agile? Are your solutions cutting-edge and results-driven? Are your vendors both reputable and varied?

Today, these are the questions prospective clients are asking and in order to sell your solutions effectively, you need to have solid answers. Establish your ability to be flexible with your client and that you have the right platforms and solutions to change when needed.

Position your firm as their partner for growth. Growth is both an exciting and nerve-wracking time for organizations, and as the United States economy added more jobs than expected in the first quarter of 2017, many anticipate organizations to continue to experience growth in the years ahead.

However, this strong economic growth brings expansions in both size of staff (contingent and permanent) and geographic spread. These expansions present staffing opportunities and challenges for organizations — and many look to outside expertise for help.

As an organization expands staff at headquarters, established internal teams may have an understanding of the market yet not have the in-house capabilities to oversee a large proportion of hires in a short period of time. In addition, when expanding into new territories, companies may need help navigating a new market. These two hurdles make an organization ripe for a talent solution partner — and they need reassurance that your firm has the ability not only to fulfill current growth requirements, but be their partner as they plan for future growth.

Customize, customize, customize. Don’t get lazy on the front end: Take the time to think through a customized solution before your pitch meeting. One of the most important factors that will affect the success of your pitch is how customized your solution is to the client’s needs. Showing a firm understanding of the challenges facing the organization, and presenting specifics on how you will solve those problems, will give your pitch the upper hand over your competitors. Your pitch meeting checklist. As you walk into your pitch meetings this year, remember these fundamental things:

  1. Ditch the roadmap. A roadmap will immediately make you appear dated and uninformed. Leave it at the office.
  2. Focus on advancement. Remember to reassure the client that your solutions will not only be there as they grow, but will help them grow more efficiently and effectively.
  3. Throw out the tired answer. Never bring a canned solution to the table. A winning pitch will present a customized offering built specifically to the client’s needs.

Remember, there is no “one size fits all” approach. Selling staffing solutions has always been a complicated and nuanced process — and now more so than ever. However, these few tips should help guide you in the right direction.