With the threat of disruption looming, we are seeing enterprise organizations intentionally shift away from business as usual to “transformation.” And executives everywhere are realizing that not only are people the heartbeat of every organization, but having the right people in the right roles is key to creating meaningful change. I’ve had the privilege of working on the transformation of a large technology workforce grappling with a skills gap in the midst of enterprise wide change. And the biggest question for me has been this: How can our organization best support the company’s strategic priorities, and how can we do it using the dollars we already have?

Enter the role of workforce solutions “buyer.” Especially in the age of innovation, the role cannot afford to be as transactional as its name suggests — it must be strategic. And as a solutions provider, you must be too. Here are a few pieces of friendly advice coming directly from a Fortune 50 digital transformation.

Know your buyers. Your buyers range from hiring managers and talent strategists to HR and vendor management professionals. Analyze the person you are directly engaging, but make an extra effort to understand whom they can influence and who influences them.

Before I took on an organization wide talent strategy role, we had a decentralized approach to buying traditional staffing. Hiring managers bought what they needed, when they needed it. My role and subsequent intervention in staffing discussions and hiring decisions confounded longtime vendors, who were quick to dismiss me and the stringent processes I’d put in place to ensure every dollar spent would align with our strategic goals.

And worse yet, these vendors had a limited understanding of the complex stakeholder network I was managing. I had a talent strategy mandate directly from the chief technology officer. I was providing counsel to technical and functional hiring managers. I was balancing my finance partner’s expectations, I was following my vendor manager’s rules, and I was assuring HR that I was not crossing the fuzzy line between my role and theirs.

Some vendors chose to circumvent me initially. The result? Weeks of churn, waiting for approvals, trading emails, hearing “no” and “wait” while resources impatiently sat on the bench — not because we had asked them to, but because vendors had preemptively lined them up with little regard for our own internal timing and processes. When I eventually sat one vendor down to explain their new reality, I didn’t need to bring my CTO into the conversation; the churn spoke for itself.

Change can be painful, but underestimating a client can hurt even worse.

Dig deeper. It can be painstakingly clear to us that we need help, but sometimes the exact kind of help we need is less clear. Help your client by asking the right questions. Is it really a capacity issue? Is there a skills gap on the existing team? Can it be alleviated by upskilling the existing members or does the team need new members?

I once had a hiring manager seeking external staff for a very specific role — or at least, that’s how it was described to me. This manager insisted the role had to be filled by someone with this exact technology and domain knowledge; anything less would negatively impact solution delivery.

But I decided to double-check, enlisting the help of a staffing vendor executive I trusted deeply. After interviewing the hiring manager, she gave her honest assessment: The role the manager was asking for was not going to solve the problem. She provided me with a more strategic and cost-effective alternative.

It’s no secret that the workplace is changing. How we do the work and how we choose who does the work is evolving at a rapid pace. Workforce solutions providers are uniquely positioned to help clients manage internal and external change. So, help your clients by being strategic — know their people, know their processes and develop innovative solutions.

Stop being an order-taker and start being a consultant.