When it comes to joining networks, a big concern is the amount of financial protection that is offered.  This ranges a great deal from $0-$100,000, receivables protection vs. bankruptcy/ insolvency protection, and different processes for accessing the funds altogether. 


Many forwarders think that the higher protection offered by a network, the better.  We understand this impulse.  In theory, the higher the protection the better off and more protection you have from your network, right?


We disagree.  We do not offer the highest protection of every network, but over the years we have never needed to increase it, quite simply because we haven’t needed to. 


Why haven’t we needed to raise it?  Because the best protection for your company comes before resorting to being paid out by a Financial Protection Fund. 


There are a few key points to consider:


1: Quality Partners


Joining a network should be about getting connected to reliable quality partners.  If a network is broadcasting how high their payment protection is, what does this say about the faith they have in their members to provide good service?  Ideally, you want to join a network to acquire a trusted network of agents, not just a safety net when things go wrong.


2: The Cost of Losing A Client


Rather than focus on the cost of protection, or the amount of protection, perhaps a better question is: What is the cost of losing a client?  For Life? 


High rates of protection may mean lower quality members.  Lower quality members mean potential client problems.  The cost of losing clients dwarfs the marginal price differences between networks and the amount of protection they offer.


When you think about it, its in the direction of almost committing suicide with your hard-earned clients, if you book them into an uncertain network or partner.  When a network charges nothing, or next to nothing, what does that tell you about much they value what they are offering?  What level of commitment does that demand of the members int he network?   What about the age-old truth: You get what you paid for...


3: Getting Paid 


What do you know about the network’s track record to pay claims on a timely basis?  You may be drawn in at first by a robust protection program, but what use is it if there is a lengthy payout process, or you find yourself repeatedly following up with the network to review or pay your claim?


4: Is the Network Too Big?


Before you make the decision to join a network based on the financial protection, consider first the culture of the network.  Do they prioritize high quality, or higher protection?   If they talk about quality, what specifically can they point to that supports that statement?   For instance, our groups have a quality feedback tool built right into our directory.   Members are able to rate and review each other based on their service, which remains on their profiles, raising accountability and commitment to great quality service.


Is the network so large that they couldn't possibly have a close relationships to all their members?  Is the network so large that you might not be able to expect good, devoted customer service and attention, especially when things start to go wrong?


At Globalink & Global Value Networks, we believe in keeping our network limited to a smaller, higher quality group of closely connected partners.  We take pride in our relationships with our members and bring devoted service to every member in our group.  The cheaper the membership fee is, the less resources that network has to support you, it’s just common sense.  


This approach is what has made the difference with our network for nearly 18 years.   Focus on quality members, support them in every way, and problems with clients are minimal.   If you would like more information on this, or would be interested to set up a meeting to discuss further, please do not hesitate to get in touch: willsiemens@glvnet.com