As a nonprofit serving over 5,000 safety services providers, Savvik Buying Group was stretched thin on a regular basis. Savvik’s mission was to provide the best contracts to the entire public safety sector. To help agencies like Emergency Medical Services (EMS), fire departments, law enforcement, and hospitals get the best price on the supplies they required without any hassle. The problem was, Savvik didn’t have the resources to find and negotiate all the agreements they needed.
UNA ROI Summary
✓ Increased buying power
✓ Upgraded contract portfolio
✓ Expanded membership reach
✓ Monetary savings
✓ Pre-negotiated agreements
Savvik’s job was to make supply purchasing easier for safety providers, to reduce their procurement efforts so they could focus on their jobs — saving lives.
By providing publicly bid, best-price negotiated agreements on everything from light bulbs to maintenance materials, to medical supplies, Savvik was a one-stop shop for everything a public agency might need.
But finding and negotiating each contract was taking too much time. Between serving over 5,000 US safety services providers, and working with several thousand agencies, Savvik was strapped for time and resources. Increasing Savvik’s contract portfolio was a tedious process, too difficult to scale efficiently. The team was also having trouble getting some necessary contracts due to their limited buying power and niche industry.
These challenges were a day-to-day concern for Mickey Schulte, Savvik’s Executive Director. But he wasn’t sure what to do about it.
Everything changed when Schulte received a phone call:
“We got a cold call one day. He said my name is Anthony, and I’m with UNA — and I hung up on him. Then he called again… and again. And eventually, he got me to listen to what made sense.”
Schulte quickly realized that partnering with UNA would not only save his company time and money, but it would also increase their purchasing power. Accessing UNA’s agreements would allow them to expand and diversify their own contract portfolio.
“Initially, I thought, we’ve been in business 20 years, why do we need something like this now? But we realized we needed UNA because it’s not just about the agreements we thought we needed; there were other benefits we never dreamt of offering that UNA could help us provide.
“Medical supply contracts are why we initially signed on with UNA, but it’s some of the ancillary agreements that are the most fun, AT&T, Hotel Engine, entertainment, rental cars, theme parks.UNA’s contracts have helped us engage a part of our membership we wouldn’t have ordinarily reached. If you can help somebody working in an ambulance making $10 an hour save $20 on his cell phone bill every month, believe it or not, that’s a big deal. The little things add up.
“Before UNA we did most things on our own.We didn’t know what we were missing. But once we were integrated, we immediately started seeing the value.
By leveraging UNA’s purchasing power, Savvik was able to obtain contracts that were previously out of reach, and receive greater discounts. Less time wasted negotiating, and Savvik’s members had access to more benefits. It was a win-win.
“Accessing contracts that someone else has already done the work for is extremely beneficial. The vastness of the UNA agreements and their scopes were far better than what we could have obtained on our own.
“UNA has been a great partner, both in helping us find new avenues and in helping support us in areas where we don’t have enough manpower. We’re very interactive; UNA backs us at trade shows, and they’ve presented to our board of directors several times. UNA is conscientious and knows how to value your time. You make a phone call, give them your request, and they’re timely with their answer.
“As far as return on investment, we get value in a monetary form — in savings. We also get it through their support, UNA’s customer support teamhas been terrific. I call them and know that I don’t have to follow up. I know that once I hand off something to them, it will be taken care of. That’s invaluable when it comes to a contracting partner, knowing that you don’t have to continually check in to make sure they’re doing their job.
“We have contracts all over the place, and we think we’re pretty good at what we do. But before UNA we had no idea how much we were missing out on and how much help was available.”
“UNA has been an integral part of growing our platform and reaching our membership. I would recommend UNA to anyone.”
Mickey Schulte, Executive Director Savvik Buying Group