What to Consider: Selecting the Right Electronics Recycling & Asset Management Vendor (Part II)
By: Jeremy Olson, Dynamic Recycling
In continuation from the March 2012 article discussing environmental responsibility and data security, we now take a look at customer service, and the value of services provided by recycling and asset management vendors.
Customer Service and Value of Services Provided:
A. Value of Service over Price
I believe in the old saying “You get what you pay for”. I find this true in many situations personally but also in business. The electronics recycling industry is a perfect example of this saying. There are recyclers who will provide the jaw dropping lowest price, but I wouldn’t be so quick to jump on to their ship. There are several factors including all of the information previously provided, that play important roles in dictating a recycling corporation’s pricing structure and profit margins.
B. The Cost of Doing Things Right
When recycling, there are companies that promote themselves through the value in the services they provide. We need to allow ourselves to step away from the “cut to the chase and get to the price mindset”, and allow yourself to understand what the recycler can do for your company in providing the best services. Being able to provide the best services doesn’t come cheap for the recycler and in some occasions for their customers. Through the money recyclers continue to invest in the following; R2 and/or E-Stewards certified certifications, fully securing their facility (24/7 surveillance, keycard access, etc.) paying their workers, and purchasing and maintaining equipment to be able to meet/exceed customer’s data destruction, reporting, and processing standards. These items are just a small chunk of the cost that recycling corporations take on, to ensure that the customer’s recycling expectations are being met and done in the right manner for years to come. Only then, can we truly be honest in saying we can provide, you the customer, the highest value through the services we provide. Most of us understand that when we pay top dollar for something, we expect it to last. Not only it what the product or service provides to us but in the quality of what is provided through the product or service.
C. The Cost in Getting the Cheapest Price
Does this section make sense? In the electronics recycling world, the answer is absolutely! There are many corners available for recyclers to cut in providing the cheapest price to their customers. I have listed a few prevalent examples below:
- Exporting: Exporting is probably one of the biggest issues/laws in the industry. The EPA does NOT allow the exporting of any hazardous materials containing devices to be exported to underdeveloped countries (i.e.China,Malaysia,India, Most of Africa, etc.). There are recyclers and companies working with or within these countries, and find ways to illegally ship materials into the country. This will allow the recycler to pay higher prices for this material, as the companies in the underdeveloped countries don’t have to worry about high labor costs, environmentally responsible disposal, and/or proper handling of hazardous materials contained within most electronic devices/parts. Money is the number one driver on both sides of the exporting fence!!!
- Landfilling: Landfilling is when a company is able to dispose of electronic devices and their materials by dumping them into a landfill. Some states such asWisconsinandIllinoishave implemented “No Landfill Bans for Electronics” throughout the state, requiring all recyclers, residents, etc. to dispose of electronics properly. Other states still allow landfilling of electronic materials but prefer they be recycled properly. Research your state regulations as well as the recycler’s processing standards. If they do landfill some material, please be aware of what this entails. When electronics are landfilled, materials such as lead, ink/toner cartridges, and circuit boards contain materials that leach (leak) hazardous material as it breaks down and decomposes its potential to harm the environment, wildlife, and possibly the people inhabiting the area near the landfill.
D. Affordability in Accommodating Your Financial Requirements
In all business to business relationships there has to be a focus on price and financial analysis. We need to research and compare equally qualified vendors and the pricing that they provide. Although many organizations would have this section at the top of the list in deciding on an electronics recycling vendor, I did not. I believe in getting the best value and service for the best price rather than receiving the best price for the value and service received. I have suggested in the section below a few key points in how to further be able achieve getting the best price and service in acquiring your electronics recycling vendor.
- Be Honest: If you have found a vendor that can seemingly provide you with the best service, in which every other organization’s money but your own can afford. Be honest. Let them know your budget and/or the services you are currently receiving and what to expect in choosing a new vendor. There are many options that can be discussed on both the vendor and customer’s side of the coin that can help lower the costs.
- Explain in detail: Give the potential vendor the opportunity to understand from a 360 degree perspective; your requirements, expectations, past productions and future projections in electronics to be recycled and/or updated within your company. This will allow the recycler to provide to you the most accurate and detailed proposal in providing you their services (i.e. pricing structure: evaluated costs & profits to your company).
- Conduct an On-Site Audit: Our schedules may be hectic, but with the before mentioned “red flag” items to look out for, it is worth your time and your company’s reputation to conduct an on-site audit of your potential recycler’s facility and operations. “Don’t always trust what you hear”, “See it to believe it”, “Don’t judge a book buy it’s cover”….-There is more than one of these sayings for a reason.
About Dynamic Recycling
Dynamic Recycling is a full service electronics recycling, scrap purchasing/brokering, and electronic asset management corporation located in La Crosse, WI. We have been providing customer driven, affordable and environmentally responsible services to residents, businesses, and municipalities throughout the Upper Midwestsince 2007. In addition to being able to service the Upper Midwest with our electronics recycling services, we are also able provide our scrap purchasing and asset management services to customers on a nationwide level. Please feel free to contact us with any business inquiries at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us toll free at 1-877-781-4030.