Wolseley UK identifies online portal provider

Heating and plumbing organisation Wolseley UK, which launched an employee benefits portal for its flexible benefits scheme in 2013, went through an extensive selection process to ensure it chose the most appropriate product.

Wolseley plumbers

Prior to launching its online portal, which is provided by Benefex, the organisation identified up to 10 providers it thought would be suitable to offer a flex platform for its 6,200-plus employees.

The chosen providers were given one hour to present their product. Neil McCawley, head of reward, benefits and policy at WolseleyUK, says: “We gave them a limited amount of time to put a bit of pressure onto them. It enabled them to cover off their platform specifics and allow us to ask questions.

“Doing this meant the session was focused on delivering the main key points that we would be interested in.”

The presentations focused on a number of issues including value for money, branding, usability and functionality. 

The benefits team at Wolseley narrowed down its choice to three providers. The employer then arranged on-site visits to each provider’s office to allow Wolseley representatives to see how each worked and meet the people they would be working with. This also allowed the providers to present their offerings in more detail.

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McCawley says: “We wanted a provider to start with the non-whizzy stuff. We wanted someone we could work with so that it was seamless to progress the portal and gradually [add] things to make it a one-stop shop.

“Relationships and visits give a real feel of how we could work with a provider. It is the greatest tip I could give.”