How to Strengthen Your Vendor-Supplier Relationship

The life of your company relies on having the products you need at the time that you need them to handle the influx of customer orders that comes pouring in on a daily basis. You need vendors and suppliers to offer quality products at the best prices and meet delivery deadlines without hiccups in the supply chain system. You don’t want to get stuck with a supplier that takes shortcuts which affects the quality of your products. You also want to avoid the slow vendors who you can never pin down when you need a reliable delivery time yet they are always around when it comes time to pay them.

Build a Strong Vendor-Supplier Relationship

Strengthening your vendor-supplier relationship is paramount to your business. It allows you to select the right supplier, get products at the right costs, and avoid questionable vendors that can compromise your supply chain. For you to build on this relationship, you must first evaluate your strategic sourcing process to determine the key points you use to select suppliers and vendors. Figure out the main factors you use and identify categories that are not sourced yet you want to incorporate into your sourcing plan. Such factors may include:

  • Spending Analysis
  • Marketing Research
  • Data Collection
  • Negotiations
  • Contracting
  • Internal Auditing

Once you understand the data that must be collected, now is the time to evaluate your current sourcing plan. This planning involves using process steps to gather and manage the data, evaluate suppliers and vendors, garner bids, conduct surveys, create bidder reports and refine your supplier registry.

Streamline Your Planning Process

The traditional way of organizing this information was to use paper requests, send out emails and then place all the information into spreadsheets using the request for proposal (RFP) process. This tedious process could hamper your operations, slowing them down as you could be missing out on locating great suppliers, providing effective communication to vendors, and accurately updating data information about product changes.

Upgrading your RFP by automating many of the time-intensive tasks can provide you with more time in building your vendor-supplier relationship. You can locate previously used sourcing data that is difficult to find now, provide the necessary audits with the required information you need, and expand on the categories that you use to decide on the right products to purchase. The advantages of eSourcing software, reverse technology applications and the FlexRFP available from EC Sourcing allows for better vendor-supplier management.

With the available software applications, you can perform automated negotiations and decide which vendors meet your qualifications for the products you want for your company. Keep score cards of suppliers by rating them on several factors including pricing and product variety. Effectively communicate with all those involved with your supply chain and garner necessary feedback that is organized all in one convenient location. Get all the data you need organized in one application as you can customize and improve on your operations.

Organize Tasks to Build Relationships

Once all your sourcing and planning tasks are organized, you can then focus on other objectives in building the relationship with vendors and suppliers. You will be able to pay people on time for products, give better lead times of when you need merchandise to reach your warehouses, create meetings with suppliers, and expand your product line with new offerings to beat out your competitors. Improve communication and information you give to your vendors and suppliers when all the data is within easy reach in your vendor management and sourcing applications.

The longer you wait at building this important business relationship, the more your operations become affected. Obtain the eSourcing software you need and effectively manage your vendors and suppliers to increase your company’s ROI.