No matter which kind of business you are in, having a great relationship with a supplier is key to the effectiveness of your operation. With that being said, finding the right supplier for your , your vehicles, your stationary or whatever other need your business has, is not always easy.
It is however, worth putting in the work to find the very best supplier for you as if you are able to create a strong relationship with a great supplier, it can pay dividends throughout your years in business. If you are in the process of looking for a supplier for your business, here are some tips on how you can get it just right.
The first step when searching for a supplier is to understand exactly what your needs are and what you are looking for in the supplier for your business. You need to know what kind of lead times you are expecting from each of your orders, what kind of sized orders you are looking for, what kind of deliveries methods you need as well as any kind of quality assurances that you are looking for and of course, pricing and payment structures. Once you understand what your needs are with regards to a supplier, you will be better placed to actually go out and find it.
Call For Bids
Remember that you can actually attract the interest for suppliers if you put out a call for bids. This is not to say that you will not have to do your homework beforehand so that you have a rough idea of what kind of supplier it is that you are looking for. Suppliers are always on the lookout for new clients and through the process of a request for proposal or a request for quotation, you can bring the suppliers to you.
Once you have all of the bids in, you need to spend some time on reviewing what each supplier can bring to the table. This is where your criteria will come in useful and you should be reviewing how each of the suppliers that has bid, can assist you in finding the requirements that you are looking for. Once you have compared the checklist which you have made against what each individual supplier can do for you, it is time to start whittling down the list and finding the right supplier for you.
Just because you have decided on a particular supplier, this is not to say that you have definitely made the right decision. Make sure that your first contract with the supplier is short term and that you can get out of it if the service is not up to scratch. You should make sure that you have a solid review structure in place for whichever supplier you decide upon so that you can ensure that performance is monitored and that you can ensure the products, delivery and all round service is up to scratch.