One of the steps in building a business is finding your suppliers. Selecting your suppliers goes beyond the quality of the products they offer. It requires trust and rapport.
Your suppliers play a significant role in your company— from providing it with the resources needed for the daily operation of your business to supplying raw materials for the production process.
Managing supplier relationships is a work on its own. It should be viewed as a partnership, a relationship rooted in mutual respect as both parties are on equal footing. Building this relationship, however, is worth it.
Working with a single supplier, or two, instead of multiple ones can pave the way to stronger partnership and reduced cost. This is why choosing a company that can supply numerous materials can lead to your advantage. For instance, a company called Boost Up offers different apparels for different seasons. You will not be faced with the difficulty of having various suppliers per season.
When you work with suppliers as partners, you can collaborate with each other in fostering innovation. Communication comes naturally as a way of improving each other’s services. But before you get there, you have to think of the supplier’s qualities before drafting the contract. Here is a guide in finding a good supplier:
A supplier with a history
Find a supplier that has been in the business long enough. However, make sure that it’s business practices have progressed over time. Ask around and see if the supplier manages to retain its good reputation. Consistent output and services indicate stability, a necessity when you create a partnership.
A supplier that is accessible
Literally and figuratively. Consider the location when you choose a supplier. Deliberate as well if the supplier is open for suggestions. The distance can cause added cost and longer delivery time, so opt for a supplier that is located conveniently from your business.
A supplier that rates fairly
It’s a no-brainer that price plays an important role in choosing a supplier. It’s okay to ask your probable supplier for deals, especially if your goal is to engage in a long-term partnership. However, constantly haggling and failing to pay your bills on time will turn this partnership sour. Keep in mind that your suppliers are businesses, too. It’s better to support each other.
A supplier that adapts
A business that continues to improve and develop based on the trends in the industry it is part of is a sign of a good supplier. Incorporating technology in the products and services your supplier offers assures you of its capability to adapt in the changing times. This adaptability is oftentimes reflected on the way your supplier’s employees are trained, giving you a seamless service in every transaction. Other than that, you can take advantage of technology’s contribution to the quality and speed of production.
A supplier that listens
As mentioned, a supplier relationship is a partnership. Working together is beneficial for the growth of both businesses- theirs and yours. Find a supplier you can collaborate with. It is important to choose a supplier that can address the particular needs of your company.
It pays to form a partnership with your supplier. Loyalty is rare in the business world, but once you find it, it will surely last long.