Strategies for Managing Suppliers

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Are you working for or own a large organization? Then you most likely have tens if not hundreds of suppliers, and each poses a certain percentage of risk to your company operations, customers, and the brand. Again, managing those many business partners is a challenging task that will take your attention, time, and resources. You are intimately linked with your suppliers, and that means whatever they do affects your business. 

In that regard, you should be in a position to monitor, collaborate and manage the entire supply base more broadly and effectively. 

Following are tips on managing your suppliers to ensure you get value and minimize risks.

Single communication target many

How you communicate with your non-strategic suppliers will determine how effective you are in managing suppliers in your organization. One of the critical things that will help you achieve this is automating your systems to address the communication to specific supply base segments without creating individual emails. Instead, look for a system that targets your communications easily and quickly to your target group. 

Centralized access to information

When you have to respond to anything in the supply chain, you should be able to do that right away. You may not have the time to check through different records in different places. That’s why you need to keep all the information in a central place so immediately you need it, you can access it. You have to look for an easy way to aggregate and centralize business information so you don’t have those many folders which will give you a ‘hell of a time when trying to retrieve. 

Allow suppliers to manage their information

Suppose you want to be effective in your operations. The suppliers you have need an easy time to deliver what they have for the benefit of your organization. If it is hard to access necessary information, that could mean delayed delivery. In that case, you should have supplier management in the supply chain system that allows the suppliers to update information anytime from their end. That ensures that the information is fresh, and you also can access it and make appropriate decisions. 

Get the information right

Errors and reworks are what downplay any organization’s efforts. You need an automated workflow to ensure the buying team can approve changes on elements on supplier-provided information. This you do through an intuitive dashboard allowing the buyer or category manager to access approval stands quickly. On the other hand, Sellers need their platform where they can keep track of contracts, update profiles, attach certificates and files, and receive further communications, including reminders. 

Understand and honor contractual obligations

Your organization must have confidence that the supplier will deliver what they’ve been paid for. The supplier on the other hand needs to have confidence that they’ll be remunerated fairly. When you have respect for the contract, both sides honor their obligations, and therefore, you must ensure that the vendor contracts have clear terms and conditions. 

It’s imperative to understand that managing supplier relationships is a smart way of doing business. Thus you can expect perfect deliveries, and you’ll see results. 


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