A company’s relationship with its suppliers is one of the most important in business. Without supplies, your company couldn’t survive. However, even though this relationship is so important, many companies may not always deal with their suppliers in the right way, and this can cause resentment and unhappiness. If you think that your supplier’s relationships could be better, then here are a few tips to point you in the right direction.
Suppliers Are Not Just Vendors
One of the key things to remember about your suppliers is that they are not just your vendors, they are your partners. The partnership isn’t just based on financial transactions; it is also based on mutual trust and respect that will hopefully breed loyalty. You want your suppliers to feel that they are an integral part of the company and that their opinions and ideas matter. It is important to realize that they are a company just like yours and that they rely on companies like you to keep them afloat. Learn to discuss your objectives with them, and what your plans are for the future. You might find that they have ideas that can help you.
Use Technology to Help
In the past, there have sometimes been issues with keeping any orders, receipts, and invoices up to date with vendors. That is because they were often sent by fax or even sent by mail, which often caused delays and orders being lost. With new technology, you can make your ordering and invoice process a lot easier for you and your suppliers. There is now new supplier management software that can not only keep track of your orders but also allow you to send invoices and payments instantly. It is things like this that can help your vendors manage their own accounts and build trust.
Be Respectful with Contracts
When you are creating a new contract with a supplier or extending an existing one, it is important that you are respectful to your vendors. They also have to make a profit, and so they will be looking to get a good deal from you. Obviously, you don’t want to be paying more for your supplies than you need, but you shouldn’t use your suppliers as a way to save money. Go through your contract with your supplier and detail any contract risk management that you have in place in case things go wrong. It is also important to set out clearly what you expect from your suppliers, and also let them tell you what they expect. If you can be clear from the beginning, then it will avoid any issues in the future.
If you have struggled to keep your relationships with your suppliers strong, then these ideas can help you to get back on track. More than anything else, a good relationship is built on the trust and respect of both companies. If you can both show that you can deliver on your promises, then your relationship should improve.