Oct 01 2010
Suppliers with a company that has largely determine its success. Having good suppliers have not only means quality inputs (and therefore able to offer quality products), but it also means to keep costs down, or the security of knowing that we can supply us with products every time you ask it.
So each time we have to choose our suppliers, we take our time, and find and select it to them.
The first step in the search and selection of suppliers is to find all potential suppliers that might have, get all the necessary information from them, evaluate them according to specific criteria and, finally, select the provider or providers best suited for company.
Let’s see in detail each of the steps that make the search process and selection of suppliers:
1. Provider Search
The process of search and selection of suppliers begins with the search for suppliers that provide inputs, products or services we require.
To search for providers can go to various sources, some of these are:
* Known: people we can recommend suppliers, either because they are known to be or have been in business similar to ours, or for any other reason.
* Employees of the company: workers likely to know suppliers that have previously been employed in their former jobs.
* Competition: compete with companies to which we can investigate to find out what their suppliers.
* Newspapers, magazines and trade publications, media where several suppliers are often your ads.
* Internet search engines, classified ads, directories, forums, chambers of commerce, business associations, etc.
* Yellow Pages.
* Trade or specialized exhibitions.
A search of suppliers, we can rule out a pre-selection where suppliers do not meet basic requirements such as product quality, or exceeding the maximum price we are willing to pay, so that we can develop a list of providers not as extensive.
2. Determine selection criteria
In this step, we proceed to determine the selection criteria we consider when evaluating potential suppliers and then select the right choice.
Some of the key selection criteria we consider are:
* Price: The price of their products, the costs could be added to it, the discounts that we could bestow.
* Quality: the quality of inputs, products or services offered.
* Term of payment: the payment terms we offer, if we are asked to pay cash, or give us credit facilities to pay.
* Deadlines: the time from order to do what we deliver.
* Warranties: the guarantees provided and the duration thereof.
* Reputation: The reputation and good referrals you have.
More selection criteria can be found in the article: supplier selection criteria.
3. Obtaining information from suppliers
Once we have prepared our list of suppliers, and determined the selection criteria we will use, we went to collect the necessary information from each supplier, allowing us to evaluate them according to established criteria.
In addition to the means by which we come to know the supplier, other ways in which we can obtain information from providers may be:
* Requesting information: either asks for it directly, for example, your salespeople, representatives, etc… (For example, we ask them about their experience, their work done, its main clients, etc.). Or ask for it via e-mail or letter (for example, we request information about their pricing, product features, ease of payment, request you to send brochures, pricing, etc.)…
* Visit: to obtain information from potential suppliers can also opt to visit their companies and watch, for example, the performance of its staff, its organization, customer service, infrastructure, etc..
* Searching for references, we can also find references, for example, we find out who they are or have been clients, contact and consult for their views, opinions or satisfaction they have with respect to the provider.
* Visiting its website: a quick and easy way to get information from the potential supplier is to visit your website, where you can also get the information they include in it, you can analyze your page to give us an idea of the company, neglected page, it is likely to mean a sloppy business.
* Testing: another way to obtain information from potential supplier, is put to the test, for example, requesting a sample, making an order and assess whether they meet deadlines, hire them to produce a small amount of products, etc.