How to Choose the Best Supplier for Your Business

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Depending upon the type of business that you’re running you may need to think about a supplier and who will perform that function the best for you. The following contributed post is entitled, How to Choose the Best Supplier for Your Business.

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The relationship a business has with its supplier(s) is extremely important for everyone’s success. As a business, the management you have over your suppliers can reduce costs and foster innovation within your company, and beyond.

Having the right supplier on board can also help you to streamline your business, since you know what to expect from them and you don’t have to worry about unnecessary waiting or a lack of communication.

Unfortunately, not every supplier is transparent and communicative, so it’s important to choose the right ones for your business needs. But, how can you make sure you’re choosing the best supplier?


Make Your Criteria Clear

You can save yourself a lot of time, hassle, and stress by setting out your own personal criteria that your suppliers need to have before you even start looking. By having a concrete list, you can eliminate certain suppliers right away and, again, streamline the process. Some examples of what your criteria might be could include common issues like:

● Minimum/maximum order quantities
● Lead time
● How items are stored and handled
● Frequency of communication
● Payment terms
● Return policies

Having a list like this makes it easy to narrow down your suppliers and gives you the opportunity to ask them all the right questions when you’re trying to decide on someone new. In some cases, you’ll be able to learn a lot about specific suppliers by comparing the information on their website to your criteria. For example, James Duva Inc. offers a lot of straight-forward information right on their website when it comes to alloy industrial products. Look for suppliers who aren’t afraid to tell you what they offer upfront.

Create a Concrete Process

Once you have your criteria in place, you can put together a process that you will use each time you’re looking for a new supplier.

Will you make your list of criteria public to your potential suppliers? Will you call for bids or approach companies directly?

One of the easiest ways to create a process and put it in motion is to delegate experienced members of your team to handle these tasks. Think about the people who could best handle proposals or interview potential suppliers, and either give them the opportunity to make the decision or narrow down the list.

Monitor Supplier Performance

Remember, whether you accept a bid or approach a supplier yourself, you’re not necessarily stuck with them forever. That’s why it’s so important to understand the terms of any contract you sign into with a supplier.

Make it known ahead of time that you will be monitoring progress. As a business, you should have the right to bow out if your supplier isn’t meeting your expectations.

This is, once again, why it’s so important to have a direct line of communication with your supplier. If something goes wrong, you should be able to contact them at any time and get the answers you deserve. The best suppliers won’t have a problem being transparent and committed to fixing any issues as quickly as possible.

Author: anwaryusef

Anwar Y. Dunbar is a Regulatory Scientist. Being a naturally curious person, he is also a student of all things. He earned his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Michigan and his Bachelor’s Degree in General Biology from Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU). Prior to starting the Big Words Blog Site, Anwar published and contributed to numerous research articles in competitive scientific journals reporting on his research from graduate school and postdoctoral years. After falling in love with writing, he contributed to the now defunct, and the Edvocate where he regularly wrote about: Education-related stories/topics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Financial Literacy; as well as conducted interviews with notable individuals such as actor and author Hill Harper. Having many influences, one of his most notable heroes is author, intellectual and speaker, Malcolm Gladwell, author of books including Outliers and David and Goliath. Anwar has his hands in many, many activities. In addition to writing, Anwar actively mentors youth, works to spread awareness of STEM careers, serves on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the David M. Brown Arlington Planetarium, serves as Treasurer for the JCSU Washington, DC Alumni Chapter, and is active in the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace Ministry at the Alfred Street Baptist Church. He also tutors in the subjects of biology, chemistry and physics. Along with his multi-talented older brother Amahl Dunbar (designer of the Big Words logos, inventor and a plethora of other things), Anwar is a “Fanboy” and really enjoys Science-Fiction and Superhero movies including but not restricted to Captain America Civil War, Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Prometheus. He is a proud native of Buffalo, NY.

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