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How good are your suppliers?

December 1 2009 by Peter Czapp

In this current economic climate, everyone wants to see added value from their spend and to know that their suppliers are providing them with the best possible service.

We have outlined our 5 Cornerstones of Added Value, which we feel  every business should consider, to guarantee they are fully benefiting  from their relationship with their suppliers. The 5 Cornerstones of Added Value are: 

  • Proactivity: Are they proactive or do you need to chase them?  
  • Accuracy: Does your supplier deliver what they say they will on time?  
  • Communication: Do they contact you regularly  to ensure you’re satisfied with their service? Do you feel that you have  a relationship with them? 
  • Transparency: Are you ever charged surprise fees? 
  • Value: Do you feel you are getting value for your money? 

Rate your suppliers

 To find out if you are getting real value from your suppliers, pick  the supplier that has the biggest overall impact upon the success of  your business. Now rate them out of 5 (with 5 being the highest) for  each of the 5 Cornerstones of added value, and add these scores up….

If you scored between 0 and 10

We would recommend  you review the relationship with this supplier immediately.
From the  score you’ve given, it doesn’t look like you are getting the best service, or the best value for your business. If there are particular issues you are not happy with, speak to your supplier first, before you consider if you need to look for a new supplier. Clearly state the issues you have and how you want these to be resolved. Business Link give have some useful advice for picking the right supplier and reviewing your suppliers’ performance, click here to read more.

If you scored between 11 and 18

This isn’t a bad score, but it isn’t a great score either.
In this economic climate you  really need to be working with suppliers who are delivering on each of the 5 Cornerstones of Added Value. Speak to your supplier, raise the issues you have with them. Find out more about building good relationships with suppliers here.

If you scored between 19 and 25

You seem to have a good supplier relationship and are getting good value from them. This is a relationship worth nurturing and we would encourage you to continue to review your suppliers on an ad hoc basis, to ensure you continue to benefit from such a positive service.

We’ve discussed suppliers to your business, but what about what about household expenditure, e.g. gas, electric, internet, banking? Are you getting added value from these suppliers too? The links below might be useful in finding this out:

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