How to Evaluate Suppliers and Shippers

A major factor in the health and profitability of your business is your relationship with the suppliers and vendors that will be supplying you and your customers with services and products. Nowadays when competition is so strong, and time is of the essence, it’s a bigger factor than ever to have a handle on the vendors and suppliers who work with you. You most certainly need systems set up that not only allow you to determine whether or not a particular vendor may be right for you, but also keep your business properly protected. This goes for online businesses also, especially if you are outsourcing services.

Evaluating your vendors or suppliers from the very beginning!

Taking the time to research a potential vendors resume is best done at the outset, so you can avoid as many problems as you possibly can. Know the answers to questions like these:

  • How long have they been in business?
  • How many employees do they have?
  • How well are they doing?
  • Ask to speak to current and former customers, and if there is any hesitance, reconsider this choice.
  • Who would you be working with, and what kind of guarantee is there that they’ll come through for you?
  • What happens when there is an emergency?
  • How hungry are you for my business?

Put accountability systems in place

Making sure everyone is doing their part is critical in a relationship that uses vendors and suppliers. Additionally, it needs to be a good arrangement for all concerned. Set performance guidelines early on as to what is expected, and adhere rigorously to them. Don’t let weak performance go without challenge. Be sure that the vendor or suppliers you choose have a solid management style in use. You surely want someone there looking after your business for you!

Don’t hesitate to move on!

If it all goes south, and it does in some cases, don’t be reluctant to move on to another vendor or supplier. Give them a chance to correct things with a formal notice, but if it doesn’t get fixed, move on. You can’t afford not to!