TMCnet Feature
December 04, 2020

How to Build a Good Relationship with Your Suppliers



There’s no denying that suppliers are a vital part of any business. Whether you source the products or materials from them, or just use them for basics like office essentials, you’d probably be lost without them.

Relationships form a surprisingly large part of managing a business. You need to form strong relationships with employees, customers, and suppliers. Often, we get so wrapped up in making customers happy that we forget to take the time to form a meaningful relationship with our suppliers. If you’re looking to create a better bond with your supplier, this is the post for you.



Use supplier management software

Supplier management will help you to make sure you choose the right supplier with the right products. With so many different options, it can be hard to choose the right supplier. That’s where supplier management software comes in.

By analyzing data, it can give you information about the risk of choosing a particular supplier. If you’re not sure which supplier is the right fit for you, this is the way to go, since data analysis is an accurate way of narrowing down your options.

Find a balance

Since you’ll likely be dealing with an actual person, rather than a machine, it’s important to find a balance between coming across as professional and coming across as personal. Since it is a business relationship, you’ll always want to remain professional with good workplace etiquette. However, since it is a human relationship, you’ll also need to form some extent of a personal relationship as well.

Finding the balance between these two is key to getting your relationship off to a good start. You need to also set the tone of the relationship quite early on, so that the supplier knows what to expect of you, and vice versa.

Be understanding

If you run a business, you’re probably aware that there are many unexpected problems that can pop up. Keep that in mind if there’s ever an issue with your supplier.

Repeat occurrences are obviously a serious matter and should be dealt with accordingly, but if it was a genuine error or something that was out of their hands, you should be reasonable in how you deal with it. Consider how you would want them to react if the roles were reversed, and go from there.

Be on time

There are two major things you should always do in a timely manner when it comes to suppliers: pay and order. You want to create a relationship built on mutual trust, and that can only be achieved by paying your supplier on time. If you don’t, it could lead to a very strained relationship.

You should also order on time. Order just before you need to receive stock can put a lot of pressure on your supplier, and it’s not really a fair way of going about things. You need to give them enough notice for an order. In order to do this, you need to be aware of how much stock you have, so regular stock take is vital.



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