Finding the Very Best Supplier—Another Factor to Consider

A recent article dealt with the value to buyers of long term supplier relationships. Another article asked whether big savings meant prior buyers were not performing well. Both articles focus on relationships created at a specific time of a buyer’s need. By omitting a simple step the best potential long term supplier may be overlooked. Job shops’ available capacity rises and falls with the demands of their main customers. When a new buyer seeks candidates,… Read More

Big company arrogance—or not?

There was a report about a Fortune 500 company’s plan to change the payment arrangements with their suppliers. We thought this plan was counter-productive. While we have not heard any follow up news, perhaps you can provide commentary in our blog whether or not you see the likelihood this plan will have a positive outcome for ANY side. The report noted the announcement of a new policy in order to raise money for investment in… Read More

5 Tips for Negotiating with Suppliers

In 2012 Inc magazine published the article “13 Tips for Negotiating with Suppliers” with this lead-in: “The Young Entrepreneur Council asked 13 successful young entrepreneurs for their advice about negotiating with suppliers”. The Young Entrepreneur Council is an invitation-only non-profit group founded in 2010. We figured the YEC would be an excellent source of insights, although they would not necessarily include supply chain professionals. Nonetheless, here are 5 of the tips from this article, with… Read More

Technological Changes Influencing Today’s Supply Chains

“Five technology trends are shaping a future where mobility, integration, complexity, and competition will be the defining characteristics of successful supply chain strategy”. So begins the thought-provoking lead article from the Council of Supply Chain Management Professional’s (CSCMP) 4th quarter 2014 Supply Chain Quarterly. The Council’s research, supported by Penn State’s Small College of Business’s Center for Supply Chain Research, “identified 5 game-changing technologies and related emerging trends for supply chains”. Proficient Sourcing is vitally… Read More

Complicated Procurement Projects? Bring them On!

In your procurement world there may be occasions where you need more than some candidates to answer a RFQ. Smaller companies might need design or scientific material advice. Large projects may require interplay between prospective suppliers. Rather then hire some consulting firm to handle such situations, please consider Proficient Sourcing. Two recent examples illustrate the Proficient Sourcing advantage available to any interested buyer, engineer or other person seeking a more complex sourcing answer. The first… Read More

Strategic Procurement: A Transformation is Occurring

A revolution [began] about 10 years ago as procurement came into focus as a game-changer for companies with the potential to add direct value to the bottom line.   “…when done well, procurement can transform the way an organization operates”. And so we begin 2015 with some thoughts from Supply & Demand Chain Executive’s November, 2014 issue.  The lead article is “Striving for Procurement Excellence”, and you can find a link to the entire article below…. Read More

Want Suppliers Help with Innovation? Just ask!

According to numerous websites and Linkedin groups, developing more sophisticated and innovative supplier relationships is on many OEM buyers’ agendas. We have a white paper on this very subject, available at here Developing such supplier relationships is probably most common with the most important and large suppliers. However, this may be opportunity lost. Many small manufacturing companies are managed by people who are latent inventors, driven internally to diagnose how things work and then how… Read More

Low Cost Innovation—the hidden benefit!

Your suppliers may be a low cost path to ongoing and effective innovation. Here’s a quote from a thought provoking article from the Procurement Leaders 8/26/14 blog: “Properly managed and incentivized by procurement, suppliers can be a great source of innovation. In fact, in some companies, supplier-initiated innovation happens regularly through such things as suggested design alternatives, alternative manufacturing approaches, even ideas on streamlining internal processes.” If you are fortunate enough to have such a supplier… Read More

Real Buyer-Seller Situation

Today we present a real buyer-seller situation in process.  Our opinion is we are missing something, and encourage you to offer opinions, suggestions, and advice on our blog. Proficient Sourcing helps companies find suitable supplier candidates for custom manufacturing.  We have had a superficial relationship with an OEM making very precise products that use a variety of close tolerance metal parts.  We are interested in competing for this machining business, and have quoted a few… Read More

Beware of Killing a Golden Supplier Goose!

Do you, the customer, take steps to ensure your suppliers’ margins are satisfactory?  The subject of supplier margins was a recent article from Directworks,  a company that provides sourcing and supplier management solutions purpose-built for manufacturers.  The main point was that just like the customer, the supplier company must be profitable.  Accomplishing that should be in the interest of BOTH sides if there is any interest in a long term healthy relationship.  Our opinion on… Read More