Suppliers

Tool for maximized supply security and reduced costs: Useful?

Procurement/purchasing professionals no doubt deal with a variety of suppliers and purchasing strategies.  30 years ago a new approach was introduced by Peter Kraljic.  His model, the Kraljic Portfolio Purchasing Model, seeks to gain better control over the entire range of purchased items, to some extent regardless of the annual spend associated with each. If you have experience with the Kraljic Portfolio Purchasing Model, we would be particularly interested to learn of your experiences and… Read More


Pareto’s Principle for Suppliers

Pareto’s Principle, the 80-20 rule, is usefully applied in many business situations.  Customer service, sales efforts, employee management and even the structure of the supply chain are all areas where applications are recommended, and success reported.  There is abundant literature on the value of such applications, and lots of available advice on how to do so as well as claims of great benefits. One such supplier-related article, in Industry Week, begins with this: “Kevin Mixer,… Read More


Supplier Evaluations? How about Customer evaluations?

Supplier evaluations is a common LinkedIn group discussion.  Since Proficient Sourcing’s business is to help identify appropriate and excellent manufacturing suppliers, these discussions are of particular interest. Our work typically involves generating candidates for new supply situations.  In this case, evaluation criteria are focused on price and delivery, with an assumption of appropriate quality.  As time moves on, other factors come into play. These other factors include meeting promised dates, effective communications, how problems are… Read More


Supplier Visit

Many sources recommend visiting suppliers as often as practical. The main reasons appear to be relationship building and the opportunity to discuss cost/scrap/quality and other production details that can be problematic. We would also suggest carefully looking at the production floor itself. Some questions should be on a list of what to look for: 1)  Do the operating instructions you see make sense and describe what is to be done? 2) What is measured at… Read More


The Supplier “Fires” a Customer! Now A New Supplier is Needed–FAST

Proficient Sourcing exists to help buyers find excellent custom manufacturing suppliers. Occasionally the buyer’s company has issues that impede a good search, and in those cases we can have a very helpful role. Here’s an example: Recently we were contacted to assist in a situation where a supplier wanted to “fire” a customer. Ultimately we were able to find an effective solution and the result is all parties are happy. The supplier no longer has… Read More


Creating Shareholder Value from Supplier Relationships

As the complexity of supplier relationships increases, so does risk and reward. Following important and time-tested principles will help ensure your supplier networks work for you. That seems to be what Directworks, a Pennsylvania company that offers sourcing software that’s purpose-built for direct materials sourcing, had in mind with a very thought-provoking article, “Creating Shareholder Value from Supplier Relationships”. Here is the introduction to that article: “In any business, the creation of shareholder value is… Read More


The Proficient Sourcing Method Assists Buyers

Proficient Sourcing helps buyers find good custom manufacturing suppliers.  To accomplish this we access a large and varied network of proven job shops, selected because of a history of on-time delivery of parts built to spec at competitive prices.  We are paid by this network, so there is no cost to the buyer who desires our help finding the right supplier.  Our recommendations come with no obligation. When you need a new manufacturing supplier we… Read More


Key Performance Indicators for Suppliers

A number of procurement consultants’ websites and discussion groups deal with factors that define a good supplier. Several factors are mentioned most often in addition to price. This is particularly relevant to Proficient Sourcing, as we are in the business of providing supplier candidates to OEM buyers, and are acutely aware of the need for excellent performance. On time delivery is always among the most valued factors. With new suppliers, the buyer has only the… Read More


Single Sourcing vs Multiple Sources for Custom Manufacturing

Both sides of this issue have emerged in our efforts to help buyers with suitable candidates for manufactured items. We’ve worked both sides—insistence on a sole source as well as finding competitors for a multiple source situation. So we have thoughts on the subject and hope you will offer additional ones in the comments below. First, a single source success story: we were asked to find a sole source for an automotive project. The project… Read More