September 7, 2018

New Suppliers

We experience new inquiries continuously and believe results for all sides could be improved.  People exploring new suppliers with RFQ’s may not get the response desired.  Suppliers may no-bid an inquiry, despite the fact that the work would be an excellent fit.  Why is this?

As the economy improves, it’s a rising tide that raises (almost) all boats.  What this means is the potentially new suppliers have less time to fully consider new customer requirements.  In fact, there may be more pressure on the estimating resources, requiring some priority actions that may work against the new opportunity.

Proficient Sourcing’s business is to supply excellent supplier candidates to buyers, engineers, and others interested in finding new outsourcing sources for manufactured items.  We can almost always provide a credible candidate, and often multiple candidates for a wide variety of requirements.  Here is a listing of most of our capabilities.

However, we cannot force a suitable candidate to submit a bid on pending work.  Recently we received a lengthy request for quote for a large number of parts needed by an equipment OEM.  This was a relatively new contact, and while we had a candidate bid on previous custom one-off projects, this latest RFQ involved an extensive list of complex parts needed for their production of standard parts (repeat order likely!!).  The work was a good fit for 2 shops, but a quote was needed in a very short time.

The result was a no-bid by both candidates. One sent this explanation:

“It will be nice to get some work from them.  Seems like they already have some good suppliers and we compete on price.  Tough to complete on price when the parts are complex and we have not run them before.  I made the call to let the package ship [slip] as we are a bit backed up in the quote department and I prioritized where I thought our likelihood of getting the work is greater”.

Both declining companies told us the work looked very attractive, but given it was complex and difficult, they did not have adequate estimating resources to generate a quote for the work by the deadline.

It is unknowable if either shop would have generated a successful quote, but in this case neither the OEM nor either shop will know.  One possibility is a good business relationship will never develop.  Is this necessary or could the OEM have done something to increase the chances of getting quotes?  In this case there was a time element at play that made the situation especially difficult.   Absent that, we have written several articles that suggest things an OEM could consider to increase quote generation:

Are You a “Customer of Choice” to Your Suppliers?

New Suppliers — Free Engineering and More!

So the bottom line here is for buyers seeking new suppliers to anticipate increasing difficulty getting responses.  If better results are desired, we recommend several things that might work!  The ball’s in your court!

About the author 

Charlie Harte

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