It’s well-worn business advice that communication is vital for your success. But this tip, when applied to your supply chain in particular, makes perfect sense. If you lack smart, swift and sensible communication with your suppliers, then you’ll be sacrificing a certain amount of fluidity and efficiency in your output. Meanwhile, those companies with the best communication techniques are usually those which find greater success. That’s because their B2B relationships are more professional and trusting, and their feedback loops are better-constructed. To apply better communication to your business, see the tips outlined in the article below.
Training and education for your workforce are fundamental in your promotion of quality communication throughout your company. The more individuals that receive training – on phone manner, email etiquette, and other software management – the more you’ll be able to build a network that runs back to your supply chain. You will have a network that’s savvy in its communication methods.
Keep Others in the Loop
Unless you have a designated individual who works with all your suppliers – a rare scenario – it’s important for all relevant parties to be kept in the loop. Suppliers will often have messages to deliver to your company regarding their operations; you’ll also find you need to increase or decrease your demand for their products over time. The best way to manage these fluctuations is always to keep relevant individuals in the loop. A simple forwarded or CC’ed email can do the trick here, or regular team meetings.
SAP Supplier Portals
Another way to help you communicate with your suppliers is through software. In the digital age, businesses tend to rely heavily on these wonderful efficiency-drivers: they’re simple to onboard and provide real-time data to help you analyse your B2B relationships.
Omnia Ecommerce, for instance, offer SAP Supplier Portals that take account of the complexities of your supply chain, sending you the data that matters for you to make informed decisions that are thenceforth related through communication to your suppliers. Through real-time, quality data, your supply chain can increase efficiencies so that your business can make better-informed decisions.
As a business leader, you’ll be well aware of the value of a well-developed personal relationship. It helps you build trust and even friendship across the business world. And when it comes to your supply chain, it’s always worth working that little bit of magic with your corresponding business leader so that you’re operating on a base of mutual respect and admiration.
Deploy your networking skills so that if you ever need to call in a favour, you’re more likely that it be granted by your suppliers. However, be sure not to abuse your relationships, as calling in too many favours can do the opposite.
The final tip for improving supplier communication is to send a regular and routine update between your business and that of your suppliers. It doesn’t need to be long – it just needs to contain all the information that they need to plan their own business operations. Of course, these messages are all the more important if they convey that you’re going to need to adjust your level of supply. Make sure to mark these as urgent, and use eye-catching text, if this is the case.