- A recent survey of buyers, engineers and procurement professionals conducted by Thomas.net reported that delivery performance is the most important part of a company's shortlist when evaluating new suppliers.
- Of the remaining factors after delivery performance, financial stability and industry experience were about equal. Quality certification came fourth, followed by location and value-added services.
- While delivery performance came in first, the importance of reduced risk shouldn't be understated, as 55% of those surveyed called it critically important.
Choosing a new supplier is a risky proposition. Here are some warning signs to apply.
Is there often something wrong? Delays can occur within any system, and they're often nobody's fault. Yet, recurring delays that can't be verified are often a sign of disorganization, no matter how many apologies or promises of future perfection are offered.
No ownership. When something goes wrong, does the supplier take responsibility? Does she or he acknowledge the error and make it right? Or, does the fault always lie elsewhere?
Reliable inspection dates and results. When an inspection is due, is the supplier ready and willing? Does he keep to his promise to be ready, or does she claim there must have been a mistake somehow, and are you sure you have the right date?
Are needed materials always on hand? If not, it could be a sign that the suppliers' own bills aren't being paid, causing him to come up short and resulting in a delay for you. A company that doesn't pay its bills isn't a reliable source with which to do business.