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  • Bryan Whiting

7 Supply Chain Management Tips

Managing your supply chain is one of the most important day to day activities that a company does. Daily oversight and finding more efficiency in your supply chain pays dividends financially as well as with your end customer and their respective satisfaction. Below are 7 tips in managing your supply chain:

1. Choose the right suppliers

Make your requirements clear to your suppliers from the outset. Choose suppliers who adhere to established standards for safety performance, are the right size to supply the company’s needs, and produce consistent quality.

2. Have multiple suppliers for each product

Never rely on just one supplier for each product. You never know when a natural disaster can happen like a fire or flood. Additionally, the supplier could run into labor issues or have issues within their own supply chain. Always have more than one supplier per product so you are prepared for the worst-case scenario.

3. Communicate regularly

No surprises – keep your suppliers in constant communication and forecasting. Sit down with them, let them know what is coming, what you are planning down the road. This ongoing dialogue helps build loyalty. This is critical and builds a much-improved collaboration in your supply chain management for solutions.

4. Build mutual trust

By constantly communicating, your suppliers will be more likely to help you out if your company needs something in a hurry. Communicating builds trust and avoids last minute scrambling and fire drills. It will not eliminate rushed jobs entirely but make your suppliers more likely to move mountains to get things done if you have mutual trust.

5. Do not penalize honest mistakes

Do not create hardship for your suppliers. Everyone can make a mistake. Be understanding but be direct when something goes wrong and work with them to get a solution. Your supplier will appreciate this and be more willing to help you out when you make a mistake in forecasting or have an unforeseen challenge where you need your suppliers help.

6. Negotiate pricing

Suppliers who know what to expect in terms of upcoming business do not have to be constantly on the lookout for new contracts. This translates into preferential treatment on pricing. This ties into your ability to communicate and forecast demand. A consistent communication around your supply chain allows your supplier to forecast demand and revenues, which helps manage cash flow for them and should provide better pricing for you in your supply chain partnership.

7. Consider placing ongoing orders

Ongoing orders help maintain the manufacturing flow. Keep a good cadence of order flow and this will help you and your supplier to keep ready stock on hand and deliver consistently to your end customer. Once you tell a customer your company will deliver on a certain date, you want to make sure that happens.

If you have any questions, please contact us at We offer the best practices in warehousing, trucking, and order fulfillment. We are strategically located in the heart of the west and offer industry leading facilities and customer service for any logistics need.

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