How to effectively manage suppliers with slow response speed?

By justchinait
December 10, 2020

In work, the purchaser develops a product or initiates a new project, involving more than a dozen suppliers.

Under normal circumstances, different material types will have different lead times (Lead Time). The supplier with the longest delivery time directly determines the overall progress of product development and the project, and the supplier’s demand for procurement. The response speed determines the supplier’s delivery cycle.

For example, a new type of equipment initially planned to be assembled at the beginning of the month, rolled off the production line at the middle of the month, and launched at the end of the month, due to the slow response speed of individual suppliers, unable to complete the production and delivery of materials and parts within the scheduled time, will directly lead to the production and marketing plan of the equipment, Has a significant impact on the entire supply chain.

Besides, some suppliers cannot provide timely feedback on the progress after receiving the procurement requirements. Each time they need to continually urge the purchaser to call or send e-mails to get the progress results, there is still no useful feedback even after repeated urges. Or the feedback information is not clear at all, such as I strive for delivery within two or three days; I have urged our production line to work overtime; our quality inspectors are conducting inspections. Even some suppliers will reply: this matter, I also I don’t know; I have tried my best, and I can’t help it. Or something.

The supplier’s slow response speed is mainly due to the following reasons:

1. The supplier’s internal system and process are not perfect.

The supplier’s private information transmission and the division of responsibilities are not clear, resulting in reduced internal communication, and different departments shirk their responsibilities. The buyer’s needs cannot be responded to in the fastest time. The supplier’s corporate culture also determines this, and The atmosphere is directly determined.

2. The business personnel on the supplier side are not very responsible and irresponsible.

Some business personnel cannot verify and confirm the purchaser’s requirements for the first time, fail to communicate the purchase requirements internally in time, and find a bunch of reasons to defend themselves when they fail to make the promise.

3. The purchaser’s poor management of the second- and third-tier suppliers.

First-tier suppliers outsource many semi-finished parts to second-tier suppliers, such as surface treatment and other processes. Because the supply chain is too long, the purchaser cannot effectively manage the secondary and tertiary suppliers. The poor management of first-tier suppliers has led to the loss of control of the entire supplier management system.

Suppliers with slow response speed should be managed from the following aspects:

1. Suppose internal processes and systems slow the response speed. In that case, the purchaser can forcefully urge top-down suppliers to shorten the supplier’s internal response time and processing speed as much as possible.

2. For the slow response caused by the supplier’s business personnel’s weak sense of responsibility and inadequate responsibility, if similar situations occur frequently, the purchaser should request the supplier to replace it and directly replace the docking business personnel.

3. Due to the delay caused by the ineffective management of the second-tier and third-tier suppliers, the purchaser should strengthen the audit and management of the second-tier suppliers. If necessary, intervene in the management of the third-tier suppliers.

For suppliers with long-term slow responses, long-term continuous improvement measures, and alternative supplier development plans should be formulated to ensure the entire supply chain’s stability and efficiency.

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