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Managing Suppliers and All That Jazz……

By Poulami Mukherjee
In Procurement Technology
Apr 11th, 2016

A disciplined process of maintaining buyer supplier relationships dates back in history, during early 1900s, post ‘World War One’ excessive demand for goods forced many companies to increase their number of suppliers to cater to the growing needs. In 1960’s and 70’s the relationship was categorized as “arm’s length approach” which meant price oriented buying. But by the start of 90’s, the buyers and suppliers increased their dealings comprising of both innovation and cooperation, this gave rise to an era which was defined by the term “partnership”. However, today many organizations have moved forward and have taken an approach of more cooperative relationship with suppliers.


Although, times have changed remarkably and we have come a long way from categorizing suppliers just on the basis of pricing, we find a lot of new issues cropping up every now and then.

Firms compete in head to head battles for market share these days. This forces the buyer to treat suppliers in a confrontational manner, as most of the time the relationship is viewed under the win/lose microscope. Hence, the relationship needs to be more strategic in nature, where the divisions of suppliers are firms that provide strategic products or services or those who purchase large quantities of finished goods.

This has brought about the concept of supplier positioning, where suppliers are classified on the basis of product value and risk. Suppliers are now treated like an asset that needs to be valued and managed strategically.


In our next Webinar (partnered with ISM), we are going to discuss the issue of “Finding ROSA (Return On Supplier Assets) – Valuing and Managing Suppliers Strategically”.

Join the webinar and find out –


  • Are the right people maintaining your supplier information –  is supplier self- service a realistic option?
  • How many is too many – how do I right-size my supply base?
  • Becoming your supplier’s “customer of choice” – are you making it easier or harder for your supplier to do business with you?
  • You get what you measure – so how do I know if my supplier scorecard has the right KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)?
  • What keeps you awake at night when it comes to supplier risk – how do you mitigate that risk (and get some rest)?
  • Supplier diversity – how do I move beyond program goals to maximize value contribution?
  • It’s not enough to want to “tap supplier innovation” – what are the most effective collaboration and valuation mechanisms to make the procurement/supplier partnership rewarding for all parties?

Date and Time – 28th April 2016, 11.30Am EST

Speaker – Richard Waugh, Vice President , Corporate Development

Register Now



About "" Has 20 Posts

By day she works as a marketing professional with Zycus, and when she is not working she writes poetry that she would never publish, sings songs making sure nobody ever listens, devises strategies to fight a zombie apocalypse that she believes is near and buys geeky collectibles which are her most treasured possession.

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