Suppliers can either ignite or suffocate your business. Suffocation occurs when supplier performance feedback from stakeholders is not integrated into the procurement process.

Absent of stakeholder feedback, it’s tough for suppliers to know how they’re doing.

As stewards of supplier-stakeholder alignment, it is imperative to maintain an enterprise-wide pulse. With this in mind, here are three ways stakeholder feedback can be used to keep suppliers honest about their performance.

  1. Share it.

    Every employee a supplier touches should be able to view how their feedback compares to colleagues. This makes it easier for each stakeholder to understand how well they are working with suppliers. It also increases the collective team’s ability to identify how to get more value from suppliers. But, in order for this to happen, you have to share the feedback results.

  2. Compare it.

    Sometimes, supplier performance insight resides not within feedback about a specific supplier, but within feedback provided about comparable suppliers –or even suppliers providing service in a different category. When comparing feedback within and across categories, you’re looking for insight on “how” your stakeholders feel about each supplier’s performance. Once you’ve identified specific trends, drill deeper for insight on “why” your stakeholders feel the way that they do.

  3. Keep it fresh.

    When it comes to supplier performance, a lot can change in a short amount of time. More than anything because suppliers can affect so many aspects of your company’s operations. Yet, in many organizations, stakeholder feedback on supplier performance is collected inconsistently and/or infrequently. If the date of feedback received makes you want to “check” with the source to “make sure the feedback is still relevant,” then you’re not requesting it frequently enough.

Enterprises that apply the above mentioned approaches will have less of a need to make assumptions about supplier-stakeholder alignment. As a result, these organizations will be able to better maintain knowledge of where inefficient operations exist, why, and stakeholder suggested insight on how to remove waste from their supplier relationships.

Related “How-To” Resources (click one to read…)

  1. How to Avoid the Supplier Relationship Gap

  2. How to Audit you Supplier Performance Feedback Process

  3. How Procurement can Engage Internal Stakeholders