Last week we reminded you about State of Flux, a provider of Supplier Relationship Management (SRM) software and services, and the initiators of the SRM Research Report that we highlighted in our 3-part series on why you should focus on essentials, plan against the pillars, and be a customer of choice.
Your supply chain success is ultimately dependent on your supply base and their failure is your failure. Your customer doesn’t care why the order is late. He just cares that the order is late. Your customer doesn’t care why the product is crap. He’s just upset that he forked over good money for bad product and only cares what you are going to do about it. Thanks to omni-present supply chain disruptions that are increasing at a rapid rate (to the point that less than 15% of companies will not experience a major supply disruption over the next 12 months), something is going to go wrong. And the question is, do you have a good relationship where your supplier will proactively notify you of a potential disruption so that you can collaboratively work together to prevent it, or a not-so-good relationship where you won’t know the shipment isn’t coming until it’s two days late and someone calls the supplier who admits that, because of a missing raw material shipment, production line breakdown, or simply poor scheduling (which lets you know how important you are to them as a customer) it just isn’t coming.
Unlike RFX or e-Procurement, for which there are a plethora of good platforms that walk you through good workflows by the hand and make it hard for you to do it wrong (although they don’t prevent you from designing the process or event wrong), there are not as many platforms for SRM, and SRM cannot be fully automated. SRM is more than just performance monitoring and corrective action management, it’s also nurturing, development, and partnership. It’s a good process, with appropriate best-practices embedded within, that focusses on the soft factors as well as the hard factors.
But what the the best-practices that are appropriate for your organization? What’s the right process? How do you get started? And, more importantly, how badly are these needed? Unless you want to wait until a major disruption or disaster occurs, that could have been prevented with a better supplier relationship, the only way to find out is to measure up against your peers. Probably the best way to do this is to proactively participate in the 2015 State of Flux SRM Research Report and get the full results ahead of the market. Time is running out to complete the SRM Survey, which, in it’s seventh year, is focussed on helping you get executive sponsorship and support for your SRM initiative.
Follow the bright blue hyperlink today and take the 2015 SRM Survey today. Given the depth (and breadth) of work consistently produced by State of Flux (compared to the average over-priced and under-researched analyst report), the 45 minutes of time that is required makes the effort infinitely more valuable than the cost.