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How to Conduct a Vendor Assessment - Ethel Kay Merioles - Blog

How to Conduct a Vendor Assessment

In any industry, businesses rely on vendors and suppliers to provide quality products and services necessary for successful operations and profitability. And the successful companies treat their vendors and suppliers—the ones that play crucial roles in the supply chain—as partners that help the business become a successful venture.

However, ensuring that the vendor will be able to perform well not only begins during the operations stage. A proper vendor assessment must be conducted before choosing the vendor that businesses will be able to rely on for a period of time. The mutually beneficial partnership is also influenced by the negotiated price and agreed upon quality of service.

Vendor Evaluation

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Before selecting a vendor, remember this series of steps to help you determine the right vendor with whom you can have a successful and long-lasting relationship.

1.       Determine your needs.

Identify your needs and which vendors are capable of meeting those needs. Make sure you’re your goals as an organization can be achieved by your vendor. These goals that you set must be measurable, relevant, and time sensitive.

2.       Determine the deal-breakers.

Narrow the field by making a list of very specific and necessary features you want in a vendor. If you are specific about needing a cloud storage solution instead of storing data in a traditional in-office server, then selecting a vendor will be much easier for you.

3.       Collect information about the vendors.

Online research can be done to gather information about the vendors, including their products and services. If online data are insufficient, vendors can be sought out to provide organizational profile, estimated cost of ownership, capability/capacity, and availability for demonstrations. Do keep in mind the following:

  • Security protocols and practices of these vendors who will eventually have access to your business’ sensitive information.
  • Enforcement and regulation of security standards within the organization. Vendors must be aware of the presence of malicious hackers and data grabbers.

4.       Request for references.

Ask vendors for lists of clients who have worked with these vendors. Vendor comparison must not only include pricing and costs but must also extend to service quality and consistency, security and processes. In risk assessments, familiarity with the vendor’s reputation is important, and it must be done at the beginning of every engagement with a vendor.

Making the Final Decision

Selecting a vendor that best fits your complex requirements can take a long time. Once you have made a thorough vendor assessment and compared several vendors, you will then enter the contracting phase, which will also require some time and effort. Speeding up the entire vendor selection process may require the assistance of the most experienced consultants or BPO support providers to get the job done.

When it comes to vendor selection and management, remember to trust only the most well-established company in the area. In the Philippines, for instance, you can contact the country’s premier end-to-end support solutions provider TeleDevelopment Services, Inc.

Publish Date: February 10, 2015 2:20 AM

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