It is a well-known fact that suppliers are the key to every business. Without them, you might have a tough time scaling your operations. Suppliers provide goods or a service to help you conduct business. When talking about suppliers the most obvious are those that supply you with your stock for you to on sell to your customers.
Finding the right supplier does come with its challenges. Generally, you would like a supplier to have knowledge of your industry, provide products and services consistently and align with your core values, for example, an organic wool supplier for an eco-friendly furniture store. Once you have found your suppliers you want to be able to scale your business while also maintaining relationships with them, so how do you navigate that? Here is a quick guide to using Acumen’s POS system to help you maintain your supplier-business relationship.
Negotiate terms and have a clear outline as to what is expected
While having a great relationship with your supplier is key, one of the most important steps to a supplier-business relationship is to set expectations and negotiate terms. One of the smartest ways to complete this task is by having a service level agreement (SLA). An SLA is an obligation usually built into the contract which outlines what needs to be provided each month and the standard in which it is to be delivered each month.
Within this agreement it is important to address:
- What service is being provided
- How the service will be conducted
- Responsibilities of both supplier and your business
- Compliance to industry regulations and legal requirements
- Reporting and Communication
- Payment terms and how to be paid including EFT, BPAY, and online payment solutions
- How to address disputes and complaints
- Termination conditions
A well structured SLA makes it easier to run your business because you know what to expect from your suppliers and when to expect it. There is no confusion or vagueness, so you can go about running your business without feeling like you are waiting on something.
Automate your payments
Once you have agreed to the terms and conditions with your suppliers, you can now look at streamlining the process of paying your suppliers. Automating your payments allows you to pay your suppliers on time without worrying about invoice dates or payment amounts. You can start a new payment run in Acumen through the use of Suggested Payments. When executing a payment run you can select which suppliers by their terms, type or by supplier code. You can also enter in an ID or have one generated for you for the payment so that you can easily review all the payments that are generated. The payment run will check through your supplier invoices and find which ones are due to be paid and generate the payment document for them. You can then review which payments have been generated.
Just as important as maintaining those supplier relationships is to stay on top of what you are paying for and when you are paying for it. A good practice is to review your payments at the start of each month and ensure that deliverables have been delivered. Reviewing your payments is simple with an Acumen POS system, you can view the list of generated payments on screen or use a report to see all payments created for the month. This will provide you with all the information about your supplier payments which will make it easier for you to make decisions about how to spend your resources.
Still Need Help? Contact Support
Our support team is more than just a call centre – we want to make sure your business is running as smoothly as possible using Acumen POS. Our team is based in Geelong and our members are skilled software users so we can provide personalised support for a range of challenges. If you are having trouble paying your suppliers or need to set up an alternative payment method to accommodate your SLA, get in touch with our team.