Buyer Supplier Relationship Management: Top 10 Challenges


Delivering a high quality product and having a reliable customer base is crucial to gain a competitive edge in business. Any kind of errors in the system may result in undesirable results. The source of error could be be anything but to understand and rectify the same is very important. Buyer Supplier Relationship Management (SRM) is the most neglected term in today’s business. Suppliers play a crucial role in any company’s success and a healthy relationship with the  suppliers can help the organization in the long run.

Supplier’s Track Record

The first step to take before engaging with any supplier is to go through his past and current projects and to investigate his knowledge about tax and legal implication of exporting and importing. Knowing the supplier beforehand helps to create and build a healthy relationship.

Understanding The Culture

Belonging to a different culture may give rise to different views and interpretations while having the same conversation. As a business owner, one should familiarize himself with the supplier culture and make sure that the supplier is clear about the needs and requirements in terms of quality and other deliverable.

Lack of Communication

Communication is absolutely necessary in many aspects of business. If a supplier doesn’t understand the company’s strategic goals, he won’t be able to fulfil the needs and this may lead to poor results. Maintaining a good contact with the suppliers can benefit the organization in a big way.

Non-Transparency of Processes

Many a times, it has been observed that non-transparency of the supplier’s process

creates gaps in the company-supplier relationship. Technology can play a crucial role to fill this gap. Both parties can use an online purchase order and invoice management tool like Invoicera to know and analyze the whole process more effectively.

B2b Communication
Stressed Supplier

Suppliers deal with many organizations at once. Often the order is delivered late by the supplier because of unavailability of the product. These type of late deliveries can weaken the relationship. Forecasting the requirements of the company can help in running the SRM process smoothly.

Damaged Delivery

At times, the delivered product turns out to be damaged or flawed. Aggressive steps at such times can ruin a relationship. One should notify the supplier respectfully and ask him to replace it. A healthy balance should be maintained while taking steps against suppliers who are under-performing. They should be motivated and asked to improve quality and delivery in appropriate manner.

Training Suppliers

If the supplier doesn’t understand, what the company wants its customers to experience through their products, he won’t be able to provide enough supplies. One should make sure that the supplier knows the company’s motto. They should be given appropriate trainings to ensure they understand the expectation levels.

The Need To Nurture

A healthy relation only nurtures when the two sides stay together for long. Abandoning the suppliers at the time of success may create stress in a relationship. To avert this, one should include the supplier at every milestone and success celebration of company.


In time without recognition and encouragement, the supplier becomes disloyal to an organization. Changing the supplier is not the solution here as it will consume more time and money. One can gain the loyalty of a supplier by encouraging him, or perhaps, offering incentives if possible.

Contract Conflicts

Signing a biased contract can be very unpleasant for the supplier. One should make sure that the contract has benefits for the both the sides. A contract must be reviewed very carefully before it gets finalized.

Many organizations are now realizing the importance of Supplier Relationship Management. Efforts have to made on a continuous basis to build harmonious relationships . SRM is a long term approach to sustained success.

As a business it is very important to  opt for the appropriate collaboration software for management of B2B communication cycle. Invoicera is one such tool that provides a host of features and benefits for supplier-buyer relationship management:

1. Send and Schedule Invoices to the buyers on time

2. Buyers can send purchase orders in a timely manager

3. Suppliers can send in estimates for buyer approval

4. In case of a price settlement, the buyer can send in appropriate credit notes

5. The buyer can get a free log-in to access all invoices and account statements online.

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