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Building Positive Supplier Relationships in Auto Repair

The relationship between a business and its suppliers can have a significant impact on the success of both companies. A repair shop wants a reliable supply of parts at the best price possible. A supplier wants a consistent steady supply of business. Employing too many suppliers or changing suppliers too often can have a negative effect on an auto repair shop. Establishing positive relationships with suppliers contributes a great deal to success. The most successful shops build positive relationships with suppliers and the connection between them becomes very much a partnership. Just as a shop will go above and beyond for their best customers a supplier will go above and beyond for their best shops. The willingness of a supplier to go above and beyond can very well determine the ability of the shop to provide quality service. The measure of the relationship is not only based on business volume but is considerably influenced by personal interaction. Acknowledgement, appreciation, courtesy and respect are the building blocks of positive relationships.

Service Relationships

On the business side of the shop/supplier relationship there are critical factors upon which the foundation is built. The supplier’s role is to provide quality parts and service at competitive prices and in a timely fashion. The business should give the supplier enough advance notice when parts are needed, order the correct parts to avoid high return rates and pay invoices in a timely manner. All things considered these factors support an efficient business process between shop and supplier.

The Positive Perspective

Assuming all is well at the business transaction level personal interaction can be the factor that takes a relationship to the next level. This may not apply in all situations as there may be little or no business conducted directly between people. But in the instances that include interpersonal relationships a supplier will evaluate a business relationship based on this criteria. A person that feels positive about a relationship will contribute more to that relationship.

The Value of Support

The quality of support provided by suppliers can impact business considerably. Positive relationships result in quality support and the value of service is enhanced. Focusing on the business/supplier relationship at the business transaction level and the interpersonal level builds positive relationships that contribute to the success of both companies.

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