Every business has to start somewhere, and creating a more diverse supplier base is an excellent place to start. For some companies, that means relying on a few suppliers for their products and services. But what if you want to diversify your supplier base?
It will take careful planning and a solid business strategy. That is why we’ve compiled five ways that will help you create a more diverse supplier base and find new vendors for your company in the process:
Find Diverse Suppliers that are Dedicated to Sustainability: As your company grows, you may want to make a commitment towards sustainability. One way for you to do so is by finding suppliers who also support sustainable practices and materials in their work as well! This will not only help with the environment but it will also be beneficial when producing your products.
Find Suppliers that are Dedicated to Quality: As your company grows, you may want to make a commitment towards quality. To do so, find suppliers who also support the production of high-quality products and services for their clients and customers!
Find Suppliers with Different Services: If you don’t have many suppliers currently on board, identify diverse suppliers with many different service offerings.
Find Suppliers with Different Locations: Get suppliers who work in different locations. This will help you distribute your products to a variety of clients and customers around the world!
Look for Supplier Diversity Collaborates: If you are looking for new suppliers, take a look at supplier diversity collaboratives. These organizations can be great ways to find like-minded businesses that may also want to increase their own diversification efforts.
Increased diversity within your supplier base through working with more women-owned, minority-owned, veteran-owned, and other diverse businesses can bolster your company’s innovation and improve its procurement quality.
Although the benefits are clear, it isn’t always apparent, especially to businesses lacking diversity in their current supplier base, how they can start sourcing from more diverse suppliers.
Building a more diverse supplier base for your organization does not need to be overly complicated. Companies across many different industries and of all sizes can begin by maximizing supplier diversity in the following ways:
Make use of an online supply and procurement platform that includes many diverse suppliers. Instead of sourcing suppliers on your own and manually tracking expenditures with multiple vendors, companies can utilize e-commerce platforms to centralize procurement by purchasing products and services from multiple suppliers directly from the platform and automatically tracking expenditures.
Develop business relationships with supplier diversity organizations like the National Minority Supplier Diversity Council, the National Veteran-Owned Business Association, and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. These organizations specialize in supplier diversity and can help recommend new vendors that will broaden and enhance your organization’s supply chain.
Publicizing your supplier diversity efforts is another way to expand your network of diverse suppliers. Thus, diverse vendors or diversity-related organizations can learn about your work and potentially approach you about partnering with your organization.
By publicizing your supplier diversity program once it gets off the ground, you can improve your brand reputation among stakeholders and attract more diverse talent and partners. Businesses with successful supplier diversity programs make use of social media to raise awareness of their supplier diversity initiatives among their customers and prospects.
And lastly, make sure that when working on your company’s supply chain strategy, think about how it might impact minorities or other historically marginalized groups. Inclusive business practices not only support increased representation but they also promote fairness in doing business as well! Keep these tips in mind when planning out your next steps towards building your organization’s supplier diversity program.