Jump to content

  • Quick Navigation
Photo

Establishing an Approved Supplier Program

Approved Supplier Program

  • You cannot start a new topic
  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 marie246

marie246

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 12 posts
  • 1 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 August 2015 - 08:26 PM

Hello,

 

I sent out supplier questionnaires to our existing suppliers since we have no formal documentation for any of them and we had no approved supplier program in place.  I started with a small contract food packaging company who did not have any quality systems in place.... challenging but manageable.

 

 All of materials we receive are supplied by our customers.  We only purchase shrink wrap, edge protectors, pallets, sheets of cardboard and blank labels.  Based on the material we purchase, we do not see our suppliers as a high risk suppliers, so we decided to just send out questionnaires as opposed to an audit. 

 

The responses I have received I have requested some basic information such as a copy of the pest control procedure or a list of approved pesticides, organizational chart and etc.  Not one company was willing to undergo an audit when responding to questionnaires. Since there was no quality system in place prior to me coming aboard 5 months ago, I have no records to support the suppliers performance other than the Production Supervisors and Warehouse Supervisors feedback.  All feedback has been positive just no documentation to support.

 

How do I rate my suppliers based on the information I do have? And do I go back to them insisting for the documentation we have requested? Very confusing on how to approach this or how to rate as this is my first time establishing as Approved Supplier Program.

 

I appreciate any feedback you can offer.

 

Thank you in advance!


  • 0

Thanked by 1 Member:

#2 MWidra

MWidra

    Grade - PIFSQN

  • IFSQN Principal
  • 771 posts
  • 285 thanks
120
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:On the Beautiful Eastern Shore of MD
  • Interests:My Dogs (Beagles),Gardening, SciFi, Video Games (WoW, D3, HoS, PvZ), Classical Music, Legal Stuff, Science Stuff. I'm a Geeky Nerd.

Posted 17 August 2015 - 09:04 PM

marie, you will find that at the start of your requests, your suppliers will not be quick to reply.  It will help if you tell them why you need this information, that it is so you can gain certification, which will make your services more reliable.  That certification will help the business grow, which will help them as well.

 

You will need to do some gentle reminding at times (or actual nagging) to get information.  When I have a customer who appears to ignore me, I Cc the purchasing agent for our company in the emails.  It has gotten me a lot of information, it is like magic.

 

Overall, people don't like to do paperwork, and they see it as a chore.  I made a questionnaire where they just fill in the blanks, mostly yes or no and provide documents where needed.  I try to make all my requests clear and concise, so they don't have to decode what I really want.  It has helped as well.

 

I always thank them profusely for helping me with my certification or legal requirements. 

 

You are going to have to train your suppliers to get used to this request every year.  It will take a little time.  If there have been no contamination events or recalls, then you can use that to indicate that your suppliers are probably giving you a quality product to start off with, though getting information is needed. 

 

Sometimes the suppliers have some of this information on their web sites and assume you can just download it.  I would check it out, and ask them to fill in the rest.  They will appreciate that you value their time.

 

I'm sure that others have some tricks and ideas.

 

Martha


  • 0

"...everything can be taken from a man but one thing:  the last of the human freedoms--to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way."  Viktor E. Frankl

 

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending."  The Muppets


Thanked by 1 Member:

#3 marie246

marie246

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 12 posts
  • 1 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 August 2015 - 09:41 PM

 Thank you Martha....

 

I did make the questionnaire yes and no questions and sent them a Supplier Assessment Letter stating what we are trying to accomplish and expressed how much I value our partnership.  I did expect some resistance and I am sure it's for the reasons you stated, nobody wants to do anymore than they need to so asking for copies of this information is obvious a chore especially if they do not have the information to begin with even more so. 

 

I just want to make sure we have some documentation for our auditor to show we are being proactive in meeting this requirement as well as and number one to assure our vendors have quality standards and guidelines in place.

 

Thank so much for the feedback! = )


  • 0

#4 MWidra

MWidra

    Grade - PIFSQN

  • IFSQN Principal
  • 771 posts
  • 285 thanks
120
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:On the Beautiful Eastern Shore of MD
  • Interests:My Dogs (Beagles),Gardening, SciFi, Video Games (WoW, D3, HoS, PvZ), Classical Music, Legal Stuff, Science Stuff. I'm a Geeky Nerd.

Posted 18 August 2015 - 12:38 PM

marie, getting information out of suppliers is like is like getting a straight answer out of a politician.  If you are persistent, you will get something.  It may not be all that you want, but you will get some kind of answer.

 

Good luck!

 

Martha


  • 0

"...everything can be taken from a man but one thing:  the last of the human freedoms--to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way."  Viktor E. Frankl

 

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending."  The Muppets


#5 clbernard

clbernard

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Associate
  • 20 posts
  • 5 thanks
4
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 18 August 2015 - 04:11 PM

I also let my suppliers know that what I am asking for is what is considered standard among food processors so that by getting this information ready and made available they will broaden their customer base.  I would be suspicious of any company that does not reply to this sort of request.  I would also schedule an onsite walk thru if they do not have the basic information that you need.  You do not need to import a pest problem with their supplies.  I have found that a face to face visit is most helpful when dealing with newbies to this world of audits and required documentation.  The onsite allows you to visually confirm that existing programs, even those that are informal are working to control your concerns.  

 

As to the ranking, I would make the first 6-12 months of the supplier program a probationary period regardless of how long the suppliers have been servicing your account.  I would include wording in the program that explains that no ranking occurs upon receipt of the information except for approval for probationary status.  Then put together your criteria for rating, such as on-time performance, cost, complaint response, etc. and be ready to go.  

 

One word of caution, do not put too much value in feedback from plant sources as to the suppliers performance, in my experience that information is often flawed.  

 

Good luch


  • 3

Thanked by 2 Members:

#6 weloveplastic

weloveplastic

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Associate
  • 17 posts
  • 2 thanks
2
Neutral

  • South Africa
    South Africa

Posted 21 August 2015 - 06:29 AM

I deal with questionnaires from customers almost on a daily basis. Some of the questionnaire take me a whole day to complete. Some times I feel as if I need a science degree it gets so technical. I see this as a partnership and I am learning. Our customers require the documents for certification and this is on-going. I have a good idea of what our customers need and have these documents ready and updated each year. This in turn has improved our business and our confidence.


  • 0





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Approved Supplier Program

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users