对话拥有四十年采购经验的美国buyer


前言

最近在研究客户转化率,感觉始终差一口气,没有找到突破口。我也想从客户那里获取一些信息,辅助我的判断,但是一般客户都不愿意透露一些真实情况,所以我只能从其它渠道入手。

比如我在全球范围内找曾经有采购经验的人士,从他们那里听听关于如何选择供应商以及其中一些不为人知的故事,这样对于我分析客户画像、理解客户需求有些许帮助。知己知彼,百战不殆。

在这之前我接触过几个采购,但是他们的回答以及一些见解大多老生常谈,并没有给我太多的启发。而这次接触的buyer具有四十多年的采购经验,是比较大型公司的采购出身,他在回答一些问题的时候条理清晰、逻辑缜密。

所以,我想写下这篇博客,进行一些梳理和归纳。

第一次对话(2023年12月3日)

Rolen你在选择供应商的时候看重什么呢?

What I look for is total overall cost and by that I mean not just the price but also the shipping the quality component if there’s a quality and then I also look at payment terms.

Because right now companies want to hang on payment terms so my company we try to push for 90day payment terms which means we don’t have to pay them for 90 days after taking receipt of their material and that gives it it helps your cash flow situation out right.

So I look so I so when I’ve been looking a lot lately and I’ve been getting our buyers to look at is okay we’ve got these three suppliers all three of them prices are very close this one may be have the highest slightly higher prices but it’s located right here in Maine we don’t pay any shipping costs this one might be in Ohio this one might be in California shipping cost like four five $3,000 so when you add in the freight this one here is actually even though on paper it looks like it’s higher it’s actually cheaper and it may have a better reputation you know as far as quality goes because you may have some you know you get some background information on these suppliers find out what they’re all about but a big thing that we’re looking now is at you know pay terms too you know you want to have companies that are flexible on their payment terms U and if they’re a brand new supplier let’s say you’ve never ordered from them before brand new I think you also have to look at their financial capabilities are they financially doing well or is there a possibility that they could go bankrupt or close their doors because they’re not financially sound and when people when when suppliers aren’t financially sound they cut corners on quality and they cut corner on costs and that affects your product too so those are the kind of things I look at in addition to communication because communication as you know very vital if your supplier says I will have it on your dock October 1st and they consistently do that thumbs up but if they’re always late U and you’re missing dates for your customers then they’re not going to be a very good supplier.

Chat GPT翻译:
我关注的是总体成本,这不仅包括产品价格,还考虑了运费、质量组件(如果有的话),以及支付条件。

目前,很多公司都倾向于延长支付周期,因此我们公司试图推动采用90天的支付条件,这意味着我们在收到他们的材料后有90天的时间来付款,有助于改善我们的现金流状况。

因此,我一直在着重考虑的是,最近我们的采购人员开始看的是这样的情况:我们有三个供应商,他们的价格非常接近,其中一个价格可能稍高一些,但它位于缅因州,我们无需支付任何运费。另一个可能在俄亥俄州,还有一个可能在加利福尼亚,运费可能是四五千美元。

当考虑运费时,尽管从纸面上看这个价格更高,但实际上它更便宜,而且它可能声誉更好,尤其在质量方面,因为你可以获取一些有关这些供应商的背景信息。目前我们非常注重的另一个方面是支付条件,我们希望与那些在支付条件上更为灵活的公司合作。

如果是一家全新的供应商,也就是说你以前从未与他们订购过产品,我认为你还需要关注他们的财务能力,他们目前的经济状况如何,或者有可能破产或倒闭吗,因为当供应商的财务状况不佳时,他们会在质量和成本上偷工减料,这也会影响到你的产品。这些是我在选择供应商时关注的事项。

除此之外,沟通也是非常关键的,因为正如你所知,如果你的供应商说他们会在10月1日前将货物交到你的码头,并且他们能够始终如一地做到,那就是好的。但如果他们总是迟交货,你错过了客户的交货日期,那么他们就不会是一个很好的供应商。

美国外教

Rolen总结:

总体成本,产品质量,财务情况,付款条件,沟通、准时交货


Rolen你谈到你会看整体成本,那么是如何去计算这些成本呢,因为产品价格以及运费这种有形的成本很好计算,但是涉及到一些无形的成本,比如沟通、精力、时间等等,你们是如何去衡量的呢?

One of the things right now that xxx is really big on is something called sustainability sustainability is something right now that I don’t know if you guys you’re you’re going to hear about it at some point especially if you’re working in Europe sustainability is very big right now because if you can cut if you can reduce your freight costs you know that Greenhouse emission gas emission from Vehicles if you’re shipping it from across the other side of your country that’s a big win for our company.

As far as they look at if you can keep lower um inventory on hand you know frees up more space for other items in your Warehouse too so you’re not like overloaded on certain because you have that long lead time or long shipping thing on there.

But sustainability is very big, you know we also give preference to companies that are powered by something other than electrical or gas right now I have two huge suppliers and both of them are solar powered and solar power solar powered 100% their their plants are 100% solar powered.

So my company gives preference to suppliers that are you know energy efficient and also are sustain you know show that they have sustainability practices in place you know for and and maybe that’s not as big a thing in China but in the United States if you want to get a government contract you have to look at they have to show some sustainability and you also have to have something called diversity which means you have to have some uh suppliers that fall under this category they can be women suppliers or minority owned suppliers or whatever there’s a certain Target number we have to hit every year.

In the United States uh especially if we want to do government contracts you probably don’t have to deal with that there though do you it’s more complicated in in USA I think it is more complicated when you’re dealing with the United States government that is very United States government had they set out certain rules about percentages of what you you have to have for like this and that and that and before you bid on it you have to have all these things in place.


Chat GPT翻译:

目前 xxx 公司非常关注的一个方面是可持续性,这是一项目前在欧洲等地尤为重要的概念。可持续性是一个你们可能会在某个时候听说的东西,尤其是如果你们在欧洲工作的话。可持续性目前非常受重视,因为如果你能减少货运成本,尤其是从国家的另一端运输,可以减少运输过程中产生的温室气体排放,对我们公司来说是一个重要的胜利。

此外,如果你能保持较低的库存水平,也就是手头上不用保存太多库存,这也会为仓库中的其他物品腾出更多的空间,这样你就不会因为有长时间的交货周期或长途运输而在某些物品上过度负载。

可持续性是非常重要的,我们也更倾向于那些不仅仅依赖电力或天然气的公司。我现在有两个大供应商,它们都采用太阳能供电,百分之百使用太阳能,它们的工厂完全由太阳能供电。

因此,我们公司更青睐那些能源效率高且具有可持续性实践的供应商。在美国,如果你想获得政府合同,你必须展示一些可持续性,还必须具备一种被称为”多样性”的要素,这意味着你必须拥有一些符合这一类别的供应商,可能是女性供应商或少数族裔拥有的供应商等等。

在美国,我们每年都有一定的目标要达到,特别是如果我们想要与政府签约的话。你们可能在那里不需要处理这些问题,对吧?

我认为在美国处理这些问题更加复杂,尤其是当你与美国政府打交道时,因为他们对百分比等方面设定了一些规则,你在投标之前必须要有所有这些事情的准备。

美国外教

Rolen:对你来说,哪些供应商算得上是一个好的供应商呢?

I have one supplier right now that we’ve started work we worked with them for many years and now I’m expanding on what we’ve been working on I’m adding a new product line with them cartons I used to just see printed material now they’re doing cartons too printed cartons what makes a good Spire partnership partnership they understand our needs they know we need you know we look we constantly look for short lead time orders for emergencies they know the quality has to be here um what I look for is a supplier that has a A can do ratio like nearly 100% they say they can do it and they do it you know they deliver one they say they’re going to they deliver a high quality product they’re you know literally they’re like Partners to us and I look at this Franklin printing that we have up in main here they’re literally like a a partner to us and every I’m I I talk to them almost like I do to our employees

because we have you know like my buyers or whatever because I know um and they know that their future viability as a company because they do such a large amount of business with xxx it depends on us and we depend on them for like our key products as well because we couldn’t find them as cheap anywhere else and the quality and on time delivery is first P

so I guess what I would what it really boils down to is just um partnership great communication honest they have to be honest in good integrity and I like a supplier that there is a mistake made they stand behind it they don’t hide and run for cover they don’t blame you know the you know somebody else it’s your fault or whatever they’ll take ownership for the mistake and then they take care of it and that’s the way xx operates and that’s what I would call my ideal supplier.

Chat GPT翻译:

目前我们有一家供应商,我们与他们合作已经很多年了,现在我正在扩展我们的合作,增加一个新的产品线——纸盒。之前我们主要是与他们合作印刷材料,现在他们还开始制作印刷纸盒。对于一个优秀的供应商合作伙伴,我认为以下几点是关键的:

了解我们的需求:

  • 他们理解我们需要短交货周期订单以应对紧急情况。
  • 他们知道产品质量对我们至关重要。

履行承诺:

  • 我寻找的是供应商的“能做到比”接近100%。他们说能做到的事情,几乎都能做到。
  • 提供高质量的产品,按照承诺的时间交货。

建立伙伴关系:

  • 他们不仅仅是供应商,而是我们的合作伙伴。
  • 他们被视为我们的合作伙伴,我们之间的沟通非常紧密。

沟通:

  • 优秀的沟通是关键,我与他们的交流方式几乎与与公司员工的交流一样频繁。
  • 我知道,他们的未来生存与公司的业务数量有关,因为他们与我们的业务很多,我们也依赖他们,尤其是对于一些关键产品,因为我们在其他地方找不到更便宜的,并且他们的质量和准时交货是首要的。

诚实和正直:

  • 我喜欢一个供应商,如果发生了错误,他们会站在错误的一方,而不是回避责任,也不会推卸责任。
  • 他们会承认错误,然后采取措施进行纠正。

总的来说,我理想中的供应商是一个与我们建立了紧密伙伴关系、沟通良好、诚实正直、在承诺方面表现出色并且愿意对错误负责的供应商。 xxx 就是我理想中的供应商,他们的运作方式符合这些标准。

美国外教

Rolen:我们是一家小公司,所以当我们联系客户的很难跟他们建立起信任关系,你有什么建议给我吗?

if I was dealing with a small supplier like right now what I would do is I’d start small I mean I and I do I have a small supplier here in Maine I’m gonna start out with I’m not going to throw them 20% of the business or even 10% of the business we’re going to start off with a couple orders we’re going to see how they do and once they meet those orders and they prove to me they can get there on time uh and the quality is good then I’m gonna increase the orders but you know like you said the total cost has got is very important right but the cost the total cost of an item that’s going to get your foot in the door so to speak that’s going to get the attention of your European customers it’s going to be your price that’s how you’re going to start but what’s going to maintain that relationship is going to be getting it there on time having good quality and good Communications and once you establish that over time over time you’re G to be able to get contct you’ll get bigger contracts but I’m going to the same thing right now with the small main supplier here I’m on the phone with them and I was I was on a phone with them Friday you know I’m just assuring them you know hey we’re still working to get you set up and I need your prices and I and they know to get your foot in the door you have to show me you know good pricing and once that’s established everything will kind of fall into place after that you know.

absolutely on time delivery is very is very key you know and having some face and good communication and could involve teams call you know on a regular BAS basis it you know it could could involve somebody traveling there and meeting them firsthand or going to a trade show maybe and seeing them or something like that but you really wanna the face-to-face interaction is important too I mean if you’re just getting emails from somebody I don’t know I don’t I don’t like dealing just in emails alone I like to see somebody’s face and look in their you know you know what I mean teams calls do you have yeah so I think that’s important to have that interaction as well

Chat GPT翻译:

如果我正在与一个小型供应商打交道,那么我会从小开始。我有一个缅因州的小供应商,我会从一些小订单开始,而不是一下子给予他们20%甚至10%的业务份额。我们将开始一些小订单,看看他们的表现。一旦他们完成了这些订单并证明他们能够准时交货,质量也好,那么我会增加订单量。

就像你所说的,总成本非常重要,但成本是让你迈出第一步的关键,这样说来,它能够引起你欧洲客户的注意,就是你的价格。但能够维持这种关系的将是准时交货、高质量和良好的沟通。

一旦你在一段时间内建立了这些,你将能够获得更大的合同。我现在正与缅因州的一个小供应商做同样的事情。我和他们通了电话,上周五我还在和他们通电话,我向他们保证,我们仍在努力使他们能够参与进来,我需要他们的价格。

他们知道为了打开局面,他们必须给我一个良好的价格,一旦这个建立起来,其他一切就会顺理成章。

准时交货非常关键,还有面对面的交流。这可能包括定期的团队电话,甚至可能涉及某人前往他们的地方亲自会面,或者参加贸易展览之类的活动。但你真的想要面对面的互动也是很重要的。如果你只是通过电子邮件交流,我不喜欢仅仅通过电子邮件来处理事务,我想亲自看到某人的面孔,与他们进行交流。

美国外教

Rolen:你在跟中国供应商沟通的时候有什么gap,比如文化上的

the only issue that we had in the past really to speak of is the Chinese New Year because they say they take such a long period of time off you know to celebrate the holiday that you have to really build up inventory well before the Chinese um New Year starts and then when they come back from Chinese New Year and this is just my impression and and I think what it was communicated to me a lot of times the people that work in the manufacturing facility in China a lot of them decide not to come back they want to stay in their Province or wherever so sometimes there’s a gap after the Chinese New Year to start ordering get things back up again because of they do tend to lose employees during the Chinese holiday because some of them decide not to come back and and where that comes into play is if you have like a certain production line where there’s only one or two people trained on it and you’re missing one or two of those people because after they they said not come back to work um you know it it can set you back and it happened to me personally so I know it can happen when I when we work from e but um those are really those are the big things right there.

Chat GPT翻译:

一个我们过去真正存在的问题就是中国的春节,因为他们会休息很长时间来庆祝这个节日,你必须在中国新年开始前很长时间就开始建立库存。然后,当他们从中国新年休息回来时,这只是我的印象,也是很多次被告知的,中国制造厂的工人中有很多人决定不回来工作,他们想要留在自己的省份或其他地方。

因此,有时在中国新年后重新开始订购和重新启动业务时可能会存在一些间隔,因为他们在春节期间确实会失去一些员工,因为其中一些人决定不回来工作。这会涉及到的问题是,如果你有一个生产线,只有一两个人受过培训,而你失去了其中一两个人,因为他们决定不回来工作,你可能会陷入困境。

这对我个人来说确实发生过,所以我知道这种情况确实可能发生,当我们与中国合作时,这确实是一个大问题。

美国外教

第二次对话(2023年12月10日)

Ben:

Let’s imagine a scenario:

1. You are looking for an overseas supplier (let’s say China), and you have all the worries, concerns, and questions mentioned above (e.g. quality, reliability, communication and etc).

2. You happen to find a potential supplier on Google and you browse their website.

3. And most of your worries, concerns, and questions can be well answered on that website while you are browsing.

My question is:

1. Would you be inclined to initiate contact or make an inquiry with this supplier solely because their website has alleviated your initial worries?

2. Furthermore, in your view, how impactful is it for a supplier’s website to proactively resolve potential buyers’ doubts? Does this level of transparency influence your trust and willingness to engage in business?

I look at a website and buy something off the website if it’s something expensive, and if it’s something that’s going to be long-term, I’m going to be buying something that requires freight.

You know, extensive freight costs I may want to visit the supplier see their factory, and see the product. You know, it just depends on the dollar amount I mean you’re not buying paper clips, right if you’re if you’re buying paper clips that’s one thing or pencils or something that’s one thing but if you’re buying expensive pieces of equipment or if you’re buying raw material that’s going to stock your factory you know and it’s critical to your production, then I’m going to make the visit and I don’t care about the website necessarily, but don’t get me wrong website’s a good start point you know you can get a lot of your preliminary things answered, but in terms of it comes down to risk really how much risk are you willing to Bear by just looking at a website and I think if it’s something really critical for your company you’re going to you’re going to need to go beyond that do a supplier visit meet them face to face and you know that kind of thing so you think it depends on the products you are looking for such as the longterm and high high price products so you may be visit there factories to see how quality they are and if it’s a custom item too. paper clips a paperclip a pencil is a pencil but if it’s a custom-made part that’s specific for your company and has your brand or logo on it, you can buy things offline and they can put your logo on it, or you can send them artwork or whatever but if it’s something that’s really mission-critical, something that’s expensive Custom Critical for Production: You know, and you have something you have to ship and spend a lot of money on.

I think you’re taking a big risk by buying something just based on what somebody has on a website. I think it depends on the dollar amount and the impact to your company. How important is you know there’s a lot of variables you got to look at, I think, but you know, I think there’s a dollar amount you got to figure out.

I mean I would if it was interesting enough I would make the contact if I saw something interesting on a website and it would be something I would initiate the contact and then I would get more information get samples maybe samples um find out more information about costs you know what’s your lead time maybe I’d even do a financial report behind the scenes and find out they are they financially be a financial VI you know viable company are they good Financial I mean if you’re going to jump into bed with suppli and make a big commitment then you got to make some extra steps right but um but I mean I think that a good website gets you in the door gets your foot in the door at least and you interested you’re G to look at them and from there I think you kind of build into the next level in terms of you know doing business with them so the website is the first impression.

Chat GPT 翻译:

我通常会先查看网站,如果是一些昂贵或者需要长期使用的产品,尤其是涉及到大宗货运成本的情况下,我可能会考虑亲自访问供应商,参观他们的工厂,了解产品情况。这并不是说网站没有用,它是一个很好的起点,可以解决许多初步问题。但是当涉及到高风险的决策时,比如购买昂贵设备或者对生产至关重要的原材料时,我更愿意亲自去现场考察。

我认为这取决于购买的产品,尤其是长期使用和高价值的产品。你可能会亲自访问供应商的工厂,检查产品质量,特别是定制项目。纸夹是纸夹,铅笔是铅笔,但如果是为你的公司定制的特殊零部件,带有你的品牌或标志,那就另当别论。你可以在线购买并让他们加上你的标志,或者发送他们设计的艺术品等。

但如果是对公司非常关键、昂贵、生产至关重要的定制项目,你仅仅通过网站购买可能是冒很大风险。我认为这取决于货款金额、对公司的影响以及项目的重要性,有许多变数需要考虑。不同的情况可能需要不同的决策。

如果我在网站上看到了有趣的东西,我会主动联系他们,获取更多信息,可能会要一些样品,了解更多关于成本的信息,了解交货周期,甚至可能会进行一些幕后的财务调查,确认他们是否是一个财务上可行的公司,他们的财务状况如何。如果你要与供应商建立紧密的合作关系并做出重大承诺,那么你必须采取一些额外的步骤。但是,我认为一个好的网站可以让你进入门槛,至少引起你的兴趣,使你有兴趣了解更多。从那里开始,你可以逐渐发展到下一个层次,进行更深入的业务合作。所以,网站就是第一印象的体现。

美国外教

Rolen: 那么,假如你浏览了一家供应商,他们的网站做得不怎么好(比如UI),也没有回答你的问题,但是他们的实际产品其实很棒,你是如何看待这件事的呢?

In general, I mean, I’ve gone through websites and made inquiries before here in the United States it’s different because they can speak English and they understand me maybe it’s different if I go I mean I’m assuming if a website is in China they’re going to have people that monitor that that can speak English and will respond in a timely manner manner as well I mean why would you put up a website and then have no followup on it or have people in the customer service that aren’t following up on C potential customers inquiries I mean it doesn’t make a lot of sense and reality is if somebody doesn’t get back to you and you have they have a website and you ask them questions it’s probably going to be an elimination you’re not going to go back to them you’re not going to say God they didn’t answer my questions what kind of a supply you know what I mean they’re not interested in my business you know what kind of a supplier are they going to be if don’t answer questions so I think it’s going to be a big turnoff so I think it’s important if you ask a question on the website they answer it and they give you you know good concise answers I mean my experience with working I mean buying things on websites in the United States have been mostly indirect indirect items you know anything when anytime I purchase like raw material for the plant usually it’s from some interaction or meeting somebody at some some venue and then saying hey you ought to try us out and then getting a plant visit and and whatever I usually don’t do that but you’re dealing in resale items which is a little bit different I think with resale items you do have to have a good website and you do have to have you know your products visible so people can see them and take a look at them but for me I buy raw materials for production plan like packaging so I really don’t need to go to a website to see those like you it’s a whole different field.

I have my own online business I sell things online um I would say people contact me for questions I try to answer them like right away you know give them quick give them a quick response give them the information that they’re looking for the SI if they’re looking for sizes or whatever um sometimes people though will reach out and ask you something that’s impossible you know they want to know if you can ship this by having it by you know someplace by tomorrows International or they’ll want to know if you can get some you know they’ll ask you something that you just know is not doable right you can’t so you you can’t just mislead people either I mean if there’s something there that you can’t do you know impossible shipping or if they want to reduce the price to the point where you’re not making a money you’re not making any profit right you know you just hey I’m sorry you know I can’t do that that’s you know then you just have to say no.

Chat GPT翻译:

通常情况下,我曾经在美国通过网站进行过询价。在美国,情况不同,因为他们能说英语,能理解我。

假设如果一个网站在中国,他们会有能够讲英语并及时回应的人员。我觉得如果一个公司建立了网站,却没有跟进或者客服人员不回应潜在客户的咨询,这是没有道理的。实际上,如果有人不回复你,并且他们有网站,你可能会淘汰掉他们。你不会说:“天啊,他们没回答我的问题,这是什么样的供应商?”他们不回答问题,可能会让你对他们产生不好的印象,因此我认为这很重要。如果在网站上提出问题,他们应该回答,并且给出明确的答案。

我在美国通过网站购买物品的经验主要是一些间接的商品。每当我为工厂购买原材料时,通常是通过一些互动或在某个场合认识某人,然后他们说:“嘿,你应该试试我们的产品。”接着进行工厂参观等。但如果你经营的是再销售商品,情况可能会有所不同。我认为对于再销售商品,你需要一个好的网站,确保你的产品可见,以便人们能够查看和了解。而对于我购买生产计划所需的原材料,比如包装材料,我实际上并不需要去网站上查看,因为这属于完全不同的领域。

我拥有自己的在线业务,在网上销售商品。我会说人们会联系我提问,我会尽量立即回复,给他们一个快速的、满足他们需求的回应。比如,如果他们问尺寸或其他信息。然而,有时候人们会联系你询问一些不可能实现的事情,他们想知道是否可以通过国际快递在明天把商品送到某个地方,或者他们想知道是否可以得到一些,总之,他们会问一些你知道不可行的事情。你不能误导人,如果有一些事情是做不到的,比如不可能的运输,或者他们想要降低价格到你没有盈利的地步,你就只能诚实地说:“抱歉,我做不到。”然后你只能拒绝。

美国外教

Lance: During the sample stage, what aspect is most important to you? Communication? Quality? Efficiency? Or something else?

I think if you’re if you’re getting a sample you want the sample to have it’s got to have quality right and the communication has to be really good with supplier I’m not really sure about the efficiency um and the pricing I don’t you don’t have pricing in there but I think the quality communication and pricing all have to be what I’m looking for oh so they has three yeah yeah yeah yeah I think so and yeah and if you want to throw in a fourth I mean you could say lead time too because if they have all those things but their lead time is like six months and you need things sooner than that then that’s automatically gonna take them out of the picture because their lead time is too long so those are the four things I’d probably look at I mean not for the sample necessarily but in terms of the item for that you’re going to need for production you’re going to want to look at the Quality you’re going to look at the cost how good’s your communication and what’s the price and the price and me I know this is a question about the sample stage but if you get beyond the sample stage I don’t think you got to throw in the price but you’re right so imag that with someone you needed a sample FL a supper right.

Chat GPT翻译:

我认为,如果你要获得样品,那么样品必须具备质量,与供应商的沟通必须非常良好。对于效率和定价,我不是很确定,你的问题里没有提到定价,但我认为质量、沟通和价格都必须符合我的要求。

如果你愿意加入第四个因素,那就是交货周期,因为即使他们在这三个方面表现出色,但如果交货周期是六个月,而你需要更快的交货,那么这就自动将他们排除在外,因为交货周期太长。这就是我可能会考虑的四个因素。

我说的并不一定是针对样品阶段的,但对于你打算用于生产的物品,你会关注质量、成本、沟通水平以及价格。我知道你的问题是关于样品阶段的,但如果你超越了样品阶段,我认为就需要考虑价格,你说得对,想象一下,如果你需要一个样品,一个晚餐,你可能也会考虑价格。

美国外教

Rolen: 那么,假设你现在有两家潜在供应商,你对他们的价格、质量、沟通这些都挺满意,是什么因素使你会有所倾向性呢?

Good performance of a supplier when they send SLE to you well this I mean the the good performance would be they deliver the supplier on time or they sample on time they do it at the cost that they agreed to um the communication is good but if you have two suppliers and everything else is relative relatively even you know in terms of costs and everything else I mean I think you have to look at then lead time and then also very important thing for me is location where is that supplier located in terms of where it has to deliver because Freight in the United States is very expensive I was looking at some freight cost the other day we have suppliers in Maine that charges we get charged like four to $600 for a truck and we have some from California that’s like six or 7,000 dollar for the same trck good point so it comes from the other side of the United States so you got to look at that too in terms of the overall cost sometimes people look at the PO and they say oh this one from California is one cent cheaper than the one from Maine and then well not so fast it cost us 7,000 to ship this in on a truck it costs us 400 to get this from Maine so you got to look at the total overall cost before you make it that decision too if everything else is equal right oh yeah it to me f that’s at overcross.

Chat GPT翻译:

供应商在向你寄送样品时的良好表现包括按时交付样品、按照他们同意的成本进行操作,而且沟通良好。但如果你有两个供应商,其他方面都相对平等,比如成本等等,那么我认为你必须看交货周期,而且对我来说非常重要的一点是供应商的地理位置,因为在美国,货运非常昂贵。

前几天我在看一些货运成本,我们有一些来自缅因州的供应商,他们收费大约四到六百美元一辆卡车,而我们从加利福尼亚州进货的卡车费用可能是六到七千美元,而这是相同的卡车。所以你也要考虑到这一点,要考虑到整体成本,有时候人们看到采购订单(PO)上写着:“哦,这个来自加利福尼亚的比缅因的便宜一分钱。”但等等,我们把这个从缅因州运来的卡车费用是400美元,而从加利福尼亚州运来的却是7000美元,所以在你做决定之前,你必须考虑到整体的成本,如果其他条件相等的话。哦对,对我来说这也是个关键的点。

美国外教

Lance: If you visit a supplier’s factory, what do you most hope to see? What behavior of the supplier do you value most during the visit?

if it’s an existing supplier one that I’m currently using I want to discuss discuss with them cost savings initiatives or initiatives that can help reduce lead time on shipments to our plant so we don’t have to carry as much inventory if there’s quality issues I’ll discuss that with them too now it’s a new supplier not one that we’ve ever worked with before um I guess what I would want to do is I’d want to see and hear from them as far as what kind of what kind of quality checks do you do um on your Machinery that runs our product let’s say they got some expensive Machinery that comes from Germany I’ve asked this question before if that M if that machine goes down do you carry enough spare parts to support it so that we can reliably know that that machine goes down you’re going to be able to get it up and running quickly or will someone from the factory support that machine it’s something people don’t ask a lot a lot of these companies have these very sophisticated high volume machines that come from places like Germany or Switzerland or places like that they’re very expensive very highend they’re very they run really well but if a part breaks on them you really have to have support for it especially if you don’t have a backup so I’ll may ask him that you know what’s your support on this machine how fast can you get something in here if you had a part is there a factory service person nearby um that can take care of it um what kind of quality checks do you do before you send you know products out to the door do you guys pull samples to check quality and verify that we’re getting you know what we we’re ordering um I would probably walk around the floor i’ take around the production floor is it very clean there is it messy does it look disorganized um you can see a lot by visiting a factory floor I mean there’s a lot of things you can see you can see people scrambling around people standing around in Q because the machine’s down or they got a bunch of junk sitting on the floor you know there’s a there’s a lot of things you look at and you really start you know taking the white glove treatment and kind of looking things over but I mean I think there’s some serious questions you ask too and that’s you know you know about the quality checks they do and about you know the machinery and how do they support it if something breaks down what’s going to happen do you have any offside storage capabilities in case raw material comes in do you have more warehousing this where do you put your raw materials you know it just because if you go into a factory and they have a very small area where they store the raw materials that tells you you’re going to be running things pretty lean you have big orders they’re going to be bringing stuff in I mean if they have an off-site Warehouse then you’re like well that’s good because especially if it’s close by then you know well the raw materials will come in when I need them you know it’s not it’s not something I need to worry about they have here they store things and they store things offside so you have that backup material so you make sure you’re not going to run short you know oh yeah yeah yes so you are not looking at human or but also the Factory The Warehouse or the machine right absolutely yeah take a good look at everything I wish I look at like this if if you were if you own the company that you’re in if you own the furniture company that you’re in what are the concerns that you’re going to have if you’re making this supplier like one of your key Partners I mean especially if they’re new I mean it’s one thing to have an established relationship with a supplier they know you you know them you know what you’re going to get they know what you’re I mean it’s that’s one thing but there’s a lot of things companies new suppliers try to hide and you got to really uncover it and look and try to find as much as you can I even when I was when I was up visiting A supplier in main I was actually looking at the labels to see where some of their who some of their customers were who is your customer who are they selling to besides us h yeah and I yeah so I want to see so you’re selling to another pharmaceutical company you’re selling to one of our suppliers so people that we know already have a relationship with them so that kind of makes you okay that’s good because you know you know then because I’m in the pharmaceutical business they’re also selling to pharmaceutical companies that’s good they’re in the same they’re selling material to the same companies or companies like my own right my supplier who buys we sell we buy our swabs from sterile swabs they sell packaging to them too okay so we know them we got to I mean so if I really want to be really proactive I’ll call up that swab company that I’m A supplier for and say hey we’re thinking about doing some business with XYZ packaging company um I understand you guys um do some business with them can you tell me anything about how how and and you know if you know a person there you have a relationship they’re going to offer it to you yeah they’re great they’re going to say you know they’re wonderful or they’re going to say yeah you know we’ had some issues or whatever you know you’re gonna find out right so yeah yeah yeah yeah you just have to dig dig as much as you can.

Chat GPT翻译:

如果是一家我目前正在使用的现有供应商,我希望与他们讨论节约成本的举措,或者能够减少发货到我们工厂的交货时间,这样我们就不必储备那么多库存。如果存在质量问题,我也会与他们讨论。

而对于新供应商,我想我会想要了解并听取他们关于产品运行所需机械的质量检查情况,比如他们是否有来自德国的昂贵机械。我之前曾问过这个问题,如果那台机器出了故障,他们是否携带足够的备件以支持它,使我们能够可靠地知道,如果机器出故障,他们能够迅速使其重新运行,或者工厂是否有人支持那台机器。这是一些人们不经常问的问题。

许多公司拥有那些来自德国、瑞士等地的非常复杂、高端的高产量机器,它们运行得非常好,但如果其中某个部件损坏,你确实需要有相应的支持,特别是如果你没有备用。我可能会问,关于这台机器的支持是什么样的,如果出现故障,他们有多快能够运送零部件过来,是否附近有工厂服务人员等。这是一些严肃的问题,你需要问的问题,比如他们的质量检查以及他们如何在发货之前检查产品的质量,他们是否抽样检查以验证我们得到的是否是我们订购的东西。

我可能会走一走工厂,看看生产车间是不是非常干净,是不是杂乱无章。你可以通过参观工厂车间看到很多东西,我是说你可以看到很多东西,你可以看到人们是不是正在到处奔波,人们是不是站在那里等着,因为机器出故障,或者他们有一堆垃圾放在地板上,你知道,有很多东西你可以看到,你真的开始对一切都进行仔细的检查。

我认为还有一些严肃的问题需要问,就是关于他们的质量检查,关于机械的问题,如果出了故障会如何支持,发生故障时会发生什么,是否有离岸仓储能力,以防原材料进来时有更多的仓储空间,他们把原材料放在哪里,因为如果你走进一家工厂,他们储存原材料的区域非常小,那就告诉你你会运营得非常紧凑,如果你有大订单,他们将会进货。如果他们有离岸仓库,你就会认为很好,尤其是如果它离得很近,那么你就知道原材料将会在我需要它们时进来,这不是我需要担心的事情。他们在这里存储东西,也在离岸存储,所以你有备用材料,确保你不会短缺。哦对,对,是的。所以你不只是看人,还要看工厂、仓库或机器,对吧?

是的,绝对的。看一切。我会这样看待,如果你拥有你所在公司,如果你拥有你所在公司,如果你将这个供应商视为你的关键合作伙伴之一,那么你会有哪些顾虑?特别是如果他们是新的供应商。与已经建立关系的供应商不同,他们了解你,你了解他们,你知道你会得到什么,他们知道你需要什么,这是一回事。

但是有很多新的供应商试图隐藏的东西,你必须真的揭开它,尽可能地了解。甚至当我去缅因州拜访供应商时,我实际上还查看了标签,看看他们的一些客户是谁,他们的客户除了我们之外,还有谁。哦对,我是这么想的,所以你们是在向另一家制药公司销售,除了我们之外,你们还在向我们的供应商之一销售。这就让你放心,因为我在制药行业,他们也在向制药公司销售,这是个好事,他们向与我公司类似的公司或类似我公司的公司销售原材料。我的供应商从它们那里购买,我们从它们那里购买无菌拭子,它们也向它们销售包装材料。好的,我们了解了,我们必须确保与它们有关系。

如果我真的想要非常主动,我会打电话给那家无菌拭子供应商,告诉他们我们正在考虑与 XYZ 包装公司做生意。我了解你们与他们有业务往来,你能告诉我一些关于他们的情况吗?如果你认识那里的人,你有关系,他们会向你提供信息,说他们很棒,或者说我们曾经有过一些问题,你会了解到的。

美国外教

Rolen: 我们经常与买手打交道,但是有时不太能抓得准他们的痛点,你能跟我说说你的日常工作流或者一些常见的痛点吗,作为买手

as a buyer my daily pain points are it varies okay from day today okay it varies a bit but I I would have to say my my major pain points are um production requirements where are we where are we at inventory wise are we if we’re behind on orders if we’re behind on raw material deliveries why are we behind on raw material deliveries and if we are behind what’s the reason for it so then I’ll reach out to my supplier and say hey this is a week late why are we why are you guys late and get the information as to why well if you’re late so when is it going to come in so then we’ll update the PO and we’ll go back to production and we’ll ask them um you know when do you absolutely have to have this buy because one of the pain points as as far as a buyer I can I’m concerned is Expediting Expediting materials to meet whether it’s customers dates or our production dates it’s a big pain point because you have you want to make sure that you’re making your customer happy first and foremost your customer’s happiness number one the other the other pain point and I check with our quality person quite a bit is do we have any material that came in into incoming inspection that was put into mrb you know the material review board something that needs it’s on quality hold what is the issue how do we need to get it out do we need to go to the supplier get Replacements um can we have somebody look at it and possibly use it as is how critical is it is it something we need for production and we don’t have time for them to build a new order so that’s another thing that we try to do a lot too is I me you look at quality issues uh on a daily basis anything that might impact production right um laid orders exped dining um right now we’re in a big crunch for Price reductions so we’re working on XXX projects which is gross margin Improvement so every day I’m a value I’m getting a lot of price quotes for different things stuff that we keep you know I may I may during the course of week I may send something out to quote two or three times to different suppliers just because XXX is like number one right now cost cost reduction probably isn’t your company every company right now so XXX is very important so I’m doing a lot of quoting right now to try to reduce our costs because it’s such a critical part right now is our Management’s you know Vision um but those are pretty much it you know I there’s like three real pain points for me and you know late orders quality issues and finding things to reduce costs on right now the big three for me at this time oh than yeah yeah got it and is there anything about over product such as the quality and prices so is anything about your daily work pin points as a buyer well I work in sourcing now so I find sourcing but as a buyer because I’ve worked in purchasing for many years um again I I my dat my pain points every day are down to the same things right as I kind of mentioned quality issues um if if if something supplier comes to me and wants to raise prices okay that could be the problem of the day so if I get a price increase from a sper then I have to scramble negotiate it lower I need to look at other Alternatives so we can get the prices down for like XXX but quality big one Expediting for production big one so there’s a lot of things

Chat GPT翻译:

作为采购员,我的日常困扰因素有所变化,每天都有一些波动,但我必须说我的主要痛点包括:

  1. 生产需求和库存状况: 我经常需要评估我们的生产状态和库存水平。如果我们订单滞后或原材料交货出现延误,我会联系供应商了解延误原因,并确定材料何时可用。挑战在于加急处理材料,以满足客户或生产截止日期。
  2. 质量问题: 我经常与我们的质量部门沟通,以解决进入收货检验并由于质量问题被放入Mrb(物料审查委员会)的材料。了解问题的性质,是否需要更换,以及对生产的重要性是管理与质量相关挑战的关键方面。
  3. 价格降低(XXX项目): 目前,我们正在进行毛利率改善(XXX)项目,强调成本降低。我花费大量时间获取不同供应商的价格报价,以找到成本有效的解决方案。
  4. 价格上涨: 如果供应商提出提价,这可能成为当天的问题。我需要迅速协商以降低价格,需要考虑其他替代方案,以便降低成本。

这是我作为采购员每天的主要困扰因素。我现在从事采购工作,但由于我在采购领域工作了很多年,这些痛点在很大程度上保持一致。

美国外教

第三次对话(2023年12月16日)

Rolen: 你觉得采购中比较让你兴奋的事情是什么呢?

well I mean for my personal business my my own it’s like I can’t I don’t know if you ever go fishing and your you ever go fishing and throw a fishing rod out and you land a big one you know the excitement you get when you bring it into the shore and you got this huge fish that’s kind of what it is for me sometime I went I had a sale this summer um just a block and a half away from here it was real close to my home and there’s all kinds of really cool military Collectibles and Vietnamese stuff from the war and all kinds of stuff right just and I bought I don’t know maybe a thousand some dollars worth of stuff over like three or four week period when they were selling the stuff off and I made just tons of money I made enough money to actually pay for my vacation to the Philippines in October and September I made that much money the air ticket the money the you know it was just it was just one of those things that and it and the thing that’s exciting about it is when you get when you get an experience and you buy a lot of things and you know what something cost when somebody prices something out and you look at it you go wow that’s really cheap and you’ve already know well I seen those things sell for like $200 and they’re asking five or something like that you you just know you’re making money right so you get excited and that’s kind of how it works in my private in my personal thing my online business with eBay at work it’s different I mean you know you’re you’re if you can get a better price and you have you get you introduce a new supplier saves the company a lot of money you put that in as a cost Improvement I mean you get of course you get adab boys and people love you and and whatever it’s it’s it’s you know I I was actually recognized earlier this summer because we had a GMI project um gross margin Improvement and how who could enter the most um log the most cases for um cost reductions in packaging or whatever area it was and I actually had the most um entries of any of the people in global procurement so when there was a big meeting about this um it was you know big everybody was in the lunchroom and there’s like pack with everybody they announced my name and I ended up getting something too like a certificate or something as well so those are the kind of things motivation you know per personally motivating things at work and financially motivating things when you’re own your own business right yeah yeah I think if we don’t have motivation we cannot do one thing persistent yeah consistent yeah you have to have passion no matter what you do in life.

Chat GPT翻译:

当我在谈论我的个人业务时,有一种兴奋感,就好像你钓鱼时扔出鱼竿,然后你钓到了一条大鱼。当你把它拉到岸边时,你会感到兴奋,因为你得到了一条巨大的鱼。有一次,这样的情景发生在我夏天的一次销售中,距离我家只有一个街区半的地方。那里有各种酷炫的军事收藏品和越战时期的越南物品等等。我在那里购买了大约一千多美元的商品,大约在三到四个星期的时间里。我赚了很多钱,足以支付我在十月去菲律宾度假的费用。机票、旅费,所有的钱都来自这次销售。这是一种令人兴奋的感觉,当你经历过很多购物经验,你知道某样东西的成本,当有人定价某样东西时,你会惊叹:“哇,这真便宜!”因为你已经知道,这些东西有时能卖到200美元,而他们只要价值五美元。你知道你在赚钱。

对于我的在线业务,比如在eBay上工作,情况就不同了。你知道,如果你能以更好的价格从新的供应商那里得到商品,并且能为公司省下很多钱,你就能将这些作为成本改进纳入。当然,你会得到赞扬,大家会对你另眼相看。我在今年夏天实际上得到了认可,因为我们有一个GMI项目,即毛利率提高项目。我们记录了哪个人能提供最多的成本降低案例,涉及包装或其他领域。我实际上在全球采购部门有最多的记录。当有一个关于这个的大会议时,人们都聚在午餐室里,然后他们宣布了我的名字。最后我还得到了一个奖状之类的东西。这就是工作中个人激励的一些事情,还有在自己的业务中在财务上的激励。是的,是的,我认为如果我们没有动力,我们无法坚持做一件事,要一直有激情,无论生活中做什么。

美国外教

Rolen: 我想听听你的人生观?

I think my Outlook in life so I’ve always been thought of as a very strong person my I’m the oldest son in a family of like six or seven seven kids all together I was the oldest boy in the family I’ve always been thought of as a strong person you know strong individual person um I was married for 30 years and I got divorced and it was a very very difficult time in my life and I think what I learned about myself as I am first of all I am a strong person because I rebounded from and I went through some really hard times but I think you just have to be true to yourself you know be honest I always try to be honest with everybody through work uh my kids whatever I I try to be honest I try to um do my best in everything that I do uh I guess my outlook on life is you know some sometimes you make your own breaks in life you know some I hear people a lot of times they want to be victims oh I this happened to me because of this or my cin my employers you know whatever I think people do that too often especially in the United States I think you have to make your own breaks sometimes you know if you need if you need to work harder than somebody else they put in the time to achieve a goal you got to do it if there’s a different job out there that you’re looking at um and you need to get credentials or you need to you know improve yourself in some area to get that job you go out and do those things right it’s it’s about it’s about being a better person improving yourself you know really reaching for the Stars right I mean reach high you know set your goals really high right yeah um you know I have three three sons and all of them I think we’ve kind of pushed him for that you know my oldest son’s a doctor the other son is an accountant you know he’s working on a CPA and the other guy’s going to school for engineering they’re they’re professionals and they’re doing well in life and I think it’s the philosophy that we have you know just do the best you can you know you know if if you think you can reach this level then aim for this level you know keep going higher you know you always want to be you always want to reach and attain a higher goal than what um you you know people are expecting of you so that’s pretty much My Philosophy you know just be honest work hard um you know strive to be the best that you can and push make personal goals for yourself and set them high.

Chat GPT翻译:

我觉得我对生活有一种独特的看法。一直以来,人们都认为我是一个非常坚强的人,我是一个家庭中六七个孩子中的大哥,也是家中的长子。我曾经结过30年的婚,但最终离婚。那是我生活中非常艰难的一段时期,但我从中学到了一些关于自己的东西。首先,我是一个坚强的人,因为我从困境中反弹了出来。我经历了一些非常艰难的时刻,但我认为你必须对自己真诚,坦诚相待。无论是在工作中还是与孩子们相处时,我总是试图保持诚实。我努力在做的每一件事情中尽力而为。

我对生活的看法是,有时候你需要自己创造机会。我经常听到人们总是想成为受害者,觉得某些事情发生是因为某种原因,比如雇主的问题等等。我认为人们在美国尤其经常陷入这种思维方式。有时候,你必须自己争取机会。如果你需要比别人更加努力工作,付出更多时间来实现目标,那就去做。如果有一份你心仪的工作,你需要取得相关资格或在某个领域提升自己,那就去做这些事情。这就是成为一个更好的人,不断提升自己,真正追求卓越的过程。

我的人生观是,有时候你必须创造自己的机会。努力工作,争取更好的自己,真正追求卓越,设定高远的目标。我有三个儿子,我们一直鼓励他们追求卓越。我的大儿子是医生,另一个是会计师,正在攻读注册会计师资格,最小的正在攻读工程学位。他们都是成功的专业人士,我认为这与我们的哲学观念有关。只要尽力而为,设定高远的目标,不断追求更好的自己,这就是我的人生哲学。

美国外教


  1. Ben 的头像
    Ben

    如果你下次有机会跟这个buyer沟通,我有一个问题希望听听他们的回答:

    Let’s imagine a scenario:

    1. You are looking for an overseas supplier (let’s say China) and you have all the worries, concerns and questions mentioned above (e.g. quality, reliability, and communication and etc).

    2. You happen to find a potential supplier on Google and you browse their website.

    3. And most of your worries, concerns and questions can be well answered on that website while you are browsing.

    My question is:

    1. Would you be inclined to initiate contact or make an inquiry with this supplier solely because their website has alleviated your initial worries?

    2. Furthermore, in your view, how impactful is it for a supplier’s website to proactively resolve potential buyers’ doubts? Does this level of transparency influence your trust and willingness to engage in business?

    1. Rolen 的头像

      收到,下周我会给你反馈的哈

  2. Lance 的头像
    Lance

    Hi Rolen,

    我有几个问题也想听这个buyer的回答

    1. During the sample stage, what aspect is most important to you? Communication? Quality? Efficiency? Or something else?

    2. If you visit a supplier’s factory, what do you most hope to see? What behavior of the supplier do you value most during the visit?

  3. Ben 的头像
    Ben

    谢谢Rolen花自己的钱来帮助四两群友啊,我作为群主替大家谢谢你了。

    另外,真的是很神奇啊,可能你之前也没想到你的个人博客竟然还可以这样用,竟然还可以操作。

    我预测你的博客要火

    1. Rolen 的头像

      嘿嘿 我也没想到

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