A friendly, respectful relationship with suppliers is critical to a contractor’s ongoing project success. A reliable and loyal supplier understands the many variables of the construction industry and will be willing to put in the extra effort required to meet your requirements. Here are some tips for developing and maintaining a solid professional relationship between contractors and suppliers.
- Seek recommendations: Begin your search for a supplier with recommendations from colleagues, friends and industry professionals. Direct recommendations from people you know and trust are the best resources, but if necessary, you can check construction industry publications and similar resources to find reputable suppliers. Tell the supplier who recommended him or her and why. This will show the company that word about their service is getting around and may result in a reward for your source.
- Trust your instincts: After making contact with your potential supplier, you’ll most likely have a first impression that can be the basis for further evaluation. Was there a good rapport between you? Did the supplier understand your needs and seem interested in helping you succeed? A positive first impression is a good sign that your later interactions will be productive.
- Ensure high-quality, compliant materials: Make sure the material available through the potential supplier is compliant with all appropriate regulations, quality standards and legal requirements.
- Maintain open communications: Communicate frequently and openly with your supplier. If problems occur, make sure they’re made known immediately. When service or quality is particularly good, tell your supplier about it. Remain willing to work through problems without hostility or accusations.
- Reward your supplier: After finding a trustworthy and reliable supplier, do everything possible to bring them more business. Include extra terms in your contracts that are beneficial to them, or provide a financial incentive such as a bonus or cash award for superior service when the project is finished.
Construction industry professionals can rely on Construction Monitor for the most detailed and up-to-date building permit data from communities throughout the United States. Contact us today for more information on maintaining and supporting the vital relationship between contractors and suppliers.
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