Successful Supplier Onboarding  – an important element in your P2P automation. 

Supplier Onboarding service and software providers frequently discuss their cutting-edge supplier onboarding tools to gather information from suppliers, but all of the expensive deployments can be in vain if your vendors fail to jump on board with the new process. In other words, the success of your supplier onboarding projects is directly associated with their willingness of your suppliers to participate in the effort and use your chosen system. The only true way to ensuring the success of your new supplier onboarding program is to begin the process with the end in mind. You need to look at how your suppliers interact with your company and offer up solutions that can make their life easier. The key to a successful Supplier Onboarding project is you willingness and ability to make the entire process a win / win for both you and your supplier. Here are some useful tips to help you achieve your supplier onboarding goals more easily:

1 The Proactive Approach Always Pays off

Supplier onboarding is the most important component of any enterprise core functionality expansion process that includes collaboration. You have to be proactive all the time if you want supplier onboarding to succeed. Also, you have to do adequate prep work to motivate all your suppliers from the very beginning, there has to be no excuse for them to hesitate or withdraw.

2 Prioritize Supplier Onboarding

It would be wrong to think that all of your targeted suppliers will be onboard when and how you want them. That’s why you have to prioritize the process. You should create priority groups and then track the effective participation of each group with cohort analysis according to your plans. You should contemplate if certain commodities or types of suppliers need to be singled out for special consideration. Then create specific Supplier Onboarding campaigns to maximize participation.

3 Plan How to Connect With Your Suppliers

It’s a good idea for your suppliers to use an online web portal to ensure proper communications during your collaboration initiative. Make sure to poll your suppliers in an effort to identify suppliers that have had positive experiences. Positive word of mouth from a supplier about your organization can be an additional ally for success. Make sure your Supplier portal is configurable and connected to many different variations of supplier onboarding workflow, email, and campaign management tools. If your provider can not make these necessary configurations then you need to find a new provider.

4 Implement an Easy and Simple Registration Procedure

It’s important to remember that you need to keep your suppliers motivated. The supplier onboarding registration process is supposed to be simple, not an obstacle. Try not to overload suppliers with questions or forms to fill out but make sure you do collect everything you need upfront so you do not have to bother your suppliers too much.

5 Contemplate Future Growth Plans

If you’re planning a merger or acquisition for your organization, you should expect to see an increase in the number of companies that will need to flow through your new suppliers onboarding process. As a result, you will need to make sure that the process you define today can be modified and expanded in the future,  Future proofing your process should not be too hard if you select the right supplier portal solution that has dynamic supplier onboarding campaign management.

6 Prioritize Your Implementation Processes

The best way to gain support inside your company to make your supplier onboarding process a high priority is to contemplate the various enterprise functions that you will improve as a result of collecting clean and validated data. Think about a higher ROI from your E-Invoicing,Vendor Catalog, E-Procurement and various Supply Chain Financing solutions.   You need to identify the critical points in the implementation process and focus your time and resources on them. You can rest assured that suppliers appreciate all efforts that give positive results, or penalize your inefficiency with the lack of cooperation and participation you’re expecting. After communicating the increase benefits to your team, you need to identify the critical points in the implementation process and focus your time and resources on them. You can rest assured that suppliers appreciate all efforts that give positive results, or penalize your inefficiency with the lack of cooperation and participation you’re expecting.

7 Provide Supplier Onboarding Training for Employees and Suppliers

Training can help your suppliers create the right kind of the initial perception of your organization’s requirements. Make them feel confident that their participation will be a positive experience. Your supplier onboarding portal provider should be able to support your suppliers with knowledge bases, FAQ, on-line help files, Video tutorial and phone support.

Joe Flynn is a Co-founder of Lavante and writes for both The Hub and his site Vendor Portal Expert.