Supplier Onboarding Takes Flight 

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has been in the news as of late for its insanely long lines and wait times.  The agency that costs taxpayers $7.5 billion a year employs 40,000-plus screeners and 15,000-plus administrators to check documents and scan luggage in order to keep us safe. Contrary to what you may think, the TSA is very similar to your supplier onboarding process.

Similar to managing the security of our nation’s air travelers, onboarding suppliers can be a very tricky and difficult undertaking.  Gathering information, documents, and the forms needed for supplier compliance requires time and precision, and even in the best circumstances it is never 100% perfect. If businesses had as many people working for them as the TSA does, it would be extremely helpful, but most likely your business doesn’t have that many employees; so having an excellent supplier onboarding process is vital.

Big and small businesses alike always seem to have problems with their supplier onboarding process. The process is almost always time-consuming, expensive, and requires multiple people and departments working together to gather volumes of supplier information. Your business is likely spending valuable resources and money on an onboarding system that isn’t working as well as you might have thought.

When dealing with the supplier onboarding process, both the buyer and the supplier are facing different challenges. Both parties have specific duties to fulfill. Buyers have to find a scalable solution to communicate effectively across a massive supplier population while relying on limited resources;  suppliers must respond quickly and precisely to all requests. Trading this essential information between each company’s different departments can be a bit hectic, but a well executed supplier onboarding process will increase supplier participation while decreasing errors and reducing overall costs.

5 Tips to Help Your Supplier Onboarding Process

Here are some tips to guarantee that your supplier onboarding process is successful:

  • Make sure that your supplier onboarding process is uniform across all locations.
  • Automate your process by using supplier self-service portal can save you time, money, and ensures that the data is always updated.
  • Reduce the threat of fraud and improve your communication with the supplier by implementing data quality regulations and validation rules
  • Thoroughly verify new suppliers to avoid supplier risk and reduce fraud. To ensure supplier compliance and reduce supplier risk, use uniform checklists and workflows throughout all systems and departments.
  • Use your accurate, up-to-date, and validated supplier information within your business to help other systems stay uniform.

The goals of both the TSA and supplier onboarding process is that both parties validate and check documents and information for security purposes. The supplier onboarding process needs to onboard suppliers quickly in order to do business more quickly; this way your business can start buying and the suppliers can start selling their products/services as quickly as possible. Without a successful process in place, you could be losing precious time and money.

Leverage these 5 tips helpful tips and get your supplier onboarding process to take flight!