Why should you expand your manufacturer network?

Image of a lit-up supplier network of a city from birds-eye view.
Growing your manufacturing supplier network is now easier and more vital than ever. With a larger network, you gain access to new knowledge and are protected during production stops.

When sourcing parts from various manufacturing suppliers, there are a variety of choices that must be made. From analyzing whether these manufacturers have the ability to manufacture for your needs, or researching who in your network has access to technologies such as CNC machining, there are a number of choices to be made with every new project. 

While making these choices may be difficult, having a large network of suppliers to select from ensures that you consistently have access to the top prices, services, and technologies as you protect your supply chain from shortages or delays.

Avoiding Supply Chain Delays

One of the largest downfalls of a small supplier network is the impact of unpredictable situations which may affect a supplier’s ability to deliver.

Especially in cases where the majority of your suppliers are under similar jurisdictions or are depending on the same technologies to produce, any issue that faces one supplier is more likely to have an impact on your entire network. Thus, diversifying your network by establishing connections in various communities and with varying skills can ensure your company has the ability to weather unprecedented changes.

Easy access to new technologies

With only a few suppliers to select from, it may be difficult to ensure that your company has access to the latest technologies in manufacturing such as CNC machining. These new technologies may provide you with faster delivery times, better prices, and more customizable parts. 

Though a small network of suppliers may be attributed to years of established trust and history with suppliers, these undiversified networks may be preventing you from accessing and learning about the newest technologies in the future.

Improved Prices

Having access to multiple choices when sourcing manufacturing parts means that you will have not only increased knowledge when it comes to price standards, but also enhanced access to competitive bids and an upper hand in negotiations. 

The creation of a competitive atmosphere means that suppliers are upheld to higher standards due to the consistent need to win contracts over others in your network. Your ability to bargain competitively will go up when your network grows and your knowledge of industry expectations of suppliers increases.

Knowledge Transfer

The concept of a ‘network effect’ states that when a larger number of individuals use a service more often, the service’s value increases for all customers.

This means that bringing in new suppliers into a rapidly-growing network will also benefit them as they consistently learn about the latest standards being upheld by similar manufacturers. 

Joining large networks may also enable cross-supplier collaboration and innovation which will benefit the local manufacturing industry, bring the newest technologies to your company’s disposal and enhance the quality of service for all clients impacted.

How can I start expanding my network?

Whether it’s starting with a simple introduction or taking the first steps to develop a long-term partnership, taking these first steps to grow your supplier network will allow for your company to continually stay ahead of the game and be as efficient as possible. 

Axya’s simple and transparent outsourcing platform enables companies to source their custom and non-recurring metalworking parts 90% faster than with conventional methods. Is your current supplier not available at the moment? Send your RFQ in less than 5 minutes to our network of 200+ machine shops and enter new contracts within a few days!

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Why should you expand your manufacturer network?