Alone, we can achieve our goals, but true success comes from collaboration and from working together.
No business can operate without a healthy network of partners, suppliers, or manufactures. For the business to benefit and grow, it needs to ensure this network grows with it.
So let’s take a look at what a business can do for its partners and suppliers to help them grow:
Let’s see this with an example: If the business is a department store, they have multiple brand partners for every single product they sell. So, …
Provide regular sales reports
The department store needs to provide a quarterly sale report as well as an annual one to each partner showcasing the numbers. Apart from numbers, these reports should also show patterns. This way, the brand partners can understand how their products are doing. Overall, the department store also gets a clearer picture of which brand relationships they should focus more on based on their sales.
Some additional information that you can get out of this report is brand-based exceptions. For example, during Back-to-School season, because of high demand, people depend a little less on the brand of the product, so everything that is in stock gets nearly equal attention and sale. However, during the rest of the academic year, because overall demand is less, people are more likely to purchase an item of their preferred brand. This happens for something as small as sticky notes to bigger items like book bags.
When brand partners have this data, they are able to tailor their supplies and manufacturing accordingly. While big brands can afford to maintain inventory year-round, smaller, more niche brands cannot. So they can easily scale back on production during the bigger part of the school year.
Provide regular customer feedback
This is another important piece of information that brand partners need. Customers are often vocal about their feedback, especially if it is bad. And this information tends not to go beyond the store, so brand partners are not able to act on it as regularly as they would like or sometimes at all.
For example, if a particular notebook’s paper is causing paper cuts, customers are likely to complain. But the notebook is still selling well enough, so the department store is not forwarding the customer feedback to the brand in order to not let it affect their relationship. However, if such feedback is passed to the company, they may be able to work on that or even stop the currently malfunctioning supply. While this may not necessarily increase their sales, it may improve their brand recall and impact on the customer.
Provide regular demographic sale report
Demographic sales reports show the brand partner exactly who is buying their product so they can refine to their taste more and work to diversify their audience to increase it.
A small brand trying to sell minimal black-and-white stationery in a department store near a kindergarten is not going to do well. Kids like color and animation in their stationery.
A small brand trying to sell the same near a college will do excellently!
Again, we will take the example of a department store that stocks a variety of brands coming from multiple suppliers. So it is crucial to maintain those relationships well. This is what a store can provide them:
Provide inventory report
Provide a monthly inventory report for faster-selling products like sketch pens that are always in demand by college students, art classes, high schoolers as well as toddlers. It is such an item that there is demand for specific brands and other variants equally around the year.
Toddlers and schoolchildren might not be too specific about brands, but hobbyists and college students are likely to be.
Therefore the inventory report for sketch pens needs to show that. Suppliers need to know how much inventory to provide to which store, and they should be able to forecast this accurately based on past inventory reports.
Inventory reports should also include the various factors that may have affected the rise or fall in demand. If there was a new inter-school art competition, there might have been a sudden rise in the demand for sketch pens, but that may not be a regular, yearly, or even quarterly competition, so a similar demand should not be planned for.
Product quality report
Suppliers need to be given a quarterly report on their product quality. This feedback comes to the store from the customers, or the store may itself be accessing the products. There are exceptions, of course, of manufacturing issues, but if the product does not maintain high-quality quarter after quarter, the store might have to change suppliers.
These reports help the suppliers ensure their production is going smoothly and if there are any issues, to check their processes.
All of this can happen much better and more smoothly if all parties involved with a business have real-time access to reports, customer feedback, and a clear bird’s eye view of their part of things.
The easiest way to do this is with a Dynamics 365 portal for partners. We offer customer Portal for Dynamics, which provides all the necessary features for smooth partner management and operations.
Take a look at what it has:
- Dashboard: With a personalized dashboard, everyone can keep an eye on the changing information at every moment.
- 360° Entity Management: You can control all the entities in your CRM and portal with their parent-child relationship easily.
- User Management: Portal admin can streamline all users, from partners, staff, and customers, so everyone can access what they need to carry out their tasks smoothly.
- Role-based access: With role-based access, there is assured security. Based on the role, people can have a view or edit rights.
- Configure Active CRM Layout: Fetch any number of entities from the CRM to the portal in one go so you can get started with using the portal for your business as quickly as possible.
Any business wants to ensure its partners and suppliers are happy and always growing. But to get there, it needs to ensure its partners and suppliers are always well-informed. Collaboration is the key to success.
With Dynamics 365 portal for partners, your business can do just that. Request a demo, and we will walk you through exactly how you can use it to work with your partners and grow your business.
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