Vendor Management Software

Written by Elisabeth Forsythe
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If you’re the purchasing manager of a busy plant or factory, there’s probably a lot of materials you need to order on a weekly or even daily basis. That means you need to have instant access to your vendors--who they are, their contact information, what they supply for the company. And flipping through a Rolodex or searching through old invoices just isn’t the most efficient way to keep the lines of communication open. Especially if more than one person needs access to this information. That’s why many businesses have installed vendor management software.

A vendor management software system is like an electronic address book. You can enter in critical data on all your vendors: your contact within each company and their position, telephone and fax numbers, mailing and e-mail addresses, and more. You can assign vendors in groups according to what types of materials they supply. That way, if you know what you need--say, copier paper--but not exactly who to order from, you can look up the “Office Supplies” group to get the right supplier.

You can also write notes in each vendor file to record your history with them. Then you have documentation of any problems you may have with them--for example, if they neglect to send the right materials or short your order. On the other hand, you can also note your outstanding vendors, so other employees who may need to place an order know which supplier is best.

Track Purchasing with Vendor Management Software

Vendor management software can be used in several different ways to offer a variety of benefits to your company. Some can also be used to generate reports. With this feature, you can get a clear view of which vendors you use most, and where your purchasing dollars are being spent. So forget the Yellow Pages--you can keep your suppliers and purchasing organized with vendor management software.

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