Are you just a number to your vendor?

I recently witnessed a small business owner trying to convince a large telephone company that her business phone was her lifeline.  She had scheduled a move in advance to avoid any disruption in service only to have the phone company shut off her business phone without activating the line at her new location.  She was then promised by management that the new phone line would be installed the next day.  In reality, it took the phone company THREE days to install the line at her new location.  How much business do you think was lost thanks to the big company mentality of “we’ll get to it when we can”?  More importantly, how much business would you have lost in this situation?

To make matters worse, the owner of this small business was promised by management of the phone company that the phone would be installed the next day, which was already one day late from the original order.  Well, needless to say, when no one showed up, more calls were made and more promises were made by management.

In manufacturing, if your ERP system goes down are you just another number to your vendor? Is your ERP vendor a big company provider that has basically put you out to dry now that the deal is done with no regard for the impact their response time to you is having on your business?  Where has customer support gone in this era?  What happened to building relationships that result in your vendor knowing who you are and what your needs are, not only in the system, but in your business as well?

Posted by Joe Di Zazzo, President & CEO, ProfitKey International

One thought on “Are you just a number to your vendor?

  1. Jay Snow, Marketing Manager at MTI Systems, Inc.

    Joe, customer support is absolutely critical when a customer determines where to buy. Just yesterday I chose the Tractor Supply company over Lowes. That’s not to say I don’t like Lowes. They are a great company. The funny thing is that the Tractor Supply Company provided a little better pre-sales support. They wanted my business and wanted me to know they were there to help down the road. They gave me the feeling I wasn’t going to be just another number… so I bought my log-splitter from the Tractor Supply Company.

Leave a Reply