sIf you have a disputes with one of your suppliers, you should first manage to check for any documentation or contracts. Firstly, you have to see if they’ve breached for any of the terms or conditions. Explore, the documents to see if there are any dispute resolution processes.
If there are no resolutions available in the contract or agreement, consider using the following process:
Discuss The Problem with The Supplier
Early intervention by management is essential to diffuse uncomfortable situations. Also, to manage and resolve more heightened disputes to the satisfaction of all parties. Often the supplier isn’t aware there’s a problem.
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Take notes of the conversation and try to negotiate an agreement. Concurrently, which should include a suitable timeframe to resolve the situation. Once you come to an agreement with your supplier, follow up with a written letter or email outlining everything that’s been agreed upon. Further, make sure you and your supplier sign the document as agreed.
Notify with A Letter of Complaint
If you’re unsuccessful in negotiating a resolution or the supplier refuses to discuss the issue with you; Write a letter of complaint. In your letter of complaint, include details of the problem and any references, or copies of documents to support your claim. For example, if they’re refusing to replace faulty goods, provide your purchase order.
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Make sure you include the date in your letter and give your supplier a reasonable amount of time to respond. You could send the letter via registered post, so you have a record that they’ve received it. If you send an email, mark it as ‘read receipt’; Usually found in the tracking or tools function of your email software.
Mediate with The Relevant Industry Association
Industry associations normally provide services of mediation of any disputes within the industry. Contact your relevant industry associations to help you manage the disputes. If the supplier is also the member of same business association things will be easy. If not the associations will contact the one with which the supplier is associated to settle the disputes.
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Most of these industry bodies have professional standards their members must follow. For example, if your accountant is a member of Certified Practicing Accountant (CPA) and you feel they’ve overcharged you, consider contacting CPA Association. They may be able to recommend a number of ways to resolve the problem.
Seek Help of a Dispute Resolution Body
If all other efforts to manage and solve supplier disputes fail, it might be necessary to contact a resolution body. Seek advice from a lawyer and only as a last option, go to the courts. As it often ends up a very lengthy and costly exercise. There are commercial businesses that offer dispute resolution services that may be cheaper than legal costs.
Managing Disputes with suppliers can be costly and time consuming for all involved. Developing strong supplier relationships is the best way to avoid disputes. Obviously allows you to maintain inventory, access new products and secure discounted materials.
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