Supplier Management: Process and Digital Solution with Wonnda

Updated on January 8, 2024
In this article
In this article

In today’s fast-paced business environment, keeping up with an ever-expanding network of suppliers can be a daunting task. Traditional methods often prove insufficient, leading to inefficiencies, miscommunications, and missed opportunities. The challenges posed by these outdated systems underscore the pressing need for a modern, digital approach.

What is Supplier Management?

Supplier management, also known as supplier relationship management (SRM), is a strategic approach to effectively oversee and optimize interactions with suppliers. It includes activities aimed at ensuring that the procurement of goods and services aligns with an organization’s needs, objectives, and standards. By establishing strong and mutually beneficial relationships with suppliers, organizations can enhance supply chain efficiency, reduce risks, maintain product quality, and drive cost-effectiveness while promoting ethical and sustainable practices.

How does Supplier Management Work?

Supplier management operates through a structured process that involves various stages. Initially, organizations identify potential suppliers based on specific criteria such as quality, cost, and reliability. Supplier performance is continuously assessed against key performance indicators (KPIs) and quality benchmarks.

Communication and collaboration are key, allowing both parties to address issues, share information, and build trust. Supplier management also involves risk mitigation, cost optimization, and the promotion of ethical and sustainable practices, ensuring a well-functioning and resilient supply chain.

Key features of effective supplier management

Effective supplier management encompasses several critical features, including:

Supplier Collaboration

This involves digital transactions and human interactions between an organization and its suppliers as they collaborate to deliver materials or supplies for finished products, fostering a cooperative and productive relationship.

Supplier Onboarding

Supplier relationship management processes encompass the discovery and validation of suppliers, establishing interconnectivity, integrating with enterprise systems, and enabling seamless B2B transactions to streamline the onboarding process.

Simplified and Speedy Supplier Onboarding

Ensuring that the onboarding process is efficient and user-friendly, allowing suppliers to integrate quickly into the supply chain.

Supplier Relationship Management

This involves various procurement and supply chain activities aimed at cultivating mutually beneficial relationships with suppliers, managing interactions with third-party entities, and building strategies tailored to different types of supplier relationships.

Supplier Lifecycle Management

Encompassing a wide range of activities, including supplier selection, onboarding, contract management, payment administration, and termination processes, ensuring comprehensive management throughout the supplier’s lifecycle.

Supplier Information Management

The systematic collection, maintenance, and utilization of supplier-related data derived from extensive communication with suppliers, aiding in informed decision-making and enhanced supplier relationships. Effective supplier management incorporates these features to optimize supplier relationships and ensure a resilient and efficient supply chain.

Why is Supplier Management Important?

Supplier management is crucial for various reasons. At its core, effective supplier management allows businesses to ensure that they’re working with partners that meet their standards in terms of quality, reliability, and cost-effectiveness. This directly impacts the quality of products or services delivered to end customers.

Good supplier relationships translate to smooth operations, fewer disruptions, and enhanced product quality. Furthermore, as markets become increasingly competitive, businesses that can proficiently manage, evaluate, and select suppliers often enjoy better market positioning, profitability, and resilience against supply chain shocks.

What are the benefits of supplier management?

Effective supplier management offers several benefits to organizations, including:

  • Cost Reduction: Improved negotiation, cost analysis, and collaboration with suppliers can lead to reduced procurement costs, resulting in increased profitability.
  • Quality Assurance: Close monitoring and evaluation of supplier performance ensure that products and services meet quality standards and compliance requirements.
  • Risk Mitigation: Supplier management helps identify and mitigate supply chain risks, such as disruptions, delays, or financial instability among suppliers.
  • Efficiency Improvement: Streamlining procurement processes, including onboarding and ordering, leads to increased operational efficiency.
  • Innovation and Collaboration: Effective supplier relationships foster innovation and collaboration, allowing organizations to access new technologies and market insights.
  • Enhanced Supplier Performance: Regular evaluation and feedback motivate suppliers to improve their performance, leading to better products and services.

In summary, supplier management is a strategic approach that contributes to cost reduction, quality assurance, risk mitigation, and overall supply chain improvement while fostering collaboration and innovation. These benefits help organizations stay competitive, resilient, and responsive in today’s dynamic business environment.

4 Problems with Traditional Supplier Management Methods

Trade Fairs

Though perceived as beneficial for finding new suppliers, the process is both costly and time-consuming. Between travel expenses and time spent networking, there’s still no assurance of securing appropriate suppliers for your needs.

Excel Sheets

Initially seen as a straightforward solution, Excel sheets can easily become cluttered and disorganized. As the number of suppliers grows, maintaining up-to-date information becomes a chore, and effective collaboration amongst teams can suffer.

Transparency & Control

A significant downside to older supplier management practices is the diminished transparency and control. For instance, at trade fairs, there’s no guaranteed method to verify the reliability of a potential supplier. Similarly, tracking accurate data in Excel becomes an uphill battle.

Private Label Manufacturers

These suppliers, crucial for businesses, produce products specific to your brand. The stakes are high as the product quality directly impacts the brand’s reputation. Traditional methods falter in ensuring these manufacturers consistently meet required standards.

Supplier management process flow with Wonnda


The process begins with the easy onboarding of suppliers into the Wonnda platform. This involves creating profiles for each supplier, inputting essential data such as their services, pricing structures, and previous client reviews. The digital format facilitates quick and efficient onboarding, reducing the time taken in manual processes and ensuring all suppliers have uniform data sets in the system.


Once onboarded, suppliers become a part of the Wonnda database, making it easier for businesses to search and identify potential partners based on specific criteria, such as product type, delivery times, or price points. The platform’s intelligent search capability highlights the best matches, allowing businesses to make informed decisions quickly.

Monitoring and Evaluating:

As businesses work with suppliers, Wonnda allows for continuous monitoring and evaluation. This involves tracking order deliveries, checking quality standards, and gathering feedback. The platform aggregates this data, providing insights into each supplier’s performance over time.

Collaboration and Communication:

One of the standout features of Wonnda is its emphasis on collaboration. The platform has in-built communication tools, making it easy for teams to discuss suppliers, share feedback, and make collective decisions. This ensures everyone involved in the supplier management process is aligned and informed.

Continuous Improvement:

With all the data at their fingertips, businesses can engage in data-driven negotiations, foster stronger relationships with high-performing suppliers, and ensure consistent improvement in their supply chain operations. The platform’s analytical tools also provide insights into market trends, helping businesses stay ahead of the curve.

By integrating these steps, Wonnda provides an end-to-end supplier management solution, ensuring businesses can operate efficiently and maintain the highest standards in their operations.


Traditional methods of supplier management, such as trade fairs and Excel sheets, can be time-consuming and cumbersome. It’s time to ditch the outdated methods and embrace a digital solution like Wonnda. With Wonnda, you can save time and effort, stay organized, collaborate with your team, and streamline your processes.

Plus, Wonnda’s digital solution allows for complete transparency and control, so you can ensure that your private label manufacturers are meeting your standards. Sign up below and give Wonnda a try to see the difference it can make for your business.

Create your next product line with Wonnda

Our platform lets you source, launch, and scale your product line with over 250 trusted European suppliers. So whether you’re looking to request products from our private label catalog of over 1,500 items or develop custom products from scratch, Wonnda has everything you need to get started. Best of all, it’s free to start today!

Set up your account in less than 3 minutes and begin your journey with Wonnda. Unlock endless possibilities for your business, bring new products to market and streamline your sourcing process from idea to launch on one single platform.

About the author
Martin Ditzel
Martin Ditzel is the co-founder of Wonnda and was born in Düsseldorf. He holds a BSc in General Management from EBS Universität and an MSc in Business Information from Rotterdam School of Management. He's a tech and business expert who's passionate about using technology to make a positive impact.
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