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Interviewing and qualifying prospective suppliers can be tedious and time consuming. You can make it eas..." />

Making Supplier Qualification Easier

Date: 09/01/2010

Interviewing and qualifying prospective suppliers can be tedious and time consuming. You can make it easier and save time by planning the essential discussions for all supplier meetings. Making a list of questions well ahead of time about the information you want will speed up conversations during the interview. Keep the list for your own use as a reminder about what to ask or prepare a form for the supplier to fill in. You can check off each question that is answered to make sure you get everything.

Members of the American Purchasing Society can download three different forms that will be helpful. Go to the Society’s site at, sign in and then click on Resources on the menu at the left, then click on Form Downloads. Scroll down to Supplier Information and Qualification Form. Give this form to salespeople interested in doing business with your firm along with any Purchasing Welcomes You brochure you have.

You can also download the generic "Welcome" brochure from the same place if you don’t already have one. The brochure gives the supplier the desired terms and conditions that you require or prefer.

Another useful time saving form, Supplier Information and Evaluation Form, is one you can also download for use with existing suppliers. To be considered for continuing business the supplier should fill out the top portion of the form and submit it to the buyer. The buyer should insert the historic information regarding the quality and delivery performance, and compare the data with other suppliers interested in receiving the business.

The number of paper forms have been reduced to a large extent by computerization, but, at least for the time being, there are some that are still useful and preferred for certain applications. Check lists, application forms, and supplier qualification and evaluation forms are those that are best printed on paper. A hard copy can be handed to suppliers and quickly retrieved from the pocket as needed.

While you are looking at the other forms available for downloading from the Society, if you don’t see what you want or would like to make a suggestion about other purchasing related forms, contact the Society at We may be able to help.