Whether you’re starting a new business, looking to grow and expand your capabilities, or simply trying to ensure you always have quality equipment to do the job, choosing the right supplier for your business needs is critically important.

Whatever your equipment needs may be—manufacturing or construction equipment, work vehicles, office furniture, etc.—a good supplier can provide you with exactly what you need, when you need it. The wrong supplier might mean costly delays, poor quality equipment and raw materials, and an inability to meet your growing needs.

Are you evaluating potential suppliers and not quite sure which one to choose yet? Read on for five practical tips to help narrow down your shortlist. If you’re a business owner who needs help selecting the right supplier for your organization, reach out to Team Financial Group. We’re always happy to help.

1. Carefully Consider Your Current and Future Needs

Before you even start to look at suppliers, you need to look carefully at your own company. What are your current equipment needs? And if your business continues to grow, what do you project your needs might be in a few years?

Don’t just look at the specific equipment being purchased. Also consider things like:

The best supplier for your business is likely going to be one with a wide range of equipment offerings that not only suit your needs today, but can continue to partner with you as your business grows.

While, of course, it’s always possible (and sometimes inevitable) that you might need to change to a new supplier, being able to maintain a strong relationship with a single supplier over a long period of time often translates into greater efficiency, cost savings, and productivity versus constantly changing suppliers every few years.

2. Know Your Options

If you’ve been in your industry for decades, you might feel like you have a good handle on what’s out there. But if you’re a small business or startup, you might not know what kinds of suitable suppliers are even available to you.

So, if you’re feeling a little out of your depth with the sourcing process, don’t just sign up with the first supplier you find on Google that seems to have what you need. Some additional ways to find potential suppliers include:

3. Do Your Due Diligence

Even if a supplier seems like they meet all your requirements, you still need to do your research. Is this a reputable and reliable supplier? Can they really deliver everything they promise to deliver?

Remember: research takes time. We know it can be frustrating. But when you choose a supplier, you’re making a huge investment of time and capital that will have significant ramifications for your business. Investing a little extra time upfront for the supplier selection process is more than worth it in the long run.

RELATED: Purchasing Used Equipment? Use This Checklist Before You Buy

4. Consider Your Values

For many organizations, finding the right partner is about more than simply the cost of goods or even the best possible return on investment, absent any other considerations.

For example, if environmental sustainability and local community support are important corporate values, you’ll want to choose suppliers that share these commitments. Consequently, you might choose a supplier that demonstrates a commitment to reducing industrial or packaging waste. Or, you might choose to limit your supply chain to the local area whenever possible to support the local economy and cut down on shipping mileage.

5. Consider Your Budget

Obviously, cost is going to be a major consideration when looking for a supplier. After all, the entire point of investing in equipment is to, eventually, make money. Any company you choose must be able to deliver equipment that fits within your budget and doesn’t overextend your cash flow.

However, many companies become so fixated on the sticker price that they end up making a poor choice. The cheapest option upfront isn’t always the best choice. In fact, it often isn’t even the cheapest once all the “hidden” costs are considered.

If the supplier provides low-quality equipment that requires frequent repair or replacement, for example, the total cost to your business (including both actual expenses and opportunity cost from avoidable delays or shutdowns) can be much higher than working with more expensive suppliers.

Remember, too, that when you work with an honest, reputable, and flexible financing partner like Team Financial Group, you can discover the options that fit both your business needs and budget.

RELATED: The Beginner’s Guide to Commercial Equipment Financing

Team Financial Group: Fast, Flexible Financing For More Than 20 Years

Finding the right supplier for your business is often a complex and difficult process. But securing fast, flexible financing to pay for that equipment doesn’t have to be.

Since 2001, Team Financial Group has provided more than $600 million in financing in almost 10,000 different deals across Michigan and the Midwest. We partner with businesses large and small, in industries as diverse as manufacturing, construction, energy, agriculture, technology, and more.

We’re independently owned and completely dedicated to helping our customers grow their businesses with financial options that are customized to meet their unique business and financial needs.

To discover how we can help you finance your next major equipment purchase, give us a call at (616) 735-2393 or complete this brief online application.

The content provided here is for informational purposes only. For financial advice, please contact our commercial financing experts.

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