Material handling industry can be fairly complex to someone new to the industry. It is wide ranging, with lots of different terms and things to get a hand of. That is why it can be a struggle for purchasing managers, those who work on the finance side more than the factory side, to buy things such as forklifts or pallet trucks for their business. After all, if you know little or nothing about the item, how can you tell what exactly to buy? In this article we will be giving tips for those making a purchase decision about something they know nothing of.
Get the Right Information for the Purchase Decision
Before you go about shopping for the item, it is crucial that you collect the right information for what you are buying. What is it for? Where can I get it? What’s the usual price? It is important to understand what you are buying. Getting the right information can be done in a number of ways. Ask the relevant persons at your organisation, do your own research on the internet, find details of any similar purchases which have been made in the past. Make sure you are in the know so you can get the best deal on the item.
Identify your Need
Once you have all the right information, you need to analyse and collate it into a well-defined objective. It will be easy to find out what the item you are buying actually does, but you will need to work with management and others in your organisation to identify exactly what you need it for. Is it a solution to a problem? Is it part of ongoing expansion? You need to get all this information before making the final purchase decision. You can then give the supplier a well defined need which they can adhere to. For example, it may be ‘we need a forklift capable of working in the x industry able to carry x tons in the price range of £x-£x’.
Ask the Supplier Questions
You can do all the research and collating you want, but at the end of the day, you wont be able to become an expert in such short amount of time. You may know roughly what you need, but what if there are 10 different models which match your description? That’s why it’s important to get help from the people who actually deal with the purchases. Make sure you ask the supplier questions. What’s the best value for money? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each model? Doing this can also tell you about the suppliers customer service, whether they are there to help you or just take advantage of you.