Why an Open Market Distributor is Vital to Supply Chain Strategy
The Rise of the Open Market
In the wake of fast-paced technological advancements, the open market has become a vital link in the global supply chain for when demand exceeds supply.
In the past, as companies searched for alternatives to their traditional direct distribution channels to find constrained parts, distributors who were deemed ‘middlemen’ or ‘brokers’ emerged. The market quickly became saturated with brokers, many of whom earned a negative reputation within the industry for inflated pricing, poor service and/or substandard product. The result has been skepticism and hesitation among manufacturers on the safety of dealing with non-direct partners.
Today’s Strategic Distributor
Enter the open market distributors (also knowns as independent distributors) who actively distinguish themselves from brokers and franchise distributors in the electronic component sourcing business. By redefining values and offering manufacturers quality assurance from the get-go, open market distributors work hard to differentiate themselves from the negative reputation of brokers. They maintain a code of conduct with standards to provide quality service. In addition, they emphasize legitimate part delivery with full transparency in every customer transaction.
What Customers Should Look for in an Open Market Distributor:
“Supply, supply, supply” is vital to protect companies from global shocks. Raw material shortages, geopolitical tension/conflict and natural disasters are just a few disruptions that can hinder the global supply chain. To avoid complete disruption, a distributor with multiple global sites in key locations can quickly utilize its reach to meet its customers demand and can adapt to any local or global shifts in the market.
A global presence also means 24/7 customer support. Convenient and efficient communication between a customer and the sourcing distributor is vital to a healthy business ecosystem. Multiple global trading hubs and local resources provide a personalized service and attention to detail that meets sourcing and delivery needs of any customer anywhere.
Quality should be a given when it comes to electronic part sourcing. While a broker may be able to find the parts a company needs, they often lack the comprehensive quality inspection equipment, processes and discrepancy checks that protect customers against sub-standard product. A distributor’s comprehensive quality program exceeds industry best practices when it has the appropriate certifications and an active membership in some of the industry’s quality organizations. A leading open market distributor will extend an open invitation for customers to tour their facilities, conduct audits and review testing procedures.
The people behind the business are just as important as the business itself. Building a team of employees who are experts in navigating the industry is a massive benefit to staying ahead of the curve in sourcing, inspecting and delivering parts. A businesses’ strong foundation can lead to a successful legacy, which is why the attitude and resilience of a distributor’s workforce is so important in the relationship with the customer.
Market intelligence is collected through a distributor’s keen eye for reading global market trends and a strong network of vendors, partners and customers. Anyone can collect information, but the differentiator is how strong the intelligence is and the quality of the delivery.
The more extensive the global reach, aka the stronger the distributor’s network is beyond just local connections, the more up to date all parties become on current and potential market happenings. How that information is relayed also factors in building and maintaining solid business relationships. Timely delivery of market intelligence through a phone call, in-person meeting, or email can make or break a transaction in the sourcing industry.
The Fusion Worldwide Advantage
In its 20 years of business as a respected open-market distributor, Fusion Worldwide has developed key initiatives that embody its company values to build trust with customers and vendors. It is recognized as a distinguished global electronic component sourcing distributor and intends to continue growing it’s worldwide network.