As a manufacturer, we obviously require as much visibility of (larger value) future orders as possible to enable us to plan ahead our staffing levels, stock control, etc etc. We seem to manage this generally with UK orders, but with export it seems impossible.
When progressing quotes (particularly within the Middle East) we get told ‘we only know when the order comes in’. Regular distributors use their price agreements, coming to us saying that they are facing tough competition & seeking extra discount for large quantities and we get the order the same day – even when we were unable to improve terms! (fair enough they want to increase their margins). I would mention that most of the end customers are ministry of health/government institutions they will generally be operating via tenders/official quotes.
Does anyone have any tips as to how I can encourage customers to keep us better in the loop. Note: Most of these companies are working on a non-exclusive basis.
Just to let you know, one of our experts John Reed will come back to you early next week.
Have a good weekend.
Matthew, Open to Export