In the 21st century, it is common for companies to outsource many of their departments. Outsourcing is fundamental to the evolution (and survival) of many companies, but in the field of purchasing, it is not yet a widespread custom. In fact, there are still companies who are wary of outsourcing the purchasing department or, even in some cases, are not aware of the possibility of only outsourcing the international purchasing process.
This outsourcing process is a great way to optimize the budget, a very useful resource especially for small and medium-sized companies, where investments are usually smaller and wider profit margins are sought.
As purchasing professionals with more than 15 years of experience in this sector, the first thing we want to say is that it’s important to lose the fear of outsourcing purchases. Managing purchases is a complicated task, especially when we make purchases from other countries, and the strategic vision that a professional can provide will always be beneficial for a company.
In addition, although our company has an internal purchasing department, the constant changes in the international market often make professional help necessary to manage imports, especially in certain geographical areas such as the Asian continent.
Deciding to outsource international purchases will allow the creation of a more dynamic and adaptable structure to manage the different scenarios we can encounter. It is important to keep in mind that when we choose a company to manage our international purchasing, we are relying on a professional specialized in a certain area which is undoubtedly a fundamental factor in ensuring the success of the purchasing process.
In this sense, it is worth noting that although most companies that outsource their international purchasing, do so with the aim of reducing costs, outsourcing this department is a clear aspect of improvement within the company, as it is not a substitution for the work of a member of the team but rather to professionalize the process through external assistance.
Thanks to a good sourcing strategy, the outsourcing of international purchases will permit a more efficient process, thanks, in large part, to the advanced power of negotiation available to industrial sourcing companies.
And the advantages do not end here. Specialization and, without a doubt, experience, allow us to manage, and to better deal with potential incidents with imports and prevent them from ending up in a possible crisis, with the cost and business burnout that could entail.
Finally, as specialists in industrial sourcing we want to disprove the idea that an intermediary makes the purchasing process more expensive. Although purchasing agents charge rates for our services (as in any job), the margin of savings that our negotiations bring to the client makes the investment in an intermediary worthwhile.
Savings are probably the biggest advantage of outsourcing international purchases (in fact, 8 out of 10 clients confirm this), although we cannot forget that our experience as a specialized partner brings the client company a series of competitive advantages over their competitors who end up being influenced, by a clear improvement in their sales.