5 Criteria to Evaluate a Steel Supplier

8 min read

For any business, having the right supplies when needed is essential. This is especially true for manufacturing companies who depend upon having the quality tools and materials they need to produce the best-possible results for their clients.

If you choose the wrong suppliers for your materials, you may have to deal with constant reworks and delays. So how do you choose the right steel supplier for your needs? Here is a list of the top five qualities you should look for when you are choosing steel suppliers for your business needs.

1. ISO Certifications

One way to identify a reliable steel supplier is to check their ISO certification. Companies with ISO certifications have a reliable and proven method to getting their work done, and continually improve upon their production process.

It’s easy to check on ISO certification; a company will either have and display an up-to-date certification, or it will not.

If the company doesn’t display an ISO certification, ask why. Are they unable to meet the improvement standards and documentation standards required for certification? Or has the business just not applied for certification?

Please note that just because a company has an ISO certification does not mean they will offer top-quality goods; instead, it shows that they have well-documented and consistent processes for getting the job done.

2. Reliability

If your suppliers don’t get you the tools and materials you need to meet your production timelines, you will have some very unhappy customers. Avoid unreliable steel suppliers who can not offer you consistent deliveries because the last thing you need when you’re trying to finish and ship off a big order is a delay on your steel.

When you’re looking at suppliers, investigate their past history with previous and current customers. How long did they have to wait for orders to be filled? Did the supplier consistently meet deadlines?

If the steel supplier has short delivery times and can beat or regularly meet their schedule for delivery, you can be confident knowing you will be able to rely on them to fill important orders on time.

3. Processing Equipment

When you’re meeting with potential steel suppliers, always check to make sure that the equipment and tools they use is up to date. This can ensure that you will always receive the best-possible quality steel on a continuous basis, and that they can meet your production tolerances.

4. Low Rejection Rates

Even if a supplier can offer fast delivery and consistent processes, that doesn’t mean they are the best choice. If a steel supplier sells you shoddy materials that you have to reject because they don’t meet your production tolerances, that can be worse than not receiving the steel at all. A fast delivery cycle is negated when you have to reject and re-order materials, so when you are deciding on the best possible steel supplier for your business, avoid those who have a high number of claims against them for materials being rejected upon delivery.

5. Motivated, Dedicated, and Trained Teams of Professionals

Even if the steel supply company is heavily automated, having the right employees in place to handle the job is one of the most important aspects of choosing a supply company. Motivated, properly trained workers who know how to do the job can take the tools they have available and provide you with the best quality product. If you can, check the qualifications of the employees who work for the supplier you are considering. If they have certifications relevant to the materials the steel supplier will produce, they should be competent and knowledgeable to help you.

It can sometimes be difficult to find a supplier with all the necessary qualities but if you take your time and choose wisely you should be able to build a working relationship with a reliable steel supplier.

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