A Complete Guide to Streamlining Supplier Collaboration for Grocery Retailers


As a grocery retailer, ensuring seamless retailer-vendor collaboration should be one of your top priorities. Despite its importance, many retailers rely on traditional methods to collaborate with vendors.


By forgoing technology and using outdated means, retailers struggle to strengthen retailer-supplier partnership and end up making critical mistakes along the way. Weak collaboration wastes a ton of time, reduces efficiency, increases costs, and impacts business growth in the long run.


If you’ve been struggling to streamline supplier collaboration as a grocery retailer, turn to cutting-edge technology. Today, the large majority of grocery retailers leverage state-of-the-art software solutions to ensure efficient collaboration and data exchange with vendors.


Simplain’s innovative Vendor Portal has emerged as one of the most popular platforms in 2021. Continue reading for a closer look at how the advanced tool can help simplify and streamline supplier collaboration.


Item Management

Simplain’s Vendor Portal is specifically designed for the grocery industry. As its most popular module, Item Management plays a key role in allowing retailers and vendors to quickly, smoothly, and efficiently collaborate on new items, and improve speed to shelf.


The module is highly customizable. It streamlines collaboration and centralizes communication, thereby allowing retailers and vendors to ensure they’re on the same page with regard to critical details.


The module facilitates timely and thorough exchange. This minimizes the risk of error, cuts down on unnecessary costs, and saves a ton of time.


Some of its key features include:


• GDSN Integration

• Vendor or Retailer Initiation

• Multi-Vendor Item Request

• Spreadsheet Upload

• Multi-Item Review and Approval

• Image Upload and Synchronization

• Configurable Item Attributes

• Multi-Step Configurable Workflow

• DSD Zone and DSD Authorization Exceptions

• Audit Log

• Capture of Nutritional, Allergen, and Ingredient Information


Recommended Read: Freson Bros Selects Simplain Vendor Portal


PO Management

Another fundamental module, PO (Purchase Order) Management, plays a critical role in streamlining supplier collaboration. It allows vendors to update the POs with any changes/updates in pick-up/delivery dates and shortages.


Vendors get a comprehensive view of the PO life cycle, and can be held accountable for non-compliance. Not only does this module facilitate seamless communication, but it also protects retailers from potential errors made by vendors.


By relying on traditional PO management methods, retailers fail to pick up on these nuances. This significantly puts their business at risk. Simplain’s innovative Vendor Portal helps eliminate this risk by providing grocery retailers the support they need. Vendors are also able to double down on the details, and reduce the risk of error, which could land them in big trouble.


By using the PO Management module, vendors can also create ASNs (Advance Shipment Notices) to help retailers with their inventory and load planning.


Its features include:

· VMI PO Management

· PO Corrections/Call-Ins

· Item Dimension Verifications

· PO Print

· PO History/PO Visibility


Update: Vendor Portal Now Available as SaaS


Cost Management


When it comes to efficient retailer-vendor collaboration, ensuring seamless cost exchange is imperative. The Vendor Portal’s cutting-edge module, Cost Management, channels vendor cost updates through a controlled workflow and approval process.


Vendors can easily submit routine cost changes for their own approved items either directly into the Vendor Portal UI or via EDI 832. They can also use the Mass Cost Update functionality to update the costs for multiple items in one go.


This module offers the following features:


· Mass Cost Changes

· WHS or DSD Items

· DSD Zone Management

· DSD Zone or Site Level Costs

· Cost Change by Price Group

· Spreadsheet Upload

· Flexible Search and Filter Options


Recommended Read: Simplain Vendor Portal Live on Microsoft Azure Marketplace


While these three modules play a critical role in streamlining vendor-supplier collaboration, they only scratch the surface. Simplain’s Vendor Portal features more advanced modules, including Vendor Intro & Management, DSD Management, Deals & Promotions, Rebates Management, and Invoice Management.


Click here to explore its modules and features in detail. If you’re ready to get started, contact us and we’ll help you reap the benefits of our state-of-the-art software.