Manual systems mean IT buyers aren’t getting the discounts they’re entitled to

A survey from technology services provider Probrand has revealed IT buyers are missing out on significant price discounts because the right tools aren’t in place for distributors and vendors to effectively manage and communicate deals through the supply chain. 

Probrand believes, without resolution, this will continue to erode credibility of the channel as end users look to the likes of Amazon for higher perceived value.

The research has found that, of the thousands of ‘special bids’ raised every day, less than 1% of vendors said they knew with concrete certainty that these discounts were being communicated to end users by resellers, with many still relying on manual processes – including emails, phone calls and web forms.

Indeed, some vendors voiced their concerns, revealing they believe no special bids get communicated through the channel – it all goes to resellers and distributors leveraging margin – and that many end users don’t even realise special bids exist.

Ian Nethercot, Supply Chain Director at Probrand, said; “It is widely recognised that vendors struggle with resource to manage and authorise special bid discounts because of many manual processes that exist within their systems. 

“Special bids, pre-approved and protected discounts are raised to move lines through the supply chain more quickly by offering extra value to end user buyers.    

“However, vendors don’t have digital tools or resource to monitor use of these discounts end-to-end. What we have a ‘leaky’ supply chain with manual intervention.

“Frustratingly, this means vendors do not have visibility to police if these discounts are getting to end users, which is open to abuse, and end users often aren’t receiving the extra value they demand.

“This is poor for our industry at a time when the channel is under pressure from pop-up etailers and shop-in shops with the likes of Amazon. We need to look at new ways of working, to collaborate and innovate in order to blot the leak and give customers what they want.”

Probrand surveyed 61 IT vendors in the UK.

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