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Vendor Management with Salesforce: All You Need to Know 

Do you ever ask yourself, “How can I maximize efficiency with my vendors?” This is a hallmark question that great leaders in business ask. From a supplier relationship management (SRM) standpoint, Salesforce has all the solutions you need to simplify vendor relationships and ensure that operations run smoothly. 

In the next five years, the vendor management software industry is expected to swell to a staggering 11.5 billion market cap. As businesses continue to evolve and diversify their products and services, the need to utilize a reliable platform that can keep track of data, documents, and supply chain specificities has grown. In this guide, we cover how Salesforce is much more than the world’s leading CRM platform.

Chart displays grocery ecommerce sales through 2026

What Are Salesforce Vendor Management Modules? 

Vendor management is already evolving in transformative ways. Salesforce utilizes a Lightning Bolt solution to drive that evolution further. This Bolt features three key modules that will reinvent the vendor management process for business. 

1. RFP Module

Due to security and transparency issues, Salesforce understands the risks associated with third-party vendors, especially for IT companies. With this module, new vendors can participate in a RFP using a lite onboarding process, which will temporarily forgo supplier compliance vetting so they can participate in the bidding process along with existing vendors. Later these new vendors can be placed in a full-onboarding process. 

In the full on-boarding process, the new vendor’s information can be collected and automatically sent to the business personnel who are involved in the vetting process. Afterward, once an RFP is awarded, the vendor information can be populated into a contract and sent to other departments, such as legal, for review with the click of a button. Everything is automated and transparent on one system that any Salesforce user can view. Additionally, Einstein Analytics lives throughout the tools, so data doesn’t have to be pulled from other sources to be placed into Einstein and the platform is fully mobile-enabled.  

2. Purchase Requisition Module 

Purchase requests can be generated and sent to any management or procurement authority for approval with the click of a button. Salesforce users can create purchase orders and invoices all in the same module and invite vendors to register themselves onto the platform after the vetting process is complete. 

Vendors can upload their own information electronically, which streamlines the onboarding process. They can also view any purchase orders created by the client, which enables them to check the status of P.O.s and see any edits to P.O.s in real-time. This module also enables vendors to submit invoices, check payment status, and initiate early payment for discount terms. 

3. Compliance Module 

The functionalities of this module center around vendor compliance and risk assessment. This module can evaluate both the inherent and residual risk associated with any given vendor based on their information and an analysis of the interaction between the vendor and client. All data and contact information can be stored in one place, making it easier for vendors to keep their data and contact information up to date and relevant. This module features compliance surveys that can be utilized to improve vendor relationship management and rate their performance based on contract terms or engagement. 

Pie chart displays survey results about how Chief Product Officers spend their time

Reshape Your Supplier Relationship Management

High-performing CPOs should only spend about 63% of their time on operations and transactions. By utilizing the modules above, CPOs can spend more time focusing on a strategy to improve procurement processes and supply chain management. Let’s dive into how the modules above can allow you to do that. 

  • Salesforce vendor management is a cloud-based solution. It is optimized and scalable because there is no need for hardware or additional software. 
  • The centralized platform allows for a reduction of overhead costs for business because all the tools you’ll need are available in Salesforce. 
  • End-to-end processes are streamlined with Salesforce vendor management. Doing so increases transaction acceleration and reduces the likelihood of error. 
  • SRM tools increase engagement with vendors, which drives collaboration, trust in the partnership, and user satisfaction. 
  • Procurement desktop restrictions are eliminated due to mobile availability. This allows professionals to engage in the procurement process from anywhere, ensuring that needs are met in a timely fashion. 
  • The Salesforce vendor management platform allows you to connect your vendors with product experts and securely provide them with relevant CRM information. Vendors can track sales assets, product information, and even training and certification courses. Real-time records and the ability to track customer activity and revenue, facilitate collaboration between internal and external sales teams. 
  • Strategic Sourcing is a procurement process that allows your business to find the most efficient supply source for products or services. It facilitates the improvement of supplier decisions by performing pre-analysis and enables you to source your products from that supplier. You can circumvent supplier risk and improve spending with multi-stage Rfx.
  • The platform features a 360-degree view of suppliers. At both ends of the supply chain, every party involved can view interactions, transactions, and documents in real-time, creating ultimate transparency. 

Allow Rainmaker to Improve Your Vendor Relationship Management 

Like any relationship, the one with your vendors should be built on trust. How do you create trust? By being transparent and intentional with your vendors from the initiation of the onboarding process throughout the lifecycle with that vendor. 

The global pandemic has created inefficiencies in the supply chain with many customers citing shortage of products and extended wait times for delivery as their main pain points. By managing vendors in Salesforce, you can combat some of these pain points with an innovative Lightning Bolt solution. 

For two decades, Rainmaker has collaborated with a wide variety of enterprises to deliver Salesforce-based solutions that have transformed their collaborators. We would love to help you. Find out how we can help your business improve its vendor management relationships. 

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