I have had a number of very interesting meetings with local management of international hotel chains over the last month. We quickly get to the nuts and bolts of a conundrum they face in being expected/instructed to purchase their goods from national or international supply firms.
Conceptually, broad based/big box suppliers are supposed to have everything for all your needs and at a great price. The problem arises when they don’t or can’t have the customer service to do anything about it. End result…the customer doesn’t get what they need and have little to no recourse, because no one locally has any clout.
The flip side to this is sourcing locally, which is supposed to provide better, quicker service but may not have quite the scope of product or as low of a price. The problem here is when the local source does not have a “solve the problem, figure out the details later” mentality to make all purchasing from their side seamless. There may be better access to recourse, but the higher cost of goods makes having any hiccups all that less bearable.
The solution here is to find the supplier who has that track record of actually caring enough about the customer to have a history of truly putting them first. Whether that company is local or international, it will be the one that factually will help your business be its best. The cost of poor service and support is more than whatever is on your invoice.
solve the problem, figure out the details later