In Search of a Reliable Customer: What Does a Participant of Commercial Purchasing Need to Know?

17/ 09/ 2018


What features of a commercial customer should a supplier pay attention to before taking part in their purchasing and what are the tools for their instant checking?

Commercial companies, as well as the state-owned companies, constantly need to purchase a wide variety of goods and services to ensure their daily activity or organization of production. Of course, in most cases primarily a customer is interested in a reliable supplier and their own reputation, so they will honestly fulfill the conditions of the agreement. But there is always the risk that a company does not play fairly and can delay the payment or not pay for the purchase at all, etc.

It is worth knowing in advance about how reliable and honest a company with which you potentially can cooperate is. This will at least help save the time you may spend on preparation and participation in the tender, and at most help avoid financial and reputational losses. The YouControl system will help you quickly check a customer. It contains all the information you need to have in order to make a conclusion about a purchasing company. At the webinar, conducted together with the electronic platform SmartTender.biz and focused on life hacks for suppliers, Nataliia Chornohub, a compliance expert of the company YouControl, told how to do this.

Thus the first thing to pay attention to is a legal status of a company. It is unlikely that a bankrupt company or a company in the process of termination will be busy paying to its supplier.

Then you should pay attention to the debt of a company to the tax inspectorate or its own employees. Usually an enterprise settles accounts with the state first, and to ensure its activity it settles accounts with its employees. If this does not happen and a customer has a tax or salary debt of hundreds of thousands or even millions of UAH, it is, mildly speaking, an argument not in their favor.

In fact, only few companies manage to have been working for a long time and not have at least a few court cases. But if there are hundreds of them, and most of them are criminal, the question is worth deeper examining in order to understand how the firm works. Does it fulfill its obligations to its partners, and does it not violate the law systematically? In general, why does it appear in so many cases?

Financial indicators of a company are, in general, its business card for a future supplier. If the assets of a company are significantly smaller than its obligations, where will it take the resource to pay for the goods or services you provide?

Sanctions are another warning call while making a decision: to participate in the bidding or not. If its name appears on Ukrainian (in particular, of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine) or international sanctions lists (for example, of the United States Department of State), there is no doubt that it has committed something illegal. It is worth emphasizing here that cooperation with companies under sanctions also carries consequences for their partners. Therefore, a won tender organized by such a customer can bring more troubles than money.

But perhaps the most important question to be answered by a supplier is as follows: does a real company make a purchase? Is it not fictitious? To answer it you need to pay attention to the director – whether s/he is not massive, that is, whether s/he does not run more than a dozen enterprises. After all, even a real virtuoso manager is not able to run such a number of companies every day. Another sign of fictitiousness is the registration of a company at the address where dozens or hundreds other legal entities are registered, especially if it is an apartment in a residential building. Such a customer can not even be found if they suddenly disappear with your goods and an unpaid invoice.

All this information can be found in the YouControl system in the various tabs of the company card. However now it is not even necessary to study them in detail. The system has a new tool – “Express Analysis of the Counterparty”. It immediately, before a company profile, draws attention to the number of risk factors of cooperation with it, indicates what is wrong with the chosen enterprise. On the contrary, according to the results of this analysis, it may turn out that a company works like a Swiss watch and is worth paying attention to as a potential customer.

Finally, it is necessary to emphasize the importance of analyzing companies comprehensively, and not trusting a customer that seems reliable at first glance. After all, sometimes having created a positive overall impression, a potential partner may turn out to be, for example, a fraudster or a bankrupt.

Thus we wish you successful projects and reliable partners. Check with YouControl!

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