Each year at DIR’s Minneapolis, MN headquarters, we talk to hundreds of diverse-owned suppliers and supplier diversity professionals. This book shares what we’ve learned from frequently asked questions, offers some shortcuts and tips, and establishes one guarantee: the road to a corporate contract agreement is long and winding!
Know your history: There is a Legislation section in the very beginning of this book. Especially if you’re new to Supplier Diversity, it is helpful to understand how this industry was shaped in order to understand how best to pursue opportunities in it.
Ask about the why’s and when’s: Typically, corporations are involved with Supplier Diversity because of compliance (government contracts), customer requirements (2nd tier spend) and/or consumer outreach (people tend to support corporations who support their communities). Asking about a corporation’s motivation to increase their supplier diversity spend is helpful. By understanding a corporation’s motivation and business cycle, suppliers can pace their own research and outreach efforts.
Resources are plentiful: The tools in this book include a section on the U.S. SBA (Small Business Administration) programs and the acceptable definitions of diverse-owned businesses. The Federal/State/Local Government entities are listed in the following section as general resource listings.
Reach out to the right advocates; connect with peers: The Supplier Diversity Contacts section (also known on DIR's product list as "Purchasing People in Major Corporations: An Online Database") contains up-to-date information on over 900 corporate contacts who are, typically, liaisons to procurement departments. (Please note that listings were current as we went to press in December 2014.) They are front-line advocates and storied experts in Supplier Diversity.
More help as you need it: Also included are sections with Industry Resources, Certifying Organizations, both of which are exhaustive lists of other places where the language of supplier diversity is spoken.
You talked. We listened. Order this new resource today for your own use, for department reference, for consulting connections ... it will become a trusted map as you wind through the supplier diversity path to the procurement table!