Using P-Card Reviews to Keep Tabs on Preferred Suppliers

A binder with the word "Supplier" written on it.

There are a lot of reasons to review data obtained from the use of purchasing cards (also known as P-Cards). Most of those reasons revolve around catching fraud on the part of card users.

But here’s another reason to consider: P-Card data reviews can also help your business keep tabs on your dealings with “preferred suppliers.”

What’s a “Preferred Supplier”?

A preferred supplier is a vendor with whom your company has an official relationship. You’ve communicated to this supplier of goods that you’d rather go to them over some other company. That can be for a few reasons. Quality of the company’s products and services, for sure, is one good reason. But more often than not, a cost incentive is the motivating reason for using a particular supplier over another.

P-Cards and Preferred Suppliers

Preferred suppliers and P-Card usage work together to create clear, streamlined systems of transactions. Such transactions are more finite. They are easier to regulate and easier to track.

Furthermore, these transactions leave a precise digital trail of data that can provide your company with an in-depth view not only of those expenditures, but also, the status of your business relationship with your preferred suppliers.

Fortunately, Card Integrity provides such data reviews, so that your company can easily keep track of preferred supplier deals and ensure that nature of the agreements between your company and your preferred suppliers stays intact.

Valuable Insights for Your Purchasing Department

What specific data on these business relationships can Card Integrity find that your Purchasing Department would love to know? Here are some of the insights that Purchasing would receive from a Card Integrity spend review of your preferred supplier transactions:

  • Validation of discount. A big concern — probably the biggest — of Purchasing would be whether or not your company is receiving your correct discount from a preferred supplier. You are using them for business expenses. Are they, in return, honoring the discount they promised? If the reason you are using a preferred supplier is because they are extending savings to your company, then you’ll want a system that ensures that your company is truly receiving those savings.
  • Use of preferred supplier. Data reports might reveal that, while there’s a preferred supplier for the products being purchased, the P-Card user is going to another vendor for those supplies. This can be a tremendous loss in savings for a business. Whatever the reason — be it deliberate fraud or misuse based in ignorance — a P-Card spend review will reveal if preferred suppliers are being ignored.
  • Correct purchasing of supplies. You might have a deal with a vendor for discounts only on very specific supplies. For example, perhaps you have a contract with an office supply company for a discount— but only for printer ink cartridges. If your employees want to purchase printing paper, they should be going to another preferred supplier, who offers your business a discount on that. But while buying printer ink cartridges, your employee uses the P-Card to also buy paper. Yet again, due to ignorance, negligence, or out-and-out deceit, your P-Card user is not going to the right supplier for the right supplies. That behavior costs you — and your business — money. But such behavior will reveal itself in the data reports that Card Integrity generates.
  • Confirmation of spending limits. Your arrangements with a preferred supplier might include a spending limit. This could manifest in a couple of ways. You might have limits on the supplier as a whole. You might have limits on specific goods from the supplier. Either way, having the ability to create such limits helps your business stay within expense budgets. But if an agreed-upon monetary boundary is being overstepped, your Purchasing Department certainly would want to know about it. Card Integrity keeps an eye on such spending limits, making sure that both the P-Card user and the supplier are toeing those lines. A periodic review of spending limits is also helpful in determining whether or not the budgeted amount for such goods is appropriate.
  • Identifying repeat offenders. When a P-Card holder repeatedly goes to a non-preferred (or “off-contract”) supplier or steps over spending limits, Card Integrity data monitoring picks up on those behavioral patterns and can reveal trends in the cardholder’s purchasing habits. Seeing these trends will allow your management to quickly and easily identify cardholders who are committing misuse, abuse, or fraud on a regular basis.

Discover and Solve Your Problems

By shedding light on the problems listed, Card Integrity’s spend reviews can help your Purchasing Department discover what’s happening within your preferred supplier dealings. Once you know where the issues lie, you can then take steps to actively correct those problems and proactively prevent them from occurring again in the future.

Why Spend More?

Why spend more than you have to? By relying on Card Integrity’s complete and comprehensive data reviews, you can relieve your company of any fear you might have regarding vendor relationships and instead take full advantage of the savings that come from teaming up with preferred suppliers. To learn more about how Card Integrity reviews can save you more money in new ways, visit our website for solutions or contact us via our website

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