Right now there is, quite rightly, a lot of focus on supplier relationship management. A wise extension of this – with your key strategic suppliers – is to look at what you can do to be the customer of choice for such trading partners. If there is a shortage of supply now, or in the future, this helps to ensure you have continuity of supply.
This doesn’t mean just increasing your prices, but it does mean developing a long-term dialogue to understand what makes it difficult for your supplier to trade with you – and then work with them to overcome these so you are the easiest partner for them to trade with.
You may be surprised but some of their big issues may be around logistics, goods receipting, demand forecasting or the term of the contract. They may be things you can change at little or no cost to you but de-risk your supply chain massively. What have you got to lose?