So I recently told you how difficult it was to sign with manufacturers so I would actually have product to sell.
Despite this I am almost to the point where I am going to discontinue our relationship with one of our manufacturers. This company has been nothing but difficult to deal with since day 1.
When we first started I wanted to sign them up as our lead supplier for our “scrubraisers” brand. However we needed a price point that was lower than their standard wholesale pricing. I figured since we would be buying in bulk we may be able to get preferential pricing. I knew for their involvement to be feasible we needed to get our pant cost to $9.00 a pair, which was roughly a 25% discount to what they currently offered me. I spoke on the phone with our account rep and he said he had to check with the higher ups. He gave me a call back and said as long as we were hitting certain minimum order sizes they would work with us.
A few weeks later I emailed in our first order and I received an email back from a name I didn’t recognize stating that my rep had left the company. They then told me that they didn’t offer pricing as low as what I had mentioned in my email. I called in to explain the deal we had agreed to between our companies. At this point I started looking for an email chain, which I didn’t have….in fact I didn’t have anything in writing (lesson learned there). Eventually after many phone conversations, it became my word about a conversation I had on the phone with an account rep that was no longer with the company which didn’t end up being enough (mind you Mer, my partner, had actually visited this company personally, met our account rep, and the CEO). After going back and forth I actually got on the phone with the CEO about all of this and he basically questioned my integrity. Which really pissed me off.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to drop them as a supplier as they were pretty much my only option at the time. They also have a fairly unique product that we have since done fairly well selling.
The problems didn’t stop there. The supplier specializes in “collegiate logo” scrub apparel, has 16 base colors and really only 4 cuts that they sell. Which is VERY minimal compared to the large companies. When adding their scrubs to our site we needed some info from them, such as what colors come in what sizes and what schools do they offer. Turns out that no one in the company has an exhaustive list of either of these things. I asked for this list over 6 months ago and still haven’t received anything that is even close to what we need (I have been promised it many times, most recently I have been told we will get it in February….we will see). It has turned selling these products into a trial and error game.
Unfortunately it doesn’t end there.
A few weeks ago we sold a set of “Army, Black Knights” scrubs and when I sent the order in I was told they had just terminated carrying that product (we weren’t told).
One of our first customers from OCTOBER, just recently reached out to me and said they never received the Stanford scrubs they ordered. I contacted my new account rep and sure enough the package had been returned to them because it was lacking an Apt #….It was returned over 4 Months ago and they failed to contact me so I could alleviate the problem and reach out to my customer to let them know about the issue.
Two weeks ago we had a client order a UGa scrubs and wanted the rush delivered. I called my rep and asked if we could do it (we paid the rush shipping charges etc) he said no problem. 5 Days later I get a call from the client and they have yet to arrive. I called my rep and he found the scrubs sitting in a “ready to ship” pile that they had been in for 5 days. They promised to rush them out that day. 4 days later I get another call from the client, and the scrubs he received didn’t have the logo on them, they were just blank scrubs.
The list goes on. I would guess that 1/2 of the orders I have taken for this company have been mis-managed in some way. This makes us look really bad.
I don’t know where my breaking point is with them, but I think I am close. It is a lot of trouble to sign a manufacturer and then get their scrubs available for sale on scrubadoo.com. Which makes it very difficult for me to cut the ties.
I haven’t done anything yet, but we may be close.