Customer-supplier relationships make up the web of today‘s modern economy. Globalization is demanding more and more specilization. No company can succeed without trusting relationships with suppliers.
Nonetheless, it is the suppliers who first feel the pain when the economy weakens. German companies, however, do their best to maintain their viability, their strength. They want their suppliers to succeed along with them. Suppliers are viewed as partners in innovation.
Germany‘s largest global companies stress, therefore, time and again the importance of maintaining partnerships with their suppliers, how they together strive to establish ever higher standards of quality.
One of the largest German manufacturers of medical technology stated recently that a supplier‘s size in terms of revenue is far less important than its technical ability and willingness to work together over a long period of time. They see themselves as partners in product development.
Another German supplier operating worldwide has developed into a major customer in its own right, setting up a complex international network of suppliers, integrating its research and development area with a few selected suppliers. Its motto is: Des einen Lücke, ist des anderen Expertise, loosely translated as: The gap in the one company, is the expertise of the other.