The Elephant in the Room
"We prevent that from occurring as best as anyone can, because if there is an extraneous ink on a roll, that may be cause for an immediate rejection by a customer," Simon noted. "If a customer rejects a roll, that can be the equivalent of rejecting 80,000 documents or more—you don't want to go down that road."
Datatel Resources even developed an eight-page document that addresses its quality standards; distributors can use the pamphlet as an extra selling tool.
"When [distributors] get to the point where a customer is considering them, they want to make sure that customer notes their dedication to doing a quality job," said Simon. "This document really gets into the details of quality, [identifies] common quality issues and shows how Datatel addresses those issues so the customer feels comfortable that we are really on top of this."
While sophisticated machinery is essential, suppliers can deliver value to distributor partners and their clients in other ways. A reliable partner will go the distance.
"We firmly believe that there's no one out there who will support our distributors as much in the sales process as we will," Simon remarked. And he isn't campaigning on a platform of empty promises.
In fact, when Simon and his team accompany a distributor on a sales appointment, they immediately hand out business cards, which contain their cell phone numbers. "We'll look right at the customer and say, 'Call us any time. We don't care if it's 3:00 a.m.,'" he commented. "If a customer wants to get ahold of a decision-maker at a [large major direct] plant at 3:00 a.m. on a Sunday, we challenge them to be able to do that."
Simon pointed out additional services his company offers. "We will do endless test runs. We will sponsor plant evaluations, where we'll fly in people to review our capabilities and our staff, processes and equipment. We will work with a distributor financially as far as being able to service the order from a billing perspective," he said.