In June 2015 NLOWE launched a brand-new initiative, Supplier Diversity NL, with the intention of connecting suppliers, specifically woman-owned businesses, with big buyers. To make this connection as easy a process as possible, we launched the website www.supplierdiversitynl.com. The site is full of helpful resources:
- information on the concept of supplier diversity
- a guide to the supply chain
- updates on natural resource projects in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador
- profiles of local women entrepreneurs who use supplier diversity as part of their growth strategies
An additional feature of the website is an invaluable resource for women entrepreneurs who want to do business with big corporations: the vendor database. Supplier Diversity NL offers women business owners the opportunity to pitch themselves as suppliers simply by registering in the vendor database . . . free of charge!
The database operates from two sides. We have suppliers (woman-owned businesses) that populate their profiles with keywords and information on one side. On the other side, buyers (such as natural resource project operators, corporations, and big businesses interested in working with other businesses) can search for suppliers to outfit their business needs.
Registering in the database is easy and, as we said, free. Once you go to the Supplier Diversity NL website, click on the “Register as a Supplier” link in the top right-hand corner. You will then be prompted to register now to “be an invaluable supplier.” The remaining steps require you to fill in basic information such as your name, email address, username, and password.
Once you have created your account, it is important to “Register Your Company” by populating your profile with as much detailed information as you can. Here are some tips for making your profile stand out in the Supplier Diversity NL vendor database:
- Use as many detailed and specific keywords in your profile as possible. The database search function works by searching words, partial words, and keywords. For example, if you are a Communications Consultant specializing in creating videos, you can use keywords relevant to that line of business, including “videography,” “filmography,” “videos,” and “digital marketing.”
- Include your social media sites as additional promotion. When filling in your profile, you are given the opportunity to include your Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, WordPress and/or LinkedIn URLs. Once you have created your usernames and links, the appropriate logos will show up on your profile when buyers search for you. Including your social media channels will give the buyers additional resources to learn more about your business.
- Create a concise business description. When buyers search for keywords or specific businesses and your business fits the search, they are taken to a preview screen that shows your name, business name, and business description. It is of the utmost importance that your business description is succinct, clear, and concise and that it accurately portrays exactly what your business has to offer.