Do you explain to customers why you no quote?
Close
Login to Your Account
Results 1 to 19 of 19
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    greensboro,northcarolina
    Posts
    2,436
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    158
    Likes (Received)
    605

    Default Do you explain to customers why you no quote?

    I always wonder whether its a good idea to explain it. Would you rather just have someone say "No Quote" ? Personally I would rather have a vendor explain why they no quote so I understand better what to ask them to quote. If I am just dealing with a customers purchasing department, they probably don't care. If it's someone technical, I'm not sure if its a good idea or not.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Temecula, Ca
    Posts
    3,062
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1342
    Likes (Received)
    3984

    Default

    I would say yes. A little feedback can be helpful.

    Recently, I sent an rfq for material. The place where i'd bought it several times before no bid, so I bought it somewhere else. Come to find, they hired a new salesjerk who didn't understand the spec, so being a lazy sob he just no bid instead of calling, or looking up an old order.
    So, yes. A little explanation and he would have made a $10k sale without even trying.

  3. Likes Bobw, Jashley73, Lastuneste, Joe Miranda liked this post
  4. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Ohio
    Posts
    1,225
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    797
    Likes (Received)
    1226

    Default

    My regular customers have a pretty good grasp of my capabilities. If there’s something questionable I usually get an email with a print and “Hey, can you do this?”

    For my once-in-a-while customers I usually give a vague reason. Too big, too long , etc. Usually the real reason is I don’t want to tie up resources for someone who pays in 100 days when I can do a lot more for good paying customers.

  5. Likes Garwood, Bobw, wheelieking71, Joe Miranda, GM liked this post
  6. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Texas
    Posts
    432
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    125
    Likes (Received)
    146

    Default

    I dont know if I should or not. Or if they care, or not. But I do and explain that I regretfully must no-quote due to xxxxx and appreciate the chance to quote. My main issue is getting steady work and I need them to know I appreciate it and do all I can for them

  7. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    747
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    148
    Likes (Received)
    250

    Default

    If it were a first time customer who looks like they could otherwise be a good customer, I would explain to them, especially if it were something related to tolerance, bad print, etc. that, if changed, would become something you could quote. If it's a long-term customer, you pretty much owe them an answer. I would just be careful about sharing information that could be "leaked" out to a competitor in a manner that would harm you (the vendor). Might need to make sure the info is confidential (usually in an email signature, not that it guarantees anything). On the flip side, just telling someone "nope, can't/won't quote" can leave them a bit frustrated and confused which might affect future activity (i.e. eliminate it). Obviously, this doesn't cover every situation and you always have to use your best judgement.

    The Dude

  8. Likes Jashley73 liked this post
  9. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Washington
    Posts
    5,320
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    209
    Likes (Received)
    1632

    Default

    It depends ...

    Good customer who sends out a lot of RFQ's, but they generally send RFQ's to multiple shops -- no prose, just "No quote".
    Good customer that I have a tighter relationship with -- some prose explaining why I'm not quoting
    Unknown customer -- "These parts are not a good fit for my current capabilities, but thanks for the opportunity."

    Regards.

    Mike

  10. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    4,930
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    3353
    Likes (Received)
    3830

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    If I am just dealing with a customers purchasing department, they probably don't care.
    Ask them, its good reason to call an chat up a customer?

    All purchasing people care; they care about getting their three quotes with the least effort. Having to send out another because you declined is not the least effort. After a few of times they will probably drop you. A shame if the next one would've been the huge perfect job for you. Giving feedback is good communication which is a good thing in business. It may help them only send appropriate stuff and keep you on the list.

  11. Likes camscan, Jashley73, digger doug, AndyF liked this post
  12. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,055
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1144
    Likes (Received)
    683

    Default

    I always give some explanation. The amount of info depends on the customer and their knowledge. I have a few customers that I can tell we can't make something because of x,y,z but if we change it to this we can get it done. Or if it's difficult to explain via email and they need it done and want us to do it(and we want to do it), we'll meet at the shop and run through what needs to stay and what needs to be tweaked to make it happen. Most cases, the issue is solved in 10minutes or less.

  13. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    West Unity, Ohio
    Posts
    25,699
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5996
    Likes (Received)
    8283

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Booze Daily View Post
    Usually the real reason is I don’t want to tie up resources for someone who pays in 100 days when I can do a lot more for good paying customers.

    Why not just tell them that?

    You doo realize that the purching agent likely aint the controller eh?

    I ditched one customer last year b/c the accounting dept was not in NEAR as big'a hurry as Purchasing and Production dept's.

    The in's just didn't match the out's.


    ------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

  14. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    3,051
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7201
    Likes (Received)
    2581

    Default

    It's really frustrating as a customer to get a "regret" or "no quote" response without any explanation.

    Material suppliers are bad about this. I know that their busy, and probably have 100-200 quotes to bang out in a day.

    But, give me something. "Regret, no stock" is better than "no quote" and takes literally no extra time or effort.

    It's also extremely helpful to know if I'm asking for something that's bogus - my spec is wrong, or I'm asking for a stock-dimension that's not standard, etc... Any kind of feedback helps me correct what's wrong on my end, and send some business your way...

    For the machine shop vendor, it could be that the customer is asking for a bogus tolerance, or some weird spec that you don't understand. Again, some communication would likely reveal the problem, and move closer to some more business (for you)...

  15. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Flushing/Flint, Michigan
    Posts
    8,350
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    436
    Likes (Received)
    6874

    Default

    I think a short blurb of why is better than just a no.
    Shows that at least you put some effort in.
    I get no quotes but it seems always with "we don't press this, do not run this grade, do not have dies" etc..
    A plain no quote and I do not know if you do not like me, if it outside your normal work, some tolerance on feature is a problem or the quantity is too small.
    Without some as to why you may well not get quoted on other stuff.
    Bob

  16. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    360
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    129

    Default

    I'm on the buying side. If I get a no-quote without feedback I'll write back or call to request feedback unless I'm going to stop sending you things. I don't always get it, but I'll always ask. I don't tend to shop things around a ton of places because I don't like wasting other people's time, so if I asked you for a quote it's because I thought you might get it. I don't get no-quotes often, but about 25% of the times I've gotten a no-quote with explanation I've been willing to change whatever item they didn't like and ended up awarding them the work.

  17. Likes CarbideBob, Greg White, digger doug liked this post
  18. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    New Jersey
    Posts
    919
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    548
    Likes (Received)
    351

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RJT View Post
    I always wonder whether its a good idea to explain it. Would you rather just have someone say "No Quote" ? Personally I would rather have a vendor explain why they no quote so I understand better what to ask them to quote. If I am just dealing with a customers purchasing department, they probably don't care. If it's someone technical, I'm not sure if its a good idea or not.
    Yes. I give a reason. I rarely "no quote" things but when I do it's because the job may be outside my abilities, my machine capability, or there's no way to achieve the customer's goals.

  19. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Connecticut
    Posts
    1,919
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1487
    Likes (Received)
    2035

    Default

    I always take the time to explain a no quote.

    I also always take the time to explain why in some cases a certain process we don't have in house may be more cost effective, and/or a better fit for a customers project.....And how we can help make that happen.

    In the few instances where I may lost a small job to this, it helps build trust, and a solid long term relationship.

    I feel it pays dividends long term, as the customer knows they can trust we have their best interest in mind...And honest good communication is key there.

  20. Likes SND, TeachMePlease, Jashley73 liked this post
  21. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Country
    CANADA
    State/Province
    British Columbia
    Posts
    2,672
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    2212

    Default

    Hi All:
    I'm in the camp with Alloy Mcgraw and others who operate in a similar way.
    I have won new customers simply because I exerted myself to be helpful even when I had to regretfully NO BID on their first job.
    I have also disappointed fewer customers with promises I couldn't keep, and I have gained some very loyal customers because they know they can come to me for whatever help I can provide.

    I've always seen it as the decent thing to do...sometimes they don't give a shit and reveal themselves eventually as assholes who just want to pick my brain, but these are thankfully very rare and get cut loose from my customer list.
    Most appreciate it, and I have benefited from that in a thousand small ways.

    So yeah, I try to help them in some way even if I'm not going to be paid in cash for it right now.
    I mostly get something worthwhile sooner or later, and it is nice to be well regarded as a useful resource in my community.

    Sometimes it's nothing more than a referral to someone else who has capability I don't have.
    I recently sent a customer to Reliable EDM in Texas because the job was way too big to fit in my work tank so I was going to be fucking around half of forever building plugs and dams and all sorts of shit to do the job on my machine without pissing EDM oil all over the floor.
    I could have gotten away with it and hosed the customer down, but for the price of air freight both ways, they could get the job done for a fraction of what I would have to charge.

    I gain nothing immediate from it, but the customer may or may not remember me when they need something I CAN do for them efficiently and well.
    It cost me 20 seconds of typing to generate that goodwill, and I'm completely confident the referral will not mean Reliable is now going to steal precious work from me forever.
    The customer gets a lead on a possible new avenue to solve his problem, I get some goodwill and it costs me nothing...everybody benefits, which is how I like it.

    So that's my take on it.
    Rant Off.

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining

  22. Likes Pattnmaker, AndyF, Job Shopper TN liked this post
  23. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Pacific NW
    Posts
    5,145
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    8
    Likes (Received)
    850

    Default

    This one got me in trouble.

    Prototyped a tiny electrical stand off, 3/16" hex stainless male 4-40 one end, the other 4-40 female. Corners on the hex had little spurs to bite into traces on their circuit boards. Prototypes were a 100 bucks each until they worked out a few design changes. These were made for a regular customer who sold them to end user.

    My customer sold his business and retired. He referred me to the end user.

    The sweet grandmother type purchasing agent asked me to bid on large quantities. I said no, I didn't have the right machines. She said yes I did, since no other shop had done them correctly. Meanwhile their engineers are sending me lots of T&M parts to prototype. The PA sent a PO for 2,000 month for 2 years at $4.75 per part!!!!! I knew this wasn't going to work out. I did about 4 months worth, delivered and paid promptly.

    About then Ellison in Seattle had a nice demo Swiss on their floor I could have for $110K. My thought was once I got the stand offs on the Swiss I could lower the price into a more reasonable range, plus run other work on it. Somebody beat me to the Swiss by a couple hours.

    We continued bar feeding parts, flipping them to do the other end. About a minuter per part on the gang tooler.

    Then I get the call I'd been fearing. The no longer sweet grandmother is telling me to stop all of their work immediately. Bill then for work in progress and materials. I was a bit pissed so we quickly ran a couple thou more to spite her.

  24. Likes Ox, Bobw, wheelieking71, Joe Miranda liked this post
  25. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    West Unity, Ohio
    Posts
    25,699
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5996
    Likes (Received)
    8283

    Default

    LOL!


    ---------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

  26. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    11,320
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5552
    Likes (Received)
    3459

    Default

    I usually did, but over time my explanations got much shorter. I never got paid to solve design/production problems or bad drawings and there's only so much time in a day so...
    Pretty much entirely stopping to do proto work got rid of a lot of that thankfully, no more wasting hours trying to find odd tools and unicorn materials and crap like that for too little $.
    It's actually been quite a while now since I had to go quote anything, other than a few odd things I didn't really want to do and was too busy to fit in the schedule anyway.

  27. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Pinckney Mi.
    Posts
    2,991
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5745
    Likes (Received)
    876

    Default

    I almost always x plane, then offer to handle in thru farming it, keeps the phone ringing.
    Gw


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •