Trek Essay

1A) The role of a buying center is to find the best suppliers and vendors for the organization’s purchases. However, at Trek, buying centers make sure that purchasing managers are partnering with vendors who benefit the company. In addition, buying centers serve the role of confirming purchasing managers of the suppliers that do, in fact, meet the qualifications and standards set by Trek. They are a small team focused on negotiating prices that benefit both Trek and the supplier.

1B) At Trek, purchasing managers are most likely to comprise the buying center in a decision to select a new supplier. Sometimes, in important technical purchases, it will be representatives from research and development, production, and quality control. These individuals are the deciders who have formal/informal power to select or approve when a supplier should receive a contract.

2) When potential suppliers at Trek are being identified, they are evaluated on four criteria- quality, delivery capabilities, price, and environmental impact of their production process. The focus on those four criteria allows the company to compare one supplier to another. Once a business is selected, it is continuously evaluated based on the elements of those four criteria.

3) Trek’s interest in the environmental impact of its business influenced its organizational buying process immensely. When suppliers understand the impact a product has on the environment from start to finish, it draws companies such as Trek closer to finalizing a contract with them. The environmental impact influenced the organizational buying process of Trek because it helped seek opportunity for innovation and profit. For example, Trek bikes are becoming “smarter” by having electrical components that help them become a practical transportation alternative. In addition, Trek bikes are becoming “greener” by reducing the packaging size and weights whenever anything is sent out. By always seeking how to produce products that are “smarter” and “greener”, Trek produces a tremendous amount of profit and saves money for other causes.

4) For a new buy, an example could be a saddle with a new material or a new technology that goes into the frame that damps vibration or gives a better ride. Trek is exposed to greater potential risks in these purchases because they will be done for the first time. An example of a modified rebuy would be a saddle with a little bit different material, however, still sharing components of the older models. The changes in a modified rebuy sometimes enlarge the buying centers to include more people in order to make the right decision. Lastly, a straight rebuy would be a strategic vision for the component down the line where Trek purchases the same component while the volume goes up. For example, the purchasing managers at Trek can place an order for the same saddles without changing any features. These types of purchases are sometimes done without checking users or influencers from the engineering, production, or quality control departments.

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