"The Supplier Diversity Program is a vital internal advocate for emerging and existing diverse suppliers."
StarSource Management Services has worked with GM in business process management and service delivery of laundry and uniform services since 1997. This African American minority-owned venture with Aramark Uniform Services utilizes technology and defined business process to create a more efficient uniform service for GM's Vehicle Operations, Powertrain, MFD and CCA (SPO) divisions. The results have been an impressive $9 million in cost savings, and service quality improvements.
To learn a little more about StarSource and its experience working with our Supplier Diversity Program, we asked them to answer a few questions in their own words.
Q :How long have you been in the Supplier Diversity Program?
A: StarSource has been a participant in the Supplier Diversity Program since its founding in 1997. Our first purchase order was awarded by General Motors.
Q: What has the GM diversity program given your business?
A: Two words: access and advocacy. Selling to corporations is a complex process for any supplier, and it becomes nearly insurmountable for small, emerging, diverse vendors. GM's program outreach, trade show participation, and seminars on doing business with GM provides access. The Supplier Diversity Program is a vital internal advocate for emerging and existing diverse suppliers. The program helps to ensure that the voices of the diverse suppliers are heard in GM's business planning and discussions.
Q: What has been your overall experience as part of this program?
A: Our experience has been very good; the staff has always been attentive and responsive to our needs. We are very satisfied with the program.
Q: What advice do you have for other companies wanting to become a GM supplier?
A: The first piece of advice is for the prospective supplier to recognize that GM will be a tough sell just because of its enormous size. In today's market, the potential supplier probably needs to have a unique service or product to be a direct supplier. Second, the supplier should understand that they may have a better opportunity to pursue the Tier 2 strategy through existing Tier 1 GM current suppliers.
Q: Please describe the GM Supplier Diversity Program for someone who may have never heard of it?
A: General Motors values the importance of its diverse customer base. One example of this recognition is GM's Supplier Diversity Program, which was established to ensure that diverse vendors are identified and encouraged to do business with General Motors and the larger vendors who supply GM.