SanMar Corporation Becomes First Better BuyingTM Subscriber to Make its Scorecard Publicly Available

SanMar Corporation, a leading national supplier of wholesale apparel and accessories, has become the first Better Buying™ subscriber to embrace full transparency and accountability by making its Purchasing Practices Index scores publicly available.


The scores are based on anonymous feedback from its suppliers, which are aggregated via Better Buying’s proprietary algorithm, analyzed for trends, and turned into actionable data-driven insights. This 360° feedback nurtures a culture of innovation, helps build a more resilient supply chain, and forges stronger supplier partnerships

SanMar first subscribed to Better BuyingTM in 2019 and has now taken part in two consecutive ratings cycles. The company’s Better BuyingTM Scorecard outlines its overall score for 2021, and in 7 key purchasing practice categories. The results show where the company has improved its performance, stayed the same or declined from previous years in terms of how it is rated by its suppliers, and how it compares against the industry benchmark.

SanMar has also made publicly available its 2021 Company Report, which provides a detailed breakdown of how suppliers rated the company on specific purchasing practices, as well as priorities for improvement. The report also includes anonymized, open-ended comments from suppliers detailing examples of best and poor practices, and suggestions on how the company might improve in each of the 7 categories.

Pat Noonan, SanMar’s Chief Product Officer, comments: “We have agreed to share our Better BuyingTM 2021 Scorecard and Company Report because we believe transparency and leadership are essential to being a great partner to our global vendors. We also believe in strong, fair partnerships with our factories and we want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to help our vendors succeed.”

“Better BuyingTM is a remarkable tool. We particularly like the totally anonymous nature of Better BuyingTM as it makes sure there is no pressure on vendors to be anything other than completely open in their reviews of us. By encouraging other subscribers to the platform, we think we can help drive meaningful change in the way apparel companies work with their vendors beyond just SanMar – moving the needle for the whole industry.”

Better BuyingTM and SanMar have also collaborated on a short video discussing the value the company derives from engaging with Better BuyingTM and improving its supplier relationships, which includes interviews with some of its suppliers.

Siddarth Hirdaramani, Director of the global apparel manufacturer Hirdaramani Group who appears in the video, comments: “We are used to being rated and ranked by our customers. But having the opportunity for our teams to rate and give feedback on our customers’ performance creates an amazing two-way dialogue that motivates our teams and drives us to want to work more with this customer, because we know they want to hear our feedback, and we have a lot to share.”

Describing his experience of using the Better BuyingTM platform to rate his customers, Rajiv Naidu, Managing Director at apparel and garment manufacturer Augustan Corporation, adds: “The platform is great. It’s very straightforward, very easy to use. It’s very anonymous and also gives you an avenue with which to give your detailed responses or ideas and concerns to the customer without risking any loss of business.”

Dr. Marsha Dickson, President and Co-Founder of Better BuyingTM, comments: “We’re delighted that SanMar has taken this step. Amid the growing global concern around purchasing practices, we have seen a number of our subscriber brands include Better BuyingTM in their sustainability strategies, and placing purchasing practices at the heart of their business operations.”

“We believe other brands and retailers might find value in being more open and transparent in relation to the steps they are taking to improve their supplier partnerships and purchasing practices. Better BuyingTM subscribers have always been able to compare their Purchasing Practices Index scores against the industry benchmark, but being able to make those comparisons with their competitors will be a game-changer in accelerating the ‘race to the top’.”

Pat Noonan concludes: “Now that our marketplace is recovering from COVID we’re going to lean on our Better BuyingTM results to help identify and prioritize some of our key improvement initiatives. For example, our results indicated that a balanced vendor scorecard would be helpful to our global partners and that is something we’re working really hard to pull together in the year ahead. We are also sharing the results across all our internal stakeholders. Our product development and sourcing teams are well aware of the results and know which areas are underperforming and need to be targeted for improvement.”

Read SanMar’s Score Card, Company Report, and a Case Study in which Pat Noonan outlines how SanMar leverages Better BuyingTM supplier data to prioritize areas for improvement and improve supplier partnerships.