The ConnXion Point Blog

Why Tier 2 Suppliers Are The Future of Supplier Diversity

by Feoshia Davis on April 14, 2014

This is the first of a two -part series written by ConnXus CEO Rod Robinson highlighting why targeting Tier 2 Suppliers is the future of Supplier Diversity, and of econimic growth in the U.S.  The Brutal Facts About Minority- and Women-Owned small businesses Despite numbering over 50% of all U.S. firms, minority and female businesses represent only 6% to total annual revenue.  Since 99.9% of all U.S. firms fall within the definition of small business, diverse firms also represent more than 50% of the small business population. Here are a few more interesting facts about small and diverse businesses: Over 50% of the working population (~120 million) is employed by a small business Small businesses have generated over 65% of the… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Help Diverse Suppliers, Indirect Diversity Spend, Minority Business Certification, Procurement/Purchasing, Supplier Diversity, Supplier Diversity Program, Tier II Diversity Spend, Uncategorized

Video: The ConnXus Supplier Diversity Mission

by Feoshia Davis on March 26, 2014

Supplier Diversity Programs aren’t simple, but we’re working to make them easier to manage, access and participate in. At ConnXus, we believe that Supplier Diversity Programs can grow woman- and minority-owned small businesses, while making corporations more globally competitive. We’ve created a new 2-minute video with Cincinnati-based Spotted Yeti Media that shows you how ConnXus helps buyers and diverse suppliers find each other and do business together. Take a look!

Posted in: Uncategorized

Photos: ConnXus at the Charlotte (NC) Minority Economic Development Initiative Meeting

by Feoshia Davis on March 12, 2014

ConnXus founder Rod Robinson was invited to give the Keynote speech this week at the Charlotte Minority Economic Development Initiative meeting in North Carolina. He spoke on Understanding the Changing Face of Technology in the Supply Chain. The event was sponsored by Novant Health and American Product Distributors. The event was held at the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, Belk Action Center on March 11, and a great time! Here are a few pictures from our day.  

Posted in: About

7 Tax Time Tips for Small Business Owners

by Feoshia Davis on March 5, 2014

For you procrastinating types, we’ve gathered 7 great tax tips small business owners should remember while preparing to file taxes. 1. Take advantage of Affordable Care Act Tax Credits These tax credits will allow small businesses to cover up to 35 percent of the health care premiums a small business pays to cover its workers. In 2014, the tax credit will increase to 50 percent. From SBA Small Business Tax Tips 2. Claim employee expenses Don’t forget employee expenses. The reimbursements you provide your own employees are also deductible, Raanan said. That is especially true for expenses related to work such as gas, meals, hotel accommodations, tips, transportation and even baggage fees. To claim such a deduction, a business needs… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Financing & Capital, Help Diverse Suppliers, Supplier Diversity, Tips for Small Businesses, Tips for Start-Up Businesses, Tips for Supplier Diversity Managers, Tips for Veteran-Owned Businesses, Uncategorized

ConnXus Supplier Showcase Webinar program starts in February

by Feoshia Davis on February 19, 2014

There’s a new channel for ConnXus suppliers looking to market their businesses to the ConnXus Community of buyers. Starting this month, ConnXus is hosting a series of Supplier Showcase Webinars. Webinars will be hosted on the ConnXus website twice a month. They’ll last 40 minutes. The supplier will have 30 minutes to present the company, followed by 10 minutes for Q&A. Other Supplier Showcase Webinars details: For A Limited Time, this opportunity is available to all suppliers subscribing to ConnXus Plus at $49 per year The first webinar will be held on February 26, 2014. A calendar of scheduled webinar dates will be made available for supplier sign-up on a first come basis Once initially completed, the schedule will be… read more »

Posted in: About, ConnXus member news, ConnXus Membership Benefits, Marketing & Sellling

Video Tutorials: TierTracker for Prime Suppliers

by Feoshia Davis on February 13, 2014

We’ve just uploaded two new tutorial videos to the ConnXus YouTube channel for users of our TierTracker™ tool. You can subscribe to our YouTube channel to get updates when when add new videos and tutorials. First up is TierTracker™ for Primes: Reporting Diverse Spend, a tutorial video for reporting your diverse spend data while using out tool. Next is TierTracker™ for Primes: Managing Direct Spend Vendors is a tutorial video for managing your direct spend vendors. If you have any questions regarding the information covered, feel free to contact us at

Posted in: About, ConnXus Membership Benefits

Can you get a business loan with bad credit?

by Feoshia Davis on February 8, 2014

The best business idea can fail to launch without the financing to get it moving. As an entrepreneur, your credit score could impact your small business financing options. However, there are a variety of places to seek business loans even if you don’t have a perfect credit score. Your Credit Score and Credit Report Today, your credit score is one of the biggest factors a traditional bank uses to decide whether to offer you a business loan. It determines your credit riskiness. In essence, it determines how likely you are to repay a loan based on your past use of credit. The higher the score, the less risk you’re perceived to be. Your credit report is a detailed history of… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Financing & Capital, Help Diverse Suppliers, Small business finance

7 Cyber Security Tips for Small Businesses

by Feoshia Davis on February 6, 2014

Millions of Target and Neiman Marcus customers were left vulnerable to fraud after hackers accessed customer credit card information. This got us thinking: should small business owners be worried about the security of their own data? The answer is yes. Even though hackers typically are looking for the information jackpot that a large corporation like Target provides, you should still take steps to protect yourself and your customers. In fact, Symantic’s Internet Security Threat Report found that companies with 250 or less comprised 31 percent of targeted cyber attacks in 2012. That’s up from just 18 percent in 2011. Here are a few basic steps you can take to better secure your business information. 1. Install anti-virus and spyware protection…. read more »

Posted in: Small business IT, Small business legal, Uncategorized

Get More Done: 7 Small Business Productivity Apps

by Feoshia Davis on January 21, 2014

These productivity apps help you save time, make you more efficient, and even block distracting websites while you get work done. The things that make it easier for you to do business — email, smart phones, tablets and social media — can also zap time from your workday if you don’t take control. Take a look at these seven small business productivity apps, try them out, and find what works best for you! Doodle: Easy meeting scheduling. No more back and forth group emails! Dropbox: A cloud-based hard-drive. With Dropbox you can store documents that can be accessed on any computer, tablet or smart phone. You can also easily share documents with colleagues and clients. Pocket: Let’s you save and… read more »

Posted in: Marketing & Sellling, Small business finance, Small business HR, Small business IT, Small business legal, Supplier Diversity, Tips for Minority-Owned Businesses, Tips for Procurement/Purchasing Managers, Tips for Small Businesses, Tips for Supplier Diversity Managers, Tips for Veteran-Owned Businesses, Tips for Women-Owned Businesses

Fastest growing U.S. industries, jobs and job-creating states in 2014

by Feoshia Davis on January 15, 2014

The World Bank predicts solid economic growth across the globe, with the U.S. leading the way among developed countries. Which U.S. industries are looking to benefit most? Keep reading to find out. There are several ways to examine what industries and businesses are poised for a banner 2014. Fastest Growing Industries Let’s take a look at this list of fastest-growing U.S. Industries from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Top 10 are: Home Health Care Services Individual and Family Services Outpatient, laboratory and other ambulatory care services Management, Scientific and technical consulting services Computer Systems design and related services Cement and Concrete product manufacturing Office administrative services Offices of health practitioners Veneer, plywood, and engineered wood product manufacturing Facilities support… read more »

Posted in: Resources, Supplier Diversity, Tips for Minority-Owned Businesses, Tips for Small Businesses, Tips for Start-Up Businesses, Tips for Supplier Diversity Managers, Tips for Veteran-Owned Businesses, Tips for Women-Owned Businesses, Uncategorized

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Rod Robinson

The ConnXion Point is the blog for, an online service connecting small, minority- and woman-owned businesses with companies seeking to hire diverse suppliers.

I'm Rod Robinson, founder and chief connector of I've spent 15 years in the procurement business as a minority business owner, company procurement officer and industry consultant.

The ConnXion Point will focus on issues, events and news about procurement and supplier diversity. So, whether you're purchasing or selling, we'll have information you can use. We also hope to facilitate a healthy, respectful exchange of viewpoints on issues surrounding supplier diversity and procurement.

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