Once we’ve identified some promising suppliers, we conduct site visits. This is where it’s important to know what you’re looking for, as most people can put on a good show. But seeing how their factory is set up reveals a lot. Things we look for include:
· Inward goods – how to they count, store, and quality check, etc., tells us a lot about their systems. For example, do they use a ‘first in, first out’ approach’? Is there risk to damage to their supplies?
· Processing – we look at how efficient they are with their processing and how much waste it might create. We watch how they handle goods when moving from one process to the next to ensure how they will care for your product and their attention to detail.
· Testing – We investigate whether they have the expertise to test in-house or whether products will need to be sent away to a third-party testing lab.
Continued in our next post ‘Step 3 – Initial supplier visits – part 2
Make sure you read our previous posts for essential information regarding manufacturing in China.