Your China business services provider should provide you with a way to gain control over your production in China as well as control over the quality of information you receive and then act on it.
Having your own people on the ground is by far one of the most effective ways to achieve these goals.
Being able to speak on the phone with someone you trust and you know is there to represent your own interest is already a lot.
But on top of that having a team of people that you not only trust their integrity but their skills and expertise allows you to trust the information you receive from them and gives you the comfort to act on that information.
When you receive clear and real-time information allows you to make decisions faster, better and come up with and action plan that will take advantage of that new intelligence you just received.
You can then communicate that action plan to your team in China and they will execute it according to your instructions not only because they can, but also because they know you and your organization and understand the meaning of what you ask in the context of your industry, organization, and history with your vendors.
However sometimes having a full-time team does not make sense financially.
If your business is seasonal and during some months of the year you do not run production in China, then keeping a full-time team during those months will be very expensive.
If you don’t have enough resources in your head office to control your full-time team in China all year long, then employing more people in your head office just for the purpose of setting up and office in China can increase your cost to a level that makes the whole thing not economic.
Some companies want to play it safe at the beginning. Manufacturing in China is a whole different ball game than manufacturing domestically. There are enough challenges to overcome in the beginning even without having to go through the hardship of setting up a new company and a new team.
Even large corporations that have offices in China for many years, run into a need to deliver projects that are not a part of the scope their Chinese offices are there to manage.
It doesn’t make sense to hire a whole team just for short term projects.
In cases such as described above, it makes sense to hire China business services office.
A China business services office is made of project management teams that will help you translate your needs and instructions to actions that will deliver the results you need. Just as if you had your own team in China.
Choosing a China business services office (or a CBS) is as important as hiring key people in your organization.
The same things that matter when you hire your middle and top management are equally important when you decide which to hire.
The process of choosing a CBS is similar to the process of hiring a key manager.
The CBS management and the people in the CBS that are responsible for your project must be reliable, trustworthy and highly ethical.
The next most important thing about choosing a CBS is to make sure communication with the people that work with you is easy and clear.
You want to make sure that you have no problem understanding the messages you get from your counterparts in the CBS and that they don’t have difficulties understanding you.
Remember that most of the communication between you will be done via email, phone and chat apps.
In most cases you will have very few hours during the day to communicate as your business hours and their business hours are very different.
Coming up next on your checklist should be how familiar they are with China in general and with the Chinese business environment. How well they can operate in China and how well they know the Chinese business culture.
Having the above skills and traits is not enough. But it is an entry threshold for any candidate who wishes to offer you their China business services.
Managing projects is a lot about managing people. Unlike an in-house team a project management team needs to be able to motivate people they do not manage, and many times, don’t work within the same organization to act in accordance to your interests.
The people we are talking about are often people in your supplier’s organization and their interest may be different or even conflicting to yours.
Therefore the team that works with you in the CBS must have very good people skills. They should understand the cultural nuances in China and what is the dynamics in big and small Chinese organizations.
And last but not least, the CBS team must have all the hard skills required to execute the project.
They must have the project management and all the technical skill and knowledge needed to execute the project.
If you want to know more about how a CBS can increase your efficiency and reduce your cost in a very short time, contact us.
We would love to talk to you about your project and how you can improve your bottom line results.
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