Is Hiring a China Product Sourcing Agent Necessary?
The search for a good product starts with the search for a good factory. A good factory is defined by how it handles certain elements of the manufacturing process, like service, ethics, product, machinery maintenance, etc. But perhaps most importantly, a good factory has great communication. With good communication, you won’t be surprised by delays or have to fight with the factory to take responsibility for their own mistakes.
The sourcing process is not simple; it has many risks and challenges involved that can be difficult for the inexperienced to meet. For most newcomers, the sourcing process is nothing more than researching factories online. Sadly, remote verification is not enough to really determine if a factory is a good fit for your business, or for your organization to trust them with your product.
It is important to manage these risks presented by the sourcing process; it should be the primary concern for any organization attempting to work with manufacturers in China. Without a good risk management process, your organization will be exposed to common tricks of the trade. For example, some manufacturers will advertise themselves as larger and more capable than they are, others conceal their limited technical or financial capabilities, and of course, the language gap is a constant struggle to mitigate.
The secret to a good risk management process is a strong qualifying process. Although there are many good and ethical manufacturers in China, as a practice, your organization cannot simply take factories, with whom you haven’t worked before, at their word. Their claims must be verified to ensure your chances of success are as high as possible, either by you or your representative. That is the best way to handle product sourcing in China and guarantee that the sourcing process is a success.
The China product Sourcing Formula:
A simple Yet Effective Formula Used by Sourcing Agents in China
The secret to a successful sourcing process requires two things:
The rationale behind this process is simple and effective. It requires designing a filter to identify nonviable vendors.
A successful filter will naturally reduce the costs and time spent in visiting manufacturers by implementing this step at the beginning of the process.
Your filter will operate in two stages that will ultimately leave you with a short list of viable factories which will limit the time and costs spent visiting manufacturers.
Stage one utilizes remote inspections, i.e. email, phone, online queries, word of mouth, etc. to reduce your list of potential vendors.
Stage two calls for in-person inspections of factory facilities so that you can get a real understanding of the vendor’s operational procedures.
This stage can require specific know-how and may be best carried out by hiring China product sourcing agents.
Profile Potential Vendors
The “Perfect Vendor” profile design should include:
Build your Candidate List
Once you have a vendor profile and know what you’re looking for in a manufacturer it is time to begin assembling a vendor candidate list
Start by collecting names using the full power of the digital world, databases, references, search engines, b2b networks, etc. Disqualify those who don’t fit your profile.
The number of companies that populate your initial list will depend on the nature of your industry. Generally speaking, the more factories you start the process with, the more options you have to leverage during future negotiations. You want to avoid the pitfall of settling for a nonviable factory because you lack choices.
If finding enough candidates proves to be too difficult, consider hiring a sourcing agent in China through our Factory Sourcing service. We are currently offering it at a promotional price that will save your organization time and money.
Initial Supplier Internet Research
After you have completed your list of potential candidates, it’s time to start filtering out the nonviable factories from the viable ones
The best way to do this is to conduct a simple internet search using public domain information. You should be able to quickly gather this information and determine if the manufacturer is worth contacting. This search should render information like date of incorporation, geographic location, product range, and relative market experience.
Keep in mind that certain information may only be available in Chinese. This is not an issue for every company, but if it’s an issue for yours, consider using our Factory Internet Search service, starting from USD $400.00.
Manufacturer study opening Email and Form
Now that your list has been vetted a bit more, it’s time to initiate first contact with all potential vendors
Your goal should be to introduce your organization and gain a bit more in depth information about the vendors.
The recommended method is to send a self-explanatory form to all potential factories accompanied by an introductory letter. The introduction letter is important because filling out the form requires the vendor to commit times and resources, and they may not be willing to do so for an unknown company.
The form itself should request easy to provide information that is not available on the internet. For example, you can request they provide the total area of their manufacturing facility, milestones in their company history, or a bit more details about the products they sell in each market.
Can you fit their cost into your margin strategy?
The price of your goods is indubitably important
Some may even argue that it is the true bottom line. Normally, the manufacturing price range would be the first element you examine when picking a good factory. But a real understanding of the actual price you will be getting eventually at this early stage is notoriously difficult; there are easier and equally essential elements that should be addressed first.
If you’ve been following our China product sourcing procedure correctly, then it is finally time to start worrying about the price. Start by requesting estimates from potential factories by asking them to quote production costs for product specifications already in the public domain.
Your final filtering step before actually visiting the factories themselves is to hold a phone interview
This will be the first time you actually communicate with the factory management, person to person.
This step is surprisingly affordable and easy to accomplish thanks to the revolution in digital communications services like WhatsApp and WeChat. Making long distance phone calls have never been cheaper.
The phone interview is meant to help you cover topics in more depth and address any questions raised by the form. Most importantly, however, it is your first opportunity to get a sense of the people you will potentially be working with.
Remember that while you are talking to manufacturers and attempting to evaluate them, they are evaluating you in turn. Your goal after assessing them for quality should be to upsell your company and convince them it is in their interest to add your business to their customer list by the end of the interview.
Factory Visit / Audit
After your phone interviews, your list should be at its final stage. It should have a maximum of ten viable factories that you plan on visiting and inspecting in person.
Visiting factories can be a tiring experience, both mentally and financially. You will end up visiting a factory just to realize that it doesn’t remotely qualify as a valid manufacturer your company can work with. That’s ok, that’s why you visit factories in the first place.
You can minimize the financial costs and some of the mental stress that comes from visiting factories by utilizing our Factory Audit service. The service is designed to quickly and thoroughly evaluate a vendor’s entire operation, including the hardware and management system, to provide your business with a useable manufacturer assessment. This service is offered at a highly competitive price.
Contact us now for a free consultation with no commitment from your side.
CSO Projement is
A service provider helping non-Chinese companies work directly with Chinese factories.
Our customers are tech-based SME’s for whom price and quality are equally important and to whom protecting their reputation is a top priority.
Our customers are companies that cannot afford paying commissions or third-party margins on top of the net factory price. They are companies with complex products and complex supply chain.
Our clients understand that they must work directly with their manufacturers for improved communication and fast decision making.
They are companies for whom quality and cost are important uncompromising concerns, and want to be involved in the order follow up process, but cannot afford to let it consume too much of their time.
How do I know if this service is for me?
This service is designed for non-Chinese companies who are currently manufacturing or planning to manufacture their product in China
It’s designed to help companies searching for manufacturers that can produce high-quality products at a competitive price.
We understand that time is money, and our customers don’t have time for delays. This is why we designed this service to appeal to SME’s that have very little presence in China. Our professional and experienced team has extensive local knowledge concerning operating in China that helps companies navigate the vendor approval procedure, including a factory audit.
We planned this service while keeping in mind that production in China is a complicated project that can expose our customers to big risks. This package minimizes those risks while remaining affordable.
Larger organizations with their own team in China can still benefit from hiring a sourcing agent in China. Especially if the team is dedicated to non-operational tasks like sales and marketing.
Our service process is straight forward and easy
How It Works
If You Are Interested In The Factory Online Research Or The Factory Email And Phone Interview Services, We Will Follow This Process:
If You Are Interested In The Onsite Independent Audit Or In The Customer Audit Support Services, We Follow This Process:
choose the service best suited for your needs
|Factory Online Research||Factory Email & Phone Interview||Factory Sourcing||Onsite Independent Audit||Customer Audit Support|
|Number Of Factories||1 -5||1 -5||3 -5||1 -5||1 -5|
|Price (USD)||$400||$600||$1000||Get Free Quote||Get Free Quote|
|Chinese Government Data Base Check|
|Factory Quotations for your products|
|Sourcing according to your specific manufacturer profile|
|Our Independent Onsite Audit||Per Your Request|
|Visit Coordination and assistance|