Getting in Front of Problems

Is it true because it's true or because you'd rather not exert serious effort in controlling this factory? A few thoughts about getting in front of problems in China manufacturing.
In China sourcing, a chunk of miscommunication and mass production messes are because of failure to get in front of problems. Suppliers are bashful to admit in advance why something may take a turn for the worse. Buyers won't acknowledge failure and in order to CYA or money, they push issues off onto the supplier. Whatever the reason, being able to recognize potential problems and cut them off at the pass, will save a world of hurt. ...

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Good Buyer Discipline in Importing

Good buyer discipline and habits lead to successful importing.
Success in China sourcing doesn't happen in a vacuum but comes from good discipline. Consistent habits stack on top of each other like building blocks, forming an experienced buyer. Shoot, besides China sourcing, this whole discipline concept works in many walks of life....

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Wire Transfer Payment Terms and China Vendors

Some considerations on standard wire transfer payment terms
Negotiating preferred payment terms with Chinese suppliers is a big concern for buyers. "How much deposit is normal? When to pay the balance? Why won't supplier accept "looser" payment terms? Can't they trust me?" Let's shed some light on this topic....

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5 Important Habits When Working with Overseas Suppliers

5 Good habits when working with overseas suppliers lead to good production. Good mass production is the goal, right?
Importers that gain traction and succeed when dealing with overseas suppliers, tend to develop the right habits. When every order becomes painful and mired with the same problems, a little digging will show that person doesn't consistently apply the right habits. I'm laying out 5 import pieces of discipline that'll help when managing overseas suppliers....

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Supplier Communication: Look For and Give Relevant Detail

Sometimes an offshore project seems like stumbling around in the dark because you and the supplier are talking past each other. Strive for relevant detail.
By focusing on relevant detail  in your supplier communication you avoid time waste, misunderstanding and even incorrect mass production. In offshore manufacturing, nothing is to be taken for granted. Nothing? Nothing. For each phase, consider "what relevant detail needs to be put forward."...

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Repeat Orders Still Require Vigilant Control

Don't take repeat orders for granted but continue a proper system of control.
Repeat orders in China manufacturing still require vigilant control. Casualness from both sides influences the outcome for the negative; the burden of fault being on the supplier's shoulders. Here's some reasons why errors happen in repeat orders and what to look out for. ...

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More Considerations on Importing Promo Products

Considerations for Sourcing Promo Products from Chinese Vendors
The majority of promo product orders are smaller runs (200 pens, 500 ball caps, etc). These are purchased from onshore stock or local factories. China or offshore manufacturing comes into play with extensive customization and increased quantities. Once buyers go offshore, they realize their expectations and demands aren't necessarily upheld or even understood by the vendors. Let's talk the change of mindset that's necessary for sourcing promo products offshore.  ...

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Obstacles in Importing Promotional Products from China

Importing promotional products from China, because of the wide range, has a set of its own unique obstacles.
Importing promotional products is a hot topic for companies in that 20 billion dollar industry. From the end brand to distributor to importer, businesses in the supply chain require customization and cost savings. For Western-based companies starting to buy offshore; here's a picture of some of the initial obstacles you may face. ...

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Sorting Out Mass Production Errors

Mass production errors don't only happen to other people. If the winds of Providence blow your way, how will you handle?
Having to sort out mass production errors is not a place any buyer wants to find themselves. But the cold fact, is that it happens. It's better to be prepared and have some concepts in place on how to handle instead of acting like "it won't happen to me."...

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Responsibility and Mass Production Mistakes

Solving production mistakes in a solution-oriented manner are signs of a solid vendor.
Production mistakes cut a project to the quick. Not only is the actual product now "not right" but there's other aspects to sort out. Handling it all cross-culturally and from abroad makes it all the more touchy....

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Quantity, Quantity Scales and MOQ

Be precise as possible in your communication with your Chinese vendor. Even when it comes to order quantity in your RFQ
Here are some refreshers on your quantity request when sending in inquiries to vendors in China sourcing. Your initial inquiry sets the stage for supplier buyer interaction. The quantity request portion of your inquiry is a vital part of that inquiry. This may not be the most exciting post...come to think of it, none of my posts are that exciting. ...

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Better Time Management Tips in China Sourcing

Your time management is connected to your results. Poor managment, poor results, simple, eh?
Your time management has a bearing on your product quality and order success. In China sourcing, like many things in life, there aren't many disconnected threads taking place in isolation. Most concepts are interwind and interrelated. Time management is no exception....

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Changes During the Sampling Phase

Sampling process will have changes. Is the product the only thing that changes?
During the sampling phase, chances are that you'll go through a series of tweaks and changes before you nail down a product to confirm for mass production. These changes, albeit needed, also bring about another wave of phenomena in your China project management that you want to be on guard for....

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China Supplier Communication: Question & Answer Tips

Asking your China supplier the right question and interpreting the answer is a critical part of successful China sourcing.
When communicating with Chinese vendors, there's a better way to handle question and answer process than if you were talking to someone within your own company or own country. I recommend it to be more deliberate purposeful and record what has been said....

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