In offshore manufacturing, we have abundant methods of lightening-fast communication at our fingertips. You would think providing a response in would be a no brainer. Actually the power of response is taken for granted and too-often ignored.

When communication is viewed as perpetually available and easy, it’s taken for granted.

  • The follow-up is always someone else’s responsibility.
  • The supplier should know what to do.
  • It’s just business, I cannot reply on every RFQ I blast out.
  • Of course everything is proceeding OK.
  • If there’s news, I’ll let them know.
  • There’s nothing interesting to update. They should trust us.
  • That’s a list of thoughts from both buyer and supplier side in offshore manufacturing. Perhaps not actually said word for word, but that’s what the lack of communication shows.

    In offshore manufacturing, a professional response from the buyer’s side shows…

    The project is still alive and the factory needs to keep it on their radar.

    The buyer side is still analyzing the quote and crunching numbers; hold tight and be prepared to receive our decision.

    A response let’s you stand out from other buyers and gain supplier attention.

    A response brings preparation

    If you know the project is about to rock n’ roll, a response  can guide your supplier into preparation mode and thoughtfulness.

    This sort of response lets the supplier know the order is coming and you can take advantage of this interim period to ask pertinent questions. You know, the kind of questions you wish you would’ve asked before you sent the deposit.

    The response can bring closure good or bad

    Let the supplier know WHY the project didn’t come to fruition. Especially, if it’s a supplier you hope to use as possible partner.

    Let them know what they did wrong or if the price was out of your range.

    Let the supplier know if the lack of order wasn’t them but the final customer decided to go somewhere else.

    This kind of detail helps the supplier improve and to be ready for the next quoting effort.

    Shows appreciation for efforts

    If the supplier spends effort in quoting and sampling…sure they can chase the buyer down and find out what happened. But wouldn’t it be cool if you gave them a full-rundown on the good and bad? This is how you grow a connection.

    Let the supplier know WHY the project didn’t come to fruition. Especially if it’s a supplier you hope to use as possible partner.

    It’s sort of like the “common courtesy of electronic communication”.

    But a response in offshore manufacturing, is more than common courtesy. It avoids production errors, clarifies interest and sustains bridges.