Blog Pick of the Week: Top 10 mistakes when outsourcing your China sourcing
Whenever you do business in a culture different from your own, there is so much to learn. There are many nuances that can make or break the deal. This blog from Smart China Sourcing outlines some of the common mistakes.
Most organizations do not have the time or resources to work directly with the manufacturers in China so they must rely on a third party to be their 'eyes and ears on the street'. Because of that, the process of selecting that agent becomes a serious selection process that requires serious attention.
As I was reading through this,the mistakes seemed very logical and easy to avoid. However, I am sure they are often overlooked. Setting clear expectations is critical across the board in any relationship. Along with that comes the risk of making assumptions. If you find yourself doing that, make sure they are communicated and agreed upon. Otherwise, trouble could be brewing.
I know one area that I have fallen into is the excitement to get to the finish line. In doing that, shortcuts are often taken or some steps skipped. BIG MISTAKE!! Make sure to do the homework and due diligence before selecting that agent that will help you with your sourcing in China.
After checking this list, let us know if you think this is accurate. What else would you add?
Hi Cindy: Great find for an instructional article!
I would add a strong note of caution to the article to the point that, if an organization does not have the time or resources to invest in closely choosing, developing and monitoring their off-shore supply chain, they ought not start as it will not likely have the intended benefit.
In my experience, there is far more to be gained by being personally involved in scouting, choosing, developing, mentoring and monitoring my off-shore (and local, for that matter) supply chain; even if there is a third party support entity involved.
In my view, a supply chain starts with good choices of capable and credible member suppliers, but inevitably strong relationships and fairness in dealings are what sustain it over the long term. Supplier and supply chain "buy-in" cannot be reliably obtained through arms-length means ....
I have found, over many years in our business and dealing frequently with off-shore sourcing that when it comes to third party entities, be they sourcing, management or even interpreters.... you never really know who's side they're on. The bottom line, for me, is: you will never derive the sustainable benefits over the long term without direct, personal and appropriately frequent involvement.
The details of how that involvement is successfully structured, metered and delivered as well as where to expect the pay-backs would easily fill a chapter or two in a textbook and could form the basis of a future article.