Is quality control inspection really necessary before shipping? What value am I actually getting from inspection, and what risks do I take in forgoing it?
Many importers manufacturing good in ask these questions. And if you’re wise, you too will consider what real benefitsinspection offers and whether these benefits outweigh the costs. Because, ultimately, only you know what product quality your customers demand and the price they’re willing to pay to get it.
So, what are the benefits of quality control inspection for you, the importer? Let’s dive right into those that likely matter most to you.
1. Quality control inspection lowers your costs
Yes. You read that right. You may be thinking, if I have to pay someone to inspect my products, and inspection doesn’t directly improve quality, how can it lower my costs?
Despite the fees you might typically pay someone to visit your supplier’s factory and inspect, product inspection actually tends to lower most importers’ overall costs. Inspection does this mainly by preventing costly rework and limiting defects that result in unsellable goods.
2. Inspection prevents costly product rework and repairs
Let’s imagine you import household refrigerators from a factory in China. You decide to save costs by forgoing inspection. But when you receive the finished goods you find that 30 percent of the units have doors that are out of alignment. Given the high quantity of affected units, you need to hire technicians to fix the defects before you can ship the refrigerators to your customers
3. Quality control inspection limits unsellable goods
We’ve seen how inspection before shipping can help limit the need for costly product rework or repairs. But what about product defects that can’t be corrected and result in unsellable goods? It will bring more loss to you.
4. QC inspection leads to more satisfied customers
If you’re using product inspection to lower your costs, your customers may be delighted to see those savings reflected in a lower price they pay for your products.
But besides more competitive pricing, how else does quality control inspection help you improve your customer satisfaction? Inspection serves your customers by helping you deliver their goods on time and with fewer defects.
5. Inspection helps your customers receive their goods on time
A lesser-known benefit of inspection to your customers is its tendency to prevent production and shipping delays. There are a couple main ways that inspection achieves this:
Inspectors alert you when your supplier’s factory is behind schedule by reporting on production status.
Inspectors alert you to quality issues earlier, especially with during production inspection and incoming quality control.
6. QC inspection improves your supplier relationships
At first glance, it’s easy to see how scrutinizing your supplier’s work can cause tensions to flare between you and your supplier. The inspector’s role is to check the goods and report back to you about any issues they find. So why would your supplier want to risk having to spend more time and resources on your order to correct problems before shipping?
The answer is that some suppliers don’t welcome this risk. These are the kind of suppliers you probably want to avoid. And product inspection helps you avoid them.
7. Inspection helps you screen potential suppliers
The best way to limit defects in your products is to prevent them from occurring in the first place. And the best way to prevent them is to clarify your expectations upfront during the sourcing process before choosing a supplier.
Inspection encourages greater accountability and transparency from suppliers
There are a lot of ways you may be able to hold your suppliers accountable for meeting your requirements. A great way to set establish accountability is to clearly state your expectations in documents, such as purchase order or QC checklist, on which you outline your product specifications, packaging requirements, any required on-site testing procedures for QC and more.