Chinese New Year (CNY) is the most important nation holiday in China, during this period, hundreds of millions of people move across China in order to join their families for the holiday. But the congestion can make traveling very difficult, so it is not recommended to plan any type of trip during this time period.
How Can Impact Your Products?
Chinese New Year affects manufacturing in a major way. The majority of the Chinese factory work force consists of migrant workers. And there are so many factories all over China that offer similar wages. It should come as no surprise, then, that some workers choose to return to work after the holiday, while some choose to stay at home and others choose to work in another factory or an entirely different city. It’s no exaggeration to say that all Chinese factories have difficulty getting their workers back after the holiday.
Chinese New Year affects manufacturing by forcing factories to rush to meet deadlines. Imagine you have a factory with 100 workers. After Chinese New Year rolls, around you’ll be lucky to retain 70 workers. What does this mean for your factory? This means you will have to hire and train new workers within a very short period of time or risk delaying orders. As a result, very few factories can deliver orders on-time with the same quality consistency during this period as compared to before Chinese New Year.
Now the question of quality over timeliness is raised. Of course, suppliers will make promises to meet certain quality standards and deadlines when you’re placing your order because they want to secure the business. But when a factory is faced with worker turnover as high as 30 percent after the holiday, the chances of a supplier following through on these promises will be slim to none. With a shortage of both time and trained workers, factory management often resorts to using inexperienced workers and rushing production. The predictable result is usually a dramatic drop in product quality. If you’re a buyer importing goods from China during this time, do you value product quality over receiving your order on-time? What can you do to make sure your order ships on-time and meets quality standards?
How to Avoid Delays and a Drop in Quality?
The next time Chinese New Year comes around, be sure to stock up your product inventory. By keeping some inventory in reserve, you will have a cushion in case your next order is delayed. Secondly, plan out your orders well after the holiday so your factory will have sufficient time to recruit and train more workers. Talk to your supplier about CNY and ask the factory manager how they plan to limit the negative impact of the holiday on production. Finally, carry out product inspection to verify the quality first-hand and before the order ships. This is especially important if you must receive orders close to CNY, as quality is more likely to slip around this time period.
CNY is a busy time for people in China. Delays are very common among travelers and factories. So, if you’re manufacturing goods in China during this time, be sure to minimize delays and maximize quality by:
1). Stocking up on inventory to avoid a shortage during CNY
2). Planning out your orders after the holiday and establishing deadlines with suppliers
3). Talking to your supplier about measures they plan to take to protect their production; and
4). Carrying out product inspection of your orders to make sure the products you will receive meet the quality standards you pay for.
And if you happen to be in China during CNY and get invited to someone’s hometown nearby, go have a look and experience how Chinese people celebrate their New Year. But remember to stay far away from highways during this time, or you’re sure to face some serious delays.