Why do many importers use sourcing specialists for their international procurement? Because they want to reduce costs, ensure quality, shorten sourcing lead time and mitigate risks. Most importers don’t have the in-house resources or skills to implement all these by themselves.
Good sourcing specialists can achieve a 20% or more reduction in overall cost. The sourcing specialist can also negotiate on your behalf, manage quality and ensure on-time delivery. So, what do a sourcing specialist do?
1. Choosing right place for your sourcing needs
Sourcing specialists can pre-qualify suppliers, develop the relationship for you and ensure that the products you require are provided in the right place at the right time for the right price. Some specialists have expertise in supplier chain management across borders.
2. Price negotiations
Negotiation on product price, packaging and transportation cost is one of the key roles of sourcing specialists. They provide clients with the lowest possible price based on long term relationships and volume buying power.
Souring specialist can utilize their experience to source directly from manufacturers in right areas, as local language speakers, they can handle negotiations better on behalf of buyers.
3. Sourcing suitable manufacturers
Selecting the most suitable manufacturer for your new product is not easy, you can use the sourcing specialists with a track record in locating and identifying reliable, transparent and capable factories in the best territories. You can focus yourself to marketing for the new products, and make more money at end.
4. Quality control
Good sourcing specialists monitor and ensure that all the factories that they work with meet all government regulations and your product requirements. They can visit factories frequently on behalf of buyers, to monitor incoming materials, semi-finished parts, finished products, and packaging, also witness container loading, to make sure you receive good quality products.
5. Value added services
Good sourcing specialists should be able to provide A to Z full service, including coordination of logistics and shipping, engineering improvements, new product development, and so on.
Regular communication between you, the client, and the sourcing specialists are crucial, try to find the one who have good English capability in both written and spoken, and who are fully aware of culture barriers. Besides of emails, you can do regular video conferences to discuss things thoroughly and make sure you are always on the same page.