• Elksourcing:Essential Knowledge to Quality Inspection

    Elksourcing:Essential Knowledge to Quality Inspection

    For importers, it’s important to have its own inspector or 3-rd party inspector to do quality inspection prior to shipment, however, the process and exact work details are daunting for most new importers.  Most product inspections follow a process with several specific steps. When an inspection goes wrong, it’s most often because steps weren’t clear, or inspectors otherwise didn’t follow them according to the buyer’s instructions. 1. Pulling random samples for inspection Most importers know the importance of pulling random samples during QC inspection using a statistically-significant acceptance sampling method. Without pulling samples randomly, you risk getting a report that doesn’t fairly represent the quality of the entire shipment. Factory staff can actually hinder inspection accuracy if permitted to choose which units will be checked. Some may “cherry pick” samples or direct inspectors to check units they know will meet requirements from a specific area of the warehouse. 2. Checking the product against…

  • Elksourcing:Checklist Used in Quality Inspection

    Elksourcing:Checklist Used in Quality Inspection

    A quality checklist refers to a document that outlines quality requirements and specifications in a clear and concise manner for your supplier. An effective quality control checklist template should cover the following technical areas. 1. Packaging requirements This first major section should contain details about the shipper carton, any inner carton and any retail carton or packaging. Packaging requirements are important for your supplier to reference here, regardless of whether you will verify packaging during inspection. The packaging section should typically contain the following:  A.    Packaging weight and dimensions B.    Shipper carton labeling and marking requirements C.   Shipper carton material requirements (e.g. single or double layer, binding method, white or brown cardboard) D.   Packaging method and assortment E.    Retail packaging printings, graphics and labeling Product requirements shown on the quality control sheet should include: A.    Product weight and dimensions B.    Material and construction C.   Product color (consider including Pantone color codes where applicable) D.   Markings and labeling (e.g. UL…

  • Elksourcing:Good Suppliers Share Same Good Qualities

    Elksourcing:Good Suppliers Share Same Good Qualities

    Per my 20-year experience in global sourcing and quality management, I’ve learned that good suppliers share the same good qualities. 1. Accountability for quality issues Admitting to a mistake can be difficult. But when your goods are on the line, working with a quality supplier that takes responsibility for their half of a deal can make a world of difference. That’s why accountability for quality issues tops the list of characteristics of a good supplier. But a supplier without accountability is more likely to deflect responsibility. They might tell you the quality of the fabric was poor and difficult to work with. Or, if you used a third-party inspector to check the goods, the supplier might accuse the inspector of incompetence or unprofessionalism. A supplier that won’t own up to their mistakes can hinder your ability to meet deadlines and product requirements. Look for signs of accountability as a key characteristic of…

  • Elksourcing:Various Quality Inspections in Supply Chain

    Elksourcing:Various Quality Inspections in Supply Chain

    When a company purchases items from a vendor, a quality inspection is usually necessary. There are various quality inspections in supply chain such as inspections during the manufacturing process, inspection of the final finished product, and inspections while the items are stored in the warehouse. 1. Importance of Inspection of Purchased Items The quality inspection occurs so that a company can verify that the product is within certainly prescribed tolerances in order for the product to be useful. For example, a company may purchase a paint additive to be used in their manufacturing process, but before it can be used, it has to be inspected to see that the chemical and physical composition of the additive is within the tolerances to be used in the process. When a purchasing agreement is made with a vendor, it will define the characteristics of the product that are to be inspected and the tolerances that would be…

  • Elksourcing:Why Early QC Involvement Is Important?

    Elksourcing:Why Early QC Involvement Is Important?

    Successfully sourcing your products from China implies being careful and diligent about each step of the manufacturing process. QC (Quality Control) is one important step that responsible importers implement at some stages of their production, usually before shipment because it is believed to be the most cost-efficient stage for quality control. Pre-shipment inspections are best sellers in the 3rd party QC industry; they are performed when production is finished (or almost finished). But without earlier preparation and follow-up with the factory, these inspections might present a few risks that you need to consider: 1. Costly Rework: Identifying defects late during the production cycle involves higher costs of rework and repair. Unpacking all the finished goods, sorting the defective products, reworking or changing them and repacking them again is costly. 2. Negative impact on Time-to-Market: If problems are found, repairing them often delays the shipment of your goods, which might affect your time…

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