A Short Guide to Assessing Suppliers in China

The ground rule for every business is that it is essential to find the right partners to deal with. The crucial partner to look for before starting your business is the ideal supplier that meets your commercial needs.

When choosing a proper supplier, a due diligence assessment is necessary to ensure that the prospective counterparty is experienced, professional, and trustworthy.

In order to do business with Chinese suppliers, it is crucial to follow the supplementary steps to ensure that your business is choosing the proper partner. Winton Asia is an expert firm when it comes to supplier assessment, we have direct experience working with international businesses and a network of verified Chinese manufacturers.

In order to properly conduct business in China and help your domestic business flourish, the supplier assessment process is the first crucial step towards your business’ milestones.

With the proper research and background check, you can find the appropriate supplier for your business. The assessment process is invaluable if you are looking to find the best possible option among the many Chinese enterprises around the country.

Winton Asia has hand-picked suppliers specializing in a wide range of industrial design and manufacturing. If we do not have the ideal partner for you on hand, we will scour the country looking for the supplier that best suits your needs.

There are two major steps to ensure that your future supplier is the ideal candidate for your business:

First, the preliminary check, which is designed to give you some initial insight about the supplier and their capabilities to achieve the goals your business is looking for.

Second is the on-site check where Winton specialists will visit the supplier to ensure that all materials, manufacturing processes, capacities, and more satisfy your needs.

Read on to explore more information about Winton’s standard processes for preliminary and on-site checks.

Preliminary check

At this stage, you go through the process of shortlisting manufacturers without visiting them physically, but just contacting them remotely.

There is a large amount of effort and research that goes into the preliminary phase of the assessment. Without conducting the right research, you might fall trap to a business scam or an unprofessional supplier that is unsuitable for your business needs.

  • You can use different tools for sourcing the suppliers. Online platforms such as  Alibaba, Made-in-China or GlobalSources are very valuable in forming the initial picture of the market in your sector. Or else you can visit different international offline exhibitions or business fairs which will help to get the contacts of suppliers. Be aware of the companies who are showing a different image from the reality of their capabilities.
  • In order to achieve maximum results of the preliminary check, you should call the supplier first and ask them to provide you with detailed information about the company, including scan-copies of business licenses, export certificates, ISO/TUV assessment reports (if any). When receiving the information, you can easily use the certificates to check its authenticity. Having a business license number in your hand allows you even to check if there are any penalties or if the company has been put on the blacklist.

Apart from online scouting or visiting international expos, Winton Asia has years of experience searching thousands of supplier options to ensure that our clients are paired with their ideal supplier. We can save you the hassle of looking for lists and options for suppliers by using our established assessment database and sourcing services.

As you sort through the options, you can choose the shortlist candidates for the next phase of assessment. The preliminary check creates the base result of the assessment and the onsite check gives the process a complete result.

Onsite check

Once you select the potential suppliers that appear trustworthy and easy to cooperate with, you must proceed to the onsite check. This is where you review the supplier’s capabilities first-hand. With attention to quality care and output capacities, the managers of each supplier will provide you the detailed insight that you need to make the proper choices.

Additionally, now is the time to discuss product details more deeply with technical department of the factory, negotiate better conditions and lead time with your managers or CEO of the company.

This is the final stage of the supplier verification process. Winton Asia recommends incorporating the following options to ensure that you choose the ideal supplier:

  •  Visiting the factory – getting acquainted with its material and technical base, personnel, and management.
  •  Assessment of production capacities – obtaining a complete picture of the capabilities of the enterprise and the volume of the possible production of goods.
  •  Assessment of the general condition of the factory – identification of the reality of the production and its compliance with industry standards.
  •  Description of the production processes – determination of compliance with current quality requirements and industry standards.
  •  Suppliers quality control system assessment – examination of the required documentation as well as checking certain work processes and communication with authorized personnel to confirm its reliability.
  •  Visiting the warehouse and assessing the workload of the factory – acquaintance with the products, their quality, and the ability to manufacture in the required time and in the right amount.
  •  Identifying a legitimate manufacturer. You should avoid such factories that wish not to disclose their name, location, and other data, as well as those who are not willing to send you essential company documents. Ask them to provide you with the information about experience along with some customer references.

The Results of the Supplier Assessment and its Benefits for Your Company

Timely and proper inspection of suppliers with an organized assessment will confirm the following details:

  •  The reality of the existence of the company/factory
  •  Conformity to the declared business activities
  •  Availability of permits for production
  •  Availability of export opportunities for the sale of goods outside China
  •  The readiness of the manufacturer to cooperate with you
  •  Your desire and willingness to sign an agreement specifically with this manufacturer

By following the steps for the supplier assessment you will be on the right track to finding the ideal counterparty candidates. We can expedite the supplier assessment process by utilizing over 10 years of industry expertise and a wide network of professionally verified enterprises.

If you find this information interesting or helpful for the growth of your business, please be sure to look out for our future articles or contact us today for a personal consultation.

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