Global sourcing has become increasingly popular among businesses, especially small and medium-sized companies that can’t afford expensive domestic sources. However, many companies make the mistake of not doing their research or relying on the advice of others. Without doing their own fact-checking, so they end up with faulty products. Unimpressive shipping timelines, and poor communication with their suppliers. By avoiding these common sourcing mistakes that businesses often make. You can save time and money while producing a better end product. Read on to learn more about each of these common sourcing mistakes businesses. Often make along with tips on how to avoid them.
1) Not Considering All Costs of global sourcing
In your eagerness to get a deal, it’s easy to forget about all of your sourcing expenses. Like salaries and travel costs. When you outsource overseas, not only do you have to factor in any associated fees. But you also need to include additional expenses like international travel and employee salary costs. For example, if your employee spends 3 months in China sourcing products at $3,000 per month. For an average spend of $25/day for food and lodging. (food and lodging are two things that are often not factored into hourly consulting fee rates). That’s a total expense of $9,000 – $15k! The reality is that sourcing can be expensive, so make sure you budget accordingly from day one.
2) Compromising on Quality
While it’s tempting to go with lower-quality materials or contractors because they come at a lower price, you should avoid that temptation. If your clients have a bad experience with your products, they won’t just forget about you – they’ll find someone else to buy from instead. Ensuring quality will also help prevent returns and make sure that your customers are satisfied with their purchases. You can increase quality without increasing costs by being open. To different options and willing to compromise on something less important (like design) for something more important (like material).
3) Neglecting to Outsource Anything
Just because you don’t have a resource available locally doesn’t mean you can’t source it remotely. In fact, many companies have found great success sourcing services and products. Bbroad by using online tools like oDesk or Elance to hire freelancers. With different skill sets and at lower costs than they would find locally. Outsourcing lets you work with people who are experienced in things. That aren’t native to your business—which will also help you diversify your team and create new opportunities for innovation. Here are some additional considerations on how to effectively manage an overseas workforce.
4) Failing to Adequately Research Key Factors for Selection
Before selecting a company, firm, or service provider, you should research their global sourcing capabilities and track record. Just because someone claims to be capable of global sourcing doesn’t mean they have a proven history of success; when in doubt, always make sure you dig deeper and do your due diligence before moving forward. Poorly Defining Criteria for Selection. Before selecting a company, firm, or service provider. Make sure that you know exactly what kind of results you are looking for – and that these criteria are clearly defined in advance. Having clear goals will allow both yourself and your partner to set up realistic milestones.
5) Not Rounding Up Enough Suppliers
It is a common mistake for many companies when choosing global sourcing services. To start with as few suppliers as possible, as it can save time and money in the initial research. However, going after too few suppliers can significantly reduce your chances of finding one that will be a good fit. Try starting with 10-20 different suppliers; you may find that some do not have enough available supply to meet your needs. But some are more likely to give you a good offer if they know they have competitors. Consider using an e-procurement system like SourceBottle or SAP Ariba. Network to easily organize and manage bids from multiple suppliers simultaneously.
6) Failing to Set Realistic Expectations
A common mistake, especially for new and small business owners. Many businesses believe that hiring overseas workers will be much cheaper than using domestic ones. They’re wrong. For example, you could have a product manufactured in China. When it comes time to ship it back to your office in San Francisco it costs $250-300 per pallet. You will pay for shipping from China and then again from SF which can put you at risk of going over budget on your project.
A good supplier network helps you grow. The best way to do that is by knowing what you’re doing and avoiding mistakes. Your success depends on it. When it comes to international business, don’t let mistakes come between you and your goals. If in doubt, make sure you have a reputable China sourcing company. On your side to ensure your orders are manufactured exactly how they should be. You wouldn’t want quality issues to lead your customers away from you now, would you? Doing business globally means putting yourself out there for scrutiny in ways. That can seem alien at first but if approached with due diligence can offer rewards aplenty – for those who take them.
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