For procurement practitioners, one of the most basic and important jobs is to find the right manufacturers. Different industries have different requirements for manufacturers. However, in this age of information overload and abundance, procurement personnel often have too many choices and do not know how to choose, so how should they find a high-quality manufacturer quickly and accurately?
What is a High-Quality Manufacturer？
A good manufacturer should have the following 6 characteristics:
It is important to find manufacturers who can actually manufacture the desired product. Generally, the only reliable way to verify a manufacturer’s actual production capabilities is to visit the manufacturers in person or through a third-party agent, and high-quality manufacturers will usually allow verification by visiting or auditing their factories. We can learn about manufacturers by verifying the following: Raw material and finished goods inventory, quality control, R&D capabilities, equipment maintenance Certification or license, etc.
Good Financial Status:
A manufacturer’s financial status is an important criterion for measuring whether a manufacturer can stabilize its supply capacity for a long time, which will directly affect its delivery and contract performance. If the manufacturer has financial problems and the turnover is ineffective, it will cause the shutdown of production, bankruptcy, and bankruptcy, which will lead to our trading crisis.
Degree of Cultural Fit:
Find a manufacturer whose goals are consistent with the company’s goals, and it will be easier for both parties to understand each other and cooperate better. Under the same conditions, manufacturers with customer resources similar to your company’s business will better meet your requirements. At the same time, a willingness to work with you and prioritize your requirements is one of the important characteristics of a good manufacturer.
Harmonious Internal Organization and Management:
The internal organization and management of manufacturers are also factors that affect the service quality of manufacturers in the future. It is possible to evaluate whether the internal organizational structure of manufacturers is reasonable from the evaluation of manufacturers’ peers, customer satisfaction, factory management, and product production processes.
Easy to Communicate:
Language and cultural barriers can create challenges for businesses looking for overseas manufacturers. Working with manufacturers who are easy to communicate with can effectively prevent problems ranging from production delays to defective products.
Ethics may not be the first factor when companies look for manufacturers. But auditing a manufacturer or potential factory for social responsibility isn’t difficult, and a complete disregard for ethics can lead to problems for a company’s business.
How to Find a High-Quality Manufacturer?
Local inspections help to better understand and find highly matched manufacturers more quickly and are also very helpful for delivery and stocking. It depends on market position, production capacity, product quality, price level, personnel quality, corporate vision, and development strategy.
Search Through the Internet:
The Internet is the most economical, fastest, and easiest way, so it is also the most widely used way. Whether it is search engines, various professional B2B websites, online trade fairs, or even current new media, they can all be used for manufacturers’ development. However, due to the virtual nature of the network and the profit-seeking nature of the Internet, procurement must pay attention to risk management.
The resource relationship network is also a commonly used search channel. Based on the agglomeration of resources, business owners or purchasers can also find relevant and advantageous manufacturers on their own network. (Industry product platform, procurement resource group, etc.)
Get Referrals from Your Clients or Friends
Your customer’s procurement or engineer may have been in this industry for many years, with rich experience and professionalism. They may know more about the market supply of the products they purchase than we do, and they are likely to recommend a more suitable supply to you.
As a buyer who has a lot of phone calls or visits every day, we should make relevant records. Because this is also one of the most common channels for sourcing development manufacturers, maybe a quality manufacturer is right in front of you.
As the so-called “know the enemy, win every battle”, it is also a common method to keep an eye on the industry competitors and analyze the material brand manufacturers’ resources from the competitors’ products. This is mainly aimed at stronger competitors with high market share in various industries. Enterprises can cooperate with manufacturers based on their own actual conditions to improve their competitiveness.
Utilize Existing Information – Phone Book
In companies with better management, a file or roster of qualified manufacturers will be established. Thus we can select among existing manufacturers, and analyze or understand whether they meet the requirements of the items they need. Such as excellent quality, on-time delivery, reasonable price, and necessary services.
Internal Staff Recommendation
The introduction of manufacturers by internal employees is also frequently encountered by purchasers. Of course, this requires purchasers to adhere to the principle of fairness and justice to identify manufacturers with competitive advantages. It is necessary to avoid the failure of manufacturers’ development standards to be implemented due to internal relations.
Attend Some Trade Shows
One of the best places to find quality manufacturers is a trade show. You’ll have the opportunity to see which product vendors are serious about their market, glean valuable information from one-on-one conversations with sales reps, gain insight into the company, and be able to instantly compare various competitors.
Trade Publications and Catalogs
Magazines and newspapers specific to your industry or market are also sources of potential manufacturers. While a company cannot be judged by advertising, some useful insights can be gleaned from their marketing messages as well as articles from publications.
Domestic and Foreign Trade Associations
With the increasing market competition, many of its industries will set up industry associations to integrate resources and work together as a group. Using the resources of the association is also one of the channels to find high-quality manufacturers.
Domestic and Foreign News Media Communication
Newspapers, magazines, radio and television, television, etc. This kind of traditional medium is still a channel for some professional fields or vertical segments to obtain manufacturers’ information.
Domestic and Foreign Procurement Guidelines
In general, the traditional procurement media with professional characteristics is still applicable, especially for some special fields, such as the watch industry, textile industry, petroleum industry, the lighting industry, etc., there are procurement guide publications and magazines in their fields for reference and selection its manufacturers.
Enterprise Website and WeChat Official Platform Publicity
Through marketing publicity, enterprises publish their procurement needs on their websites to attract quotations from potential manufacturers, which is also a commonly used search channel at present.
Various Commodity Order Fairs are Organized by the Government
This is organized by the local government, or a product ordering fair with government characteristics, which generally has national or regional characteristics and cultural characteristics.
Government-related Statistical Reports and Publications
Every year, the government has relevant statistical reports and publications, and you can also find typical representative manufacturers of current quality.
Product Wholesale Market
This method is aimed at some sub-industries, and the purchaser can find suitable product manufacturers through the product wholesale market, thereby avoiding the cost caused by too many middlemen.
Government agencies now prefer to search for manufacturers through public bidding, so that qualified manufacturers have the opportunity to participate in the bidding, but companies usually rarely use this method. Because this is a passive search for manufacturers, in other words, if the most suitable supplier does not take the initiative to bid, the purpose of the public solicitation will be lost.
The purchaser of the enterprise selects manufacturers that meet the requirements of the enterprise through bidding, formulates an order share management strategy, attracts manufacturers to participate in the competition, and selects the best supplier to allocate the order share.
In some sub-sectors, buyers can use some competitions to attract manufacturers to participate, and then choose their favorite partners. (eg: annual mascot design competition, various TV talent shows, etc.)
Professional third-party agencies
For third-party procurement or third-party information platforms, manufacturers and demand are focused on their competitive advantages, and there are a large number of supplier resources for enterprises to choose from. This is also a more commonly used development method.
To sum up, in the context of global competition, there are more search channels for supplier development, but at the same time, the test for procurement personnel is also increasing. Therefore, as the basic work of supplier development, it is very important to sort out, collect and analyze supplier information channels. Once this part of the work is done well, you can quickly find development objects and resource channels when you encounter development needs, and quickly enter the essence without wasting valuable time like looking for a needle in a haystack.