How to Do Quality Control and Inspections in China?
China has already surpassed the USA as far as manufacturing is concerned. The data for 2019 indicates that global manufacturing from China was 28.7% while the same figure for the USA was 16.8%.
Any manufacturer, trader, or importer these days prefers to source several of their goods from China. However, if you are dealing with Chinese manufacturers then it is important, you must ensure that the quality of goods that you receive from China is of the right quality standard.
This is important so that you can maintain your reputation among your customers who recognise your brand as a quality supplier. As people are always concerned about the quality of products, the moment they see the “Made in China” mark.
Therefore, it is essential that you must have a certain process available to you to do proper quality management. You must develop a certain procedure for both quality assurance as well as quality control, which must be rigidly followed.
Quality control should not only be confined only during the manufacturing process but also during packaging and shipping to your country. For example, one must use eco-friendly products during packaging or maintain the consumer rights of your country, etc.
Most companies who are dealing with Chinese manufacturers have a certain procedure in place as far as quality inspection in China is concerned.
One smart way to ensure that all procedure is properly followed at the Chinese factory is to hire a trustworthy and reliable Chinese sourcing agent. An agent can represent your company in China and ensure that all quality procedures are followed in this country as per your requirements.
All these practices can help in building a good reputation for your company and protecting your business interests.
Why quality inspection is so essential?
The following are the main reasons for quality inspection in China:
1. Ensures production of quality goods
QA and QC working together will improve quality and compliance with your needed criteria.
2. Minimises variations in production
Variations in the products can arise during manufacture. Once you comprehend the underlying causes of these differences, you can add steps and checks to your required QA processes to minimise them.
3. Reduces your losses
You can decrease the quantity of potentially unsaleable defective components you get by performing QC checks. Losses increase as the number of defective pieces increases.
4. Increases your planned sales margins
QC inspections lessen your likelihood of acquiring subpar products that you would have to sell for less price.
5. Leads to consumer retention
Based on the quality you anticipate delivering; you would have identified your target market. Even if you sell lower-quality goods at a reduced price, you run the danger of losing that clientele.
6. Increased consumer satisfaction
It enables you to reassure and demonstrate to your clients that you are maintaining the excellence of the goods you are offering them.
Any credentials you can provide them with, such as certifications and accreditations, will boost their happiness and raise the possibility that they will do more long-term business with you.
Assuring them of quality and maintaining their loyalty to you go hand in hand.
How can you integrate QA into your deal?
You need to negotiate with your Chinese supplier and agree on certain quality standards for the item.
To start with, you must decide what quality you desire from your supplier.
- What material type to be used
- From where to source these materials
- Offer your supplier a sample of your product
- Ask the supplier to develop their sample
- What is your minimum AQL (Acceptance Quality Level), how much percentage of defective products you can accept?
Once you have an agreement with your supplier regarding quality inspection in China, then you can consider hiring any inspection company to perform the inspection.
Types of quality inspections
1. Pre-production inspection
The quality inspector or independent inspection firms inspect and validate each component and raw material.
2. During production check
Normally, the production inspection process is carried out after 50% of the goods have been produced. To find any issues with the product, quality inspectors first go to the plant.
After that, units are chosen at random and compared to the product requirements established by the client or pertinent inspection organisations.
3. Final random inspection/pre-shipment inspection
When production is finished and at least 80% of the products are packaged and prepared for shipping, this is done where items are randomly checked.
It entails an in-person product inspection to make sure the goods adhere to your standards and all applicable national, industry, and other regulations. It will also include ensuring that no major/minor defects present in the products.
Things to include in the QC checklist
As mentioned before, while finalizing your order or also before the start of your production, you should discuss with the supplier about your product requirements in a form of a QC checklist.
This QC checklist must outline all the product requirements and also quality standards that your supplier must adhere to along with criteria for inspection. The following are the quality parameters you must include in the QC checklist for quality inspection in China:
- Product requirements: Material, height, weight, etc.
- Packaging & labelling: In many businesses, accurate packaging and labelling are crucial compliance requirements. Certain items require certification and labelling from accredited labs.
- Visual inspection on-site: Informing your supplier of this should be on your list of things to do.
- Defect classification: During QC inspections, defects are divided into three categories:
Always give your quality control inspector an accepted sample in the form of a product, photographs, or videos.
- Functional testing: Specify the procedures for evaluating the use or functionality of the product if you are importing it.
- Special tests: Specific samples are sent to the laboratory for some product kinds, including pharmaceuticals or chemicals, in order to assess their quality in accordance with the importers’ requirements.
- Carton drop-tests: Usually, this is required to check the strength and durability of the packaging, before your goods are transported.
For the best coordination of quality inspection in China, it will be a good idea to hire a sourcing agent in China who can oversee all your quality interest as per your requirements.