Global manufacturing is essential for U.S. companies looking to expand into international markets, reduce labor costs, and counteract resource shortages. Finding the right global manufacturer, however, takes time and effort.
With more than 46 years of experience in global manufacturing, Pivot International has successfully partnered with thousands of businesses. Not uncommonly, we find that a large number of these businesses have had negative experiences with other partners. These experiences can be avoided by adhering to the following “do’s” and “don’ts”.
Do confirm global sourcing makes sense for your business.
Your company should be able to justify this move from the get-go. Make sure you’re confident that manufacturing overseas is the right decision for you at this time. You can read about the pros and cons of domestic or international production here.
Do ensure you can maintain a physical presence overseas.
Technologically enabled communication is currently driving global business. When it comes to manufacturing, however, it’s advised—and even expected—your company has “boots on the ground.” This is especially true in Asia. Manufacturers in the Philippines expect American companies to set up satellite offices or send over representatives.
Having a physical presence overseas also makes it much easier to problem solve and keep up-to-date on your product and its progress.
Do consider the manufacturer’s experience.
Has the manufacturer worked with companies similar to yours? What about known brands? A manufacturer’s expertise is indicative of its capabilities and overall reliability. A sound demonstration of knowledge and experience is critical.
Don’t underestimate the importance of quality assurance and quality control.
You want your manufacturer to deliver quality every time, on time, not just with small orders or samples. Ask your potential global manufacturer how they manage quality. They should have step-by-step practices in place that occur at every stage of the production cycle. Remember, quality control should start before there is a problem.
Don’t forget to ask about minimum order requirements and payment terms.
Another important consideration is the manufacturer’s MOQ, or, minimum order quantity. MOQ’s vary significantly among global manufacturers. While a Chinese factory usually requires 1000 pcs, Vietnamese manufacturers are known to accept an MOQ of 250-300 pcs. (You can read more about your manufacturing options outside of China here). Before you agree to partner with a company, you must ensure the minimum orders work with your budget. If this is your first time working with the manufacturer, they may require pre-production payment in full. Verify if this is the case.
Don’t jeopardize your timeline.
Be upfront if you need manufacturing to be completed by a specific date. That said, if it’s your first time working with a manufacturer, it’s wise to build in a buffer for potential delays. If possible, try to stay ahead of schedule.
Pivot is a world leader in product development and manufacturing. We offer the seamless convenience of working with a U.S. company and the financial advantages of utilizing our own in-house, offshore, tooling, procurement, and manufacturing capabilities. Contact us today if you’d like to hear more about how working with Pivot can drive your product’s success.