How to Choose Product Inspection in China to Reduce the Risks
If you are trying to learn about the types of product inspection in China and other low-cost Asian countries, you are in the right article! First, let’s talk about two different basic concepts here.
Why Do You Need China Inspection Services?
Compliance inspection: check whether the goods supplied by the supplier comply with the laws and regulations of the import and export country or the quality requirements stipulated by the relevant Banfanjia of the import and export country.
Find problems in time: avoid delivery delays and product defects in time, and take emergency and remedial measures at the first time;
Ensure product quality: reduce or avoid consumer complaints, return and exchange, and loss of business reputation caused by receiving inferior products;
Reduce the risk of compensation and punishment: reduce the risk of compensation and administrative punishment due to the sale of inferior products;
Verify the quantity and quality of the goods: verify the quality and quantity of the goods to avoid contract disputes;
Examine and compare suppliers in advance: compare and select the best supplier and obtain relevant information and suggestions
Cost-saving: reduce high management fees and labor costs for monitoring and testing products.
What’s the Difference Between Factory Audits vs Product Inspection Services
Remember that supplier audits are focused on the big picture and are generally conducted before establishing a relationship with a new factory. China Inspection services are about the little picture and are generally used to help manage existing relationships.
Audits help you to make good long-term decisions. They also help you to decide which suppliers to work with so you can get the best results over time.
Having a good mix of audits and inspections in your quality control program is important. So, be sure to consider both to help ensure the success of your projects.
Now, let’s get into more details of the part of the factory audit.
What is Examined During China Factory & Supplier Audits?
Factory requirements vary across different industries. For clothing brands, it has become very much important that the working conditions inside a factory should be ethical. And if you buy medical equipment, you need to make sure your manufacturer works with strict rules and regulations. To serve these needs, different types of factory audits exist, focusing on a specific area.
The three most common factory audits in China are listed below:
Initial Factory Evaluation
The Initial Factory Evaluation is the most basic factory audit among the three. It focuses on typical but vitally significant aspects of a manufacturer for the supplier selection process. The audit report generally includes, but is not limited to:
- Factory profile (address, major products, the main export countries).
- Staff count (number of workers for production, engineers, QC personnel).
- Production process (describing the production steps).
- Machinery & Equipment (condition of machines, their type, and number).
- Quality Management (work procedures, work instructions).
- Official Documents (licenses & certificates)
- Facility (images of the workshop, QC room & warehouse).
Technical Quality Audit
A Technical Quality Audit provides a more clear evaluation of the factory’s equipment maintenance, management techniques, and quality of the system, making it easy for you to determine the manufacturer’s strengths & weaknesses.
It includes the same information, and also, the auditor evaluates:
- Quality Management (objectives & action plans).
- Supplier Selection (procedures in progress to vet sub-suppliers).
- Internal QC (quality procedures & revisions).
- Capacity (comparing the same products from different manufacturers).
- Use of Data (documentation & analysis of inspection yields, defect rates, resource needs, corrective actions).
- Equipment Maintenance (calibration records & certification of equipment).
- Employee training ( training records & work instructions).
Social Compliance Audit
A Social Compliance Audit focuses on a factory’s consent with social, environmental, and legal standards. This is essential for the protection of your brand. A Social Compliance Audit includes:
- Labor Policies (child labor, forced labor).
- Safety Policies (evacuation plan & fire prevention).
- Environmental Policies (waste disposal, hazardous chemicals & energy use).
- Health & Safety (in workshops & buildings).
- Working hours (reviewing documents & employee interviews).
- Compensation (respecting minimum wages, reviewing payment records)
Our factory audits and supplier audits provide you with a detailed analysis of the condition, strengths, and weaknesses of your supplier. This service can also help the factory to understand areas requiring improvement to better meet the buyer’s needs.
As you select new vendors, reduce the number of your vendors to more manageable levels, and improve overall performance, our factory and supplier audit services provide an effective way to enhance that process at a reduced cost to you.
When Do you need Factory & Supplier Audits?
It’s essential that you perform a factory audit before working with the factory. Once your relationship begins, you should also do occasional follow-up audits to ensure compliance and track improvements.
Regular audits will help you improve efficiency and productivity with your supplier. And they’ll help you minimize risk in your supply chain.
You can also be sure that you’re in compliance with laws and regulations. And you can be more confident in your ability to guarantee quality.
Ok, next let’s talk about the production inspection service in China. First, I will talk about the On-site Quality Control China Inspections Services
On-site quality China inspection services require inspectors to visit the producer’s factory at any stage during manufacturing to monitor the process based on the requirement of the supplier or buyer. Inspectors focus on the client’s requirements. There are 4 common types of on-site quality control inspections:
4 Types of China Inspection Services
The main task of Product China inspection services is to identify problems and defects early to provide authentic products to consumers. China inspection services help you save money and time by eliminating process problems and defects (if present) and ensuring that the final product meets the customers’ requirements. The following are the types of China inspection services are most buyers choose.
Pre-Production Inspection (PPI)
The Pre-Production Inspection (PPI) is conducted before the production process begins and helps to assess the quantity and quality of the raw materials and components and whether they conform to the relevant product specifications. A PPI is beneficial when you work with a new supplier, especially if your project is a large contract that has critical delivery dates. This inspection can help to reduce or eliminate communication between you and your supplier on issues regarding production timelines, shipping dates, and quality expectations.
During Production Inspection (DUPRO)
During production inspection (DPI) also known as DUPRO, is a quality control inspection conducted while production is underway. This step is particularly useful for products that are in continuous production that have strict requirements and when quality issues have been found prior to manufacturing during an earlier PPI.
DPI inspections take place when only 10-15% of units are completed so that any deviations can be identified, have feedback given, and any defects can be re-checked to confirm they have been corrected. It enables you to confirm that quality, as well as compliance to specifications, is being maintained throughout the production process. It also provides early detection of any issues requiring correction, thereby reducing delays and rework.
Pre-shipment inspection (PSI)
Pre-shipment inspections (PSI) are an important step in the quality control process and the method for checking the quality of goods before they are shipped. PSI ensures that production complies with the specifications of the buyer. This inspection process is conducted on finished products when at least 80% of the order has been packed for shipping. Random samples are selected and inspected for defects against the relevant standards and procedures.
Container loading/loading supervision (LS)
Container loading and unloading inspections ensure your products are loaded and unloaded correctly. Inspectors will supervise throughout the whole process and ensure your products are handled professionally to guarantee their safe arrival to their destination.
This inspection will usually take place at your chosen factory while the cargo is being loaded into the shipping container and at the destination once the products have arrived and are being unloaded. This process includes evaluating the condition of the shipping container, verifying all the product information, quantities, and packaging compliance.
I highly recommend providing your inspection agents with a Product Specifications Sheet. It can be used as a quality checklist and ensure requirements are followed.
A quality control (QC) checklist, also known as the inspection checklist, is a criteria sheet to clarify product requirements. Five key elements should be outlined extensively and clearly in your quality control checklist: including….
- Product requirements. To avoid confusion, product requirements should specify materials to be used, and specifications like weight and dimensions. You can include a sample with the color for comparison. For electronics, including labeling and markings like CE mark.
- Packaging requirements. An effective quality control checklist clarifies how the products should be packaged, including weight, dimensions, and labeling requirements like size, contents, and markings. Labeling is particularly important if the cartons convey your brand.
- On-site quality checks and tests. To avoid non-compliance and quality issues, you should list the tests and inspections, outline tolerances, and specify pass/fail criteria.
- Defect classification. It is used to determine whether the product passes or fails the inspections. Defects under the AQL standard are classified into three types – minor defects, major defects, and critical defects that should not be tolerated.
- Constructive collaboration between all parties in a quality control chain is vital for success. You must outline how all parties will collaborate during the inspection and start by consulting your supplier and QC staff as you develop your QC checklist.
How to start a Product inspection in China?
The typical cost for the China product inspection service mentioned above is around $200 – $300. Based on our many year’s experiences in communicating with the factories, the process works like this:
First, you will have an agreement with the supplier about the highest defective product rates, which means the percentage of the number of defective products cannot exceed these criteria.
Next, after the production is done, you hire the inspection staff, and they will go to the factory to do the product inspection there.
Once they are done with the inspection, they will provide you a detailed inspection report.
OK, these inspections we have talked about are all done on-site, now we will introduce another inspection method, which is an off-site factory inspection.
100% product inspection in China
With the development of the e-commerce business, In addition to the four types of quality inspections above, another procedure also exists. That is “Have the manufacturer of the goods deliver them to a facility (often called an “inspection center” or a “QC platform”) where all the pieces will be checked.
A piece-by-piece inspection involves checking each item to evaluate a range of variables including general appearance, workmanship, function, and safety. This inspection process can be carried out either before or after the packaging inspection.
Here, we have a little video to show you how we did the piece-by-piece inspection of a handkerchief for our Japan amazon seller. They have really high requirement of the product quality, even require us to cut off all the threads on each handkerchief. A very detailed inspection service like this will definitely reduce or avoid the return or exchange rate of the products.
When do you need a 100% quality inspection?
From our experience, I would like to point out three reasons why some importers want to do 1 by 1 100% quality inspection:
1. Return defective products fee is high – it’s worth spending more time and money cleaning up all the bad products.
2. There is a strong suspicion that many products have quality problems and that the supplier’s quality control is not doing a good job.
3. After the inspection, it is possible to replace inferior products with quality ones.
4. Bundle/re-package for your requirement
Why 100% product inspection is important for Amazon sellers:
|Your customers||Your profit||Your responsibilities|
|About one-third of online returns are due to damaged or inferior products||Reducing returns can increase profits by up to 50%||As a seller, you are responsible for ensuring that the product meets the legal and regulatory requirements of the target market.|
Is it more Expensive to Do Random Inspection vs 100% Quality Inspection?
Most people would say, “Yes, it’s more expensive.”
However, this is not always the case. We’ve had a lot of situations where the cost of full load is very similar.
Let’s give you an example:
1% of product defects and these defects have been documented and are not difficult to examine
The unit price of the product is $5
The fixed installation cost is approximately $100
The inspector can check 50items within 1 hour.
The operator is charged RMB100 per hour for all time the product is inspected.
The cost of sending a professional QC to the factory is $299 per person per day.
To make a fair comparison, we estimate that importers will still need to pay for the defective goods after a random inspection.
Cost comparison – random inspection vs 100% quality inspection
Overall, if you really want a fair comparison of the cost for a random inspection and one-by-one inspection, you need to consider all these factors including your product price, shipping, selling and returning price, etc.
Should 100% Quality Inspection be Finished in the supplier’s factory?
If the quantity is small and the product is simple, it can be done in the factory where the goods are manufactured.
However, if the work required five or more working days, the cost would increase significantly, which might not be realistic.
We provide 100% production inspections in China.
Deliver a batch of products to Supplyia warehouse to do 100% inspection by trained operators, and repacked immediately.
It is more efficient and much cheaper than hiring people to do it in the factory. One of the great advantages here is speed and simplicity.
If you are choosing a product inspection in China method when you import from China, you can refer to the above content. If you have any questions, you can contact us.