How Well Do You Know Your China Supplier? Part II

Today, I was thinking to write about sourcing and here was some great information that I had not read. China Law Blog mentioned them.   China Performance Group write this very nice piece you can find here.

The article shows how past performance is little indicator of future quality.  Go take a look.

This reminds me of an experience I had in 2010. (naturally some facts changed to protect identity)

The China factory is a one stop shop for a US based and owned company and had been for 10 years. The U.S. based purchasing manager and his team had been to the factory many times and had been given extensive tours.  The Chinese factory had not sought to deceive them in any way. It was an exemplary relationship.

One day rust shows up at a customer site on a plating part that came from the China supplier.

They ask us to look into it.  The U.S. told me the China factory had a multi -million dollar plating line that did their parts.  They said the problem could not be from there, but we should go talk with them.

I went over with a Chinese associate, and they showed us the equipment  They had five plastic barrels that they used to clean and plate. It was all done by hand.  The cleanest looked like a sewer.

I asked for their control plan. They changed the topic.  I asked more directly, and they told us they did not have one.

I asked him about the multi-million $ plating line.  He took me over there, and yes it was running like the U.S. said. I asked if they could run the  parts in question on that line.  They said they did not do that kind of plating on that line.

The U.S. did not believe me when I told them, and I had to send pictures.  They contacted them directly, and finally when denial ended, the whole U.S. team panicked.  Over a few months all was resolved. Really, this is an exemplary relationship.

How well do you know your China Supplier?  How are your parts being managed?

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Posted in: China, Leadership, Sourcing

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