5 Common Problems of Pre-Shipment Inspections in China

Are you concerned that your pre-shipment inspection in China may not be conducted properly? Read about 5 common problems and how to avoid them.

Are you concerned that your pre-shipment inspection of products being imported to China may not be conducted properly?

You’re not alone.

Big companies want to be sure their products are inspected according to their standards in order to minimize risk and returns, plus maintain an untarnished brand image.

In this article, we’ll present 5 common problems of pre-shipment inspections in China and how to avoid these problems.

What is a Pre-Shipment Inspection?

A pre-shipment inspection is a systematic inspection of samples of goods selected randomly from all batches of your order. This inspection is conducted when your production is at least 80% complete.

It’s meant to provide one last opportunity for your company to take corrective action before your product is finished and packed.

As such, you want to be sure that the inspection company you hire will do a good job.

What are 5 Common Problems of Pre-Shipment Inspections in China?

1. Conflicting interest of the inspection agency.

Inspections are only as effective as the company doing them. If the company performing the pre-shipment inspection is serving their own interest, instead of solely focusing on your company’s interests, the inspection results cannot be reliable.

2. Unclear expectations.

Part of your role as the hiring agency is to set clear expectations for the inspectors. It’s important to have a clear checklist or inspection strategy that outlines what the inspection company will look for.

Provide a sample of your product so that inspectors can see exactly what is acceptable to your company. Each company has its own standard for success. Plus, each set of product specifications can change. By providing a sample, you will be providing a clear understanding of exactly what success looks like for your company and this product line.

3. Failure to commit.

Implementing clear expectations and getting others to commit to your company’s standards can be difficult. A lack of “buy-in” can result in faulty sample sizes being inspected, incorrect specifications being followed, subpar quality, and payment for defective goods.

4. Lack of responsibility.

Who takes responsibility if the products ship with problems present? Suppliers will point to the pre-shipment inspection company, citing that they did not catch problems; and therefore, are responsible. Your inspection agency may not take responsibility either, which leaves only you to be responsible for the expensive backlash that may follow.

5. “Good enough” mindset

In developing countries such as China, inspection agencies may be complacent and have a “good enough” mindset where they benefit from subpar inspection standards that may be good enough for others, but not for your company.

Why Big Companies Need a Pre-Shipment Inspection?

Avoiding these common problems with pre-shipment inspection in China can mean the difference between having a profitable bottom line or product with costly mistakes that go unreported before shipment.

A pre-shipment inspection is your opportunity to correct mistakes before your product is completed and packed for shipping.

This is the time to make sure:

  • Orders were filled successfully (before shipping)
  • Quality is verified while products are still in production to avoid paying for defective goods
  • Your company’s standards are being followed

These assurances can lead to mitigate expensive importing risks, the number of products returned, and a tarnished brand image.

Tips for Avoiding Common Problems of Pre-Shipment Inspections in China

Since pre-shipment inspections are a critical step in the quality assurance process, you’ll want to hire a company that you have confidence in. Follow these tips for choosing your inspection company:

Tip#1: Look for companies that provide continuous training. Credible inspection companies have inspectors that are continually trained. This helps ensure that they are up-to-date on the latest standards.

Tip#2: Choose inspectors that are dedicated to your company’s interests.The inspection company that you hire should be 100% dedicated to working on behalf of your company’s interests. If there is any indication of self-interest, keep looking.

Tip#3: Select companies committed to following your standards. Checking products against your company’s standards is a must. Look for pre-shipment inspection companies that are committed to following your quality standards and standards of your destination market.

Tip #4: Hire for comprehensive inspections. Hire a company that is experienced in providing comprehensive inspections and inspects multiple facets of the product.

How QIMA Can Help

Hiring a credible third-party company for pre-shipment inspections of products being imported to China can make a big impact on your company’s profitability and brand image.

At QIMA, we are an independent, certified and licensed quality control company that works on your behalf.

We represent your company’s interests in the supply chain, and, as such, offer independent pre-shipping inspection services for the products you’re importing to China.

As a provider of comprehensive pre-shipment inspections, we cover criteria for product functionality, performance, durability, overall appearance, and dimensions.

Our inspectors can be onsite within 48 hours and provide same-day inspection reports.

Want to learn more about our pre-shipment inspection services?

Contact QIMA today