How to build a supplier network in China

  • April 17, 2022

In today's globalized business landscape, China stands out as a major player in international trade and manufacturing. For businesses around the world who increasingly turn to China as a sourcing hub for products, understanding both the Chinese language and culture adds high value.

Most problems that occur when importing from China are caused by bad communication and cultural misunderstandings.

In this article, you will learn how to avoid these issues.    

Avoid misunderstandings

To prevent communication issues and cultural confusion you can either learn about the norms and procedures and acquaint yourself with the language. Or you can hire a local person. 

The first option, learning everything yourself, gives you the opportunity to be in control of every single element. This requires a lot of resources, because learning about a new language, culture, and an entire industry is a complex and difficult process.

The second option, hiring a local, still involves a lot of research. Like any other employment, selecting the best-suited staff member can be difficult, but at the same time most important. When you find the right employee, it will become easier to find trustworthy suppliers and build relationships with them. You will not have to waste time on problems and mistakes in a long learning process.

Example: What can a local employee offer? 

Our International Sourcing Manager in China is your link to the Chinese suppliers.
Chris facilitates all communication between you as a customer and our intricate network of Chinese suppliers. He handles:

-    Quotations of new projects 
-    Follow-ups on existing project
-    First article inspections
-    Different quality control tasks

Chris is your guarantee that your product will be manufactured according to work instructions and quality requirements. He stays close to our suppliers, making it possible to quickly handle any communication, product, and manufacturing issues. 

Lastly, he plays a big role in broadening and strengthening our supplier network. This strong network is a key factor in our services, making it possible to offer competitive prices as well as high quality.

Know the culture if you want success

There is a big difference between Western and Chinese culture. The more important it is to be familiar with the norms and customs before getting started. 

One big difference is how fast you can do business. Read this case of a supply chain manager who pushed too hard and ended up without a deal.


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