Quality control in China refers to what your business does to ensure that your products are manufactured as requested, without defects, and are safe to use by consumers. Quality control often involves several kinds of audits, some of which include:
- Supplier audits: Supplier audits are performed to ensure that a potential supplier is who they say they are, as well as making sure they have the manufacturing capabilities they advertise. Supplier audits are meant to weed out scammers and low-quality suppliers that should always be avoided.
- Factory audits: Factory audits are conducted to get a detailed view of what a factory's manufacturing capabilities are. This will be important if you are sourcing complex products that require special manufacturing.
- Social audits: Unlike other quality control audits, a social audit will determine if a potential supplier meets your ethical standards as a business partner. This may include how they treat their labor force, where they source their materials, or the environmental impacts of their manufacturing process.
These audits often occur before production begins. There are other audits that are part of quality control that will happen during product, which include:
- Initial Production Check (IPC): The IPC begins before mass production starts and lasts until about a fifth of your order is complete. During the IPC, machinery, raw materials, and factory processes are scrutinized to ensure that your products are made to meet your standards.
- During Production Check (DUPRO): The DUPRO begins close to when the IPC ends, and lasts until the majority of your products have been manufactured and packaged. DUPRO involves randomly taking products off the production line for inspection during various stages of the manufacturing process. If system issues are found, production can be halted.
- Pre-Shipment Inspection (PSI): The PSI begins close to when the DUPRO ends. During the PSI, fully manufactured products are inspected for any potential quality issues before products are packaged for shipment. Defective products are removed from batches during this step.
Container Loading Check (CLC): Finally, the CLC is conducted as products are loaded onto sea freight containers and ensures that only products that meet your quality standards are shipped.