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Is hiring a China purchasing agent profitable to imports from China?

Cynthia Jun 04, 2018 Reading length : 7 min
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Global trends show us that importers and buyers all over the world have been working hard over the past years to implement direct sourcing strategies. This strategy is often easily justified by the savings generated through direct sourcing. But cutting out intermediaries usually results in an increase in workload for foreign teams of buyers.

Is hiring a China purchasing agent still relevant with the current communication tools, globalization of international business practices, and current challenges that China is facing? There is no definite YES or NO answer. It mostly depends on one’s business strategy, resources and priorities. But the following points will identify the upsides and savings generated when dealing with a purchasing agent in China.

china purchasing agent balances cost and efficiency

I / A China purchasing agent improves efficiency

+ Save big on buying from China

china supplier network
Industrial District in China – where purchasing agents frequently travel to audit factories.

Operating in the same country as vendors, a China Purchasing Agent gathers comprehensive intelligence about how to build or enhance supply chains, dispersed sourcing in China.

Access and intensive use of huge supplier databases and networks, whether they are global or local, through their purchasing agent is a great asset for conducting fact and accurate sourcing of Chinese manufacturers .

When ordering with suppliers spread across the country, consolidating shipments, making the right choice of warehousing location may generate significant cost and time savings.

+ Understanding what lays behind the screen is key to success in China

Like any other businesses on the planet, Chinese factories and vendors put a lot of effort into convincing prospective buyers to deal with them. But when it comes to assessing vendor’s strengths and weaknesses, smoke screens or half-truths may create unexpected delays later on.

Well-established purchasing agents have their own filtering systems in place to identify inconsistencies or even non-truths early in the process of sourcing in China.

+ Faster access to information helps beat competition

A China Purchasing Agent employs professionals from the Sourcing and Procurement industry who are proficient in English and other languages. Moreover, they accurately articulate potential opportunities, gains, pitfalls, and limitations with a more proactive attitude.

Communication efficiency generates time savings as well as minimizes risks. As each order in China may include complex setups, multiple vendors, and references, the gain in clarity and efficiency directly creates value.

II/ Well-managed purchasing in China boosts growth

+ Right sources + Right Processes = long-term success

A Purchasing Agent in China not only brings skills and work power to your team but also a fresh look at a business’s supply chain in China. Purchasing specialists’ experience and commitment to build and enhance supply chains that utilize the right vendors, processes, and safeguards are a great asset to ensure long-term growth.

purchasing agent in china sees supply chain opportunities

+ Consolidating Information & Goods

consolidate goods to fcl in china

Another direct positive effect of dealing through a China Purchasing Agent is that the information is consolidated in one place, and usually passed on between a few people who learn to achieve efficiency in their day-to-day interactions.
Consolidation of goods is another advantage that generates savings. Projects involving multiple China suppliers and delivery points are more complex to process. Seasoned china purchasing agents can solve a lot of headaches when it comes to shipping from China, schedules, processing Commercial Invoices, Packing Lists, …

+ Balancing risks with opportunties when buying from China

Purchasing is not all about cost, savings, and efficiency. A big part of a purchasing company’s operations is to evaluate, set up, and enforce safety and quality standards. This part of the job may create obstacles to cost or time savings, but they take into account the risk of dealing with Chinese suppliers out of the buyer’s reach.
However, audit and quality control in china can generate profitable outputs such as help sales in decreasing the need for after-sale, decrease in defects rate, product features enhancement, and such.

While hiring a purchasing agent in China may be debatable depending on the business needs, organizational, and development strategy, the reason why so many buyers are dealing with Purchasing Specialists is that they bring efficiency and participate in generating growth.

Some foreign businesses may need to dig deeper to find the right factories, the right product. An agent is well-positioned and located to boost the performance of your sourcing in China. Some foreign businesses may need to move volumes through borders. A purchasing company will help by handling the complexities of consolidation and shipping from china.