Quality inspection will never be a perfect task. There are lots of factors present, and human intervention will always cause some problems in one way or another. However, it is still a very necessary step to take to ensure that all products generated will be of sound quality that is usable for customers and sellable for business owners.
When corruption exists in the quality assurance department, tons of problems can pile and stack up with each other. In any case, such issues should never occur in any company or factory since they will cause great harm to both sides.
To give you an idea of how Chinese factory inspectors might be doing some magic in their assessments, we have created this short guide.
Disadvantages of Corrupt Inspections
If we were to enumerate every disadvantage that improper quality inspections result in, it will be an endless list. Thus, we summarized them into two main points that you should always take note of.
Corrupt inspections will always result in loss of profit and sales. Why does this happen? Well, the answer is simple. Bad quality assurance is highly related to defective and low-quality products. This alone can decrease the sellability of goods, and result in negative growth in your company. Furthermore, additional expenses might be needed since remaking or redoing the products will occur.
Customer retainment is an often-neglected part of business, but bad quality inspection drastically decreases its value. This can also be considered as the reputation of your business in terms of potential buyers. Once broken goods are received, there will be many instances of Return to Seller (RTS) and even Refund events. If you want to take good care of your audience and customer, there is a great need to confirm that the products manufactured by your chosen
Main Ways that Inspectors Can Cheat
The main ways that inspectors might use corrupt quality assurance are divided into three parts: the before, during, and after. Let us take a look at some of them.
- Raw materials. Manipulation of raw materials is one way that inspectors can trick unsuspecting business owners into thinking that the quality of the goods is great. For example, they can note that copper conductors are used in a mass-produced cable while copper-coated silver conductors are utilized. If you were not aware of such changes, you might put great trust in the product that you will receive and sell but end up receiving tons of complaints from your customers. This should always be avoided at all costs since raw materials serve as the building blocks of all the products that you will offer to your clients.
- Machinery and Manpower Used. Another thing that they can do is lie about the machinery and manpower or labor quantities. They might say that 200 people participated in the whole making and assembly process, when in fact, only 75 are present. This can even be grounds for unfair labor conditions on the workers and assemblymen. For machinery, corrupt inspectors might replace the version of large gadgets used for assembly with newer ones even if they are not updated. This can hinder the overall quality of the product without you even noticing it.
- Cut Processes. During the inspection, inspectors can even choose to skip processes that they think will affect the overall result of the product. What is terrifying is that they might just look at the end-product without checking the specifics of how it was built. This will be a very alarming issue that will affect the overall sales of the buyer (a.k.a. you).
- Ensuring that the product is in line with the overall design is essential in any quality assurance process. Without this, there will be no proper reference on the standard goods that need to be produced. A corrupt inspector can choose to modify the As-built design to fit the defective goods into ready-to-be-shipped ones. This will result in great variances and differences between the different products which should not be the case. For example, doll A might have longer hair than doll B even if they come from the same manufacturing process. In the long run, this will affect customer subscription and trust.
- Internal Control (Higher-up). Another way for the inspectors to cheat during quality assurance is direct contact with internal officers of the company. They can negotiate with each other to ensure that even if a certain batch does not qualify, it can still be considered satisfactory and ready to be delivered. Once this happens, you have engaged with a factory that has rotten systems and processes. It is always better to have a very transparent and honest Chinese factory, not a fraud-centered one.
- Checklist Manipulation. Many quality assurance officers rely on a checklist for their process. Checklists contain major parts of a product or system that must meet specified requirements. When such checklists are manipulated as a result of corruption, a myriad of the issue follows. For example, a checklist might say that 2 cm is needed as a gap, and an inspector who is aware that the batch will not satisfy the conditions will still tick the box on the list. Nevertheless, this will lead to a series of unwanted events that will harm your business.
- Sudden Audits. Audit dates are always specified and agreed upon by governing bodies. If ever you notice that the inspection period and duration are not consistent, then there is a good chance that the quality assurance phase is being faked and fabricated. In any case, you should prevent engaging with a company that does this, as you will lose tons of possible profit in the process.
- Defect redelivery. This is one of the most sinister ways that an inspector might cheat on you. Those that are marked as defects by the quality assurance phase can still be redelivered as long as corrupt inspectors are present during the reentry of such goods. Thus, your “good” batch will be mixed with very defective ones, and your customers will always demand a refund or return for what they have received. Once this has already happened, there is no chance of turning back since your customers will always think that you have scammed them.
- Fake certificates. Certificates are created as documents that prove that a batch has passed all required standards and quality control procedures. Even if this document is very important and can make or break the whole delivery, it can still be manipulated in such a way that even defective products will still have certificates. This can make the whole thing complicated since if you request an exchange of goods, the corrupt factory can just say that the whole batch has certificates, and it is your fault that they have been tarnished.
How to ensure that your inspections are corruption-free
One way to assure that your quality assurance phase is clean and free of any manipulation is to ask for the actual software data of the quality control process. This data is raw and unfiltered, meaning that you can check the results by yourself. Not only that, but automated software also generates quality metrics that are hard to be infiltrated by human intervention since machines work on them. Thus, there is a great chance that you will have properly checked products.
Creating your very own checklist that has similar attributes to your factory can also be beneficial since it will ensure that you can self-assured the condition of the goods. If you observe that some data are not in line with yours and theirs, you can file a complaint since you have the evidence to support your claim based on your findings.
A great way to deal with cheater inspectors is to do sufficient background research and checks on your chosen factory. This way, you will know if they engage with shady deals or not and might even avoid them in the future. However, this is not an easy task especially if you are overseas since the information that you will receive will never be sufficient. In such cases, it might be a good idea to seek help from experts in the industry of Chinese factories, since they know what to watch out for and not.
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