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The Risks of Outsourced Manufacturing: What You Need to Know

When you outsource your manufacturing, you’re trusting someone else to handle the job of turning your idea into a tangible product. While this usually works out well and can bring significant cost savings to your company, there are risks involved with outsourcing that you should keep in mind as you consider outsourcing as an option for your business or organization. Read on to learn about some of the most common risks of outsourcing manufacturing and how to avoid them so that you can maximize your benefits and minimize your costs.

Supplier Risk

Direct arrangements with suppliers from any industry come with risks. However, the risk is greater when buying from an international supplier. Prior to outsourcing, you must conduct a thorough investigation.

Then, you need to conduct a thorough risk assessment using the possible markets and suppliers. Identify any potential issues with the provider’s possible suppliers.

It must include the supplier’s operations, quality, leadership, and labor. Check to see if their track record lives up to their promises.

By doing so, you will avoid disruptions caused by your supplier failing to follow through. You can also ask other helpful businesses who have used your potential supplier. As soon as you make your decision, you’ll gain insight into working with them.

Quality Assurance

The lead time, as a result, for transporting products is longer compared to domestic sources, if product failure occurs from an international source, which can cost you suffer severe business disruptions.

If the problems get severe, it can take months to resolve them. To mitigate this risk, you need to prepare detailed product specifications for your sources. You’ll periodically perform independent quality control inspections.

You may lose your reputation if your product quality declines. Avoid this by observing the manufacturing process for a few weeks. It is cheaper and ensures quality, so it’s better than having to recall a product.

Intellectual Property Protection

Don’t share sensitive information with your outsourced manufacturers until you check their origin country and their intellectual property rights. Otherwise, your proprietary information might be leaked.

In cases like this, IP laws are more relaxed in the manufacturer’s country. Depending on the product, you may find it better not to outsource anything. If your product undergoes regular updates, however, this might not be an issue.

You might overlook patent protection if you think you can produce better items faster and with better quality. This can happen when you pump out new products faster than the market can handle.

Transportation and Delivery

Outsourcing to a foreign service is tricky if you don’t take it one step at a time. If you do it poorly, the delivery will be delayed.

A common timeline for ordering and receiving your product should be important to your outsourced manufacturer. Think about whether they can meet a timeline for production. In case the total is greater than it has been, you must work to make the customer’s expectations fit reality.

One may also look for a workaround to restore the time to its correct place. Otherwise, you may accidentally erase all your work. Given the importance of this issue to customers, we’ll need to keep it at the forefront of our priorities.

Sourcing Labor

This type of conversation doesn’t happen as often, but when it does, it can hurt your brand. Make and fulfill your products with a manufacturer that follows humane standards.

It is especially important when it comes to labor laws and other relevant guidelines for employee safety that your manufacturer’s guidelines match your own country’s. It is your responsibility as well as your outsourced help to adhere to ILO guidelines if your country is a member.


Despite how it might seem, what your manufacturer does in relation to the weather can affect how it’s perceived. A rough bout of weather can lead to various delays. Doing so puts your brand in a negative spotlight because it has to be revealed what your labour force looks like.

How well your supply chain holds up to weather-related crises can affect your reputation, as well. Though they’re flawed, it’s not always best to steer clear of your brand name. As a result, you must put it before anything else.

Should You Outsource Manufacturing?

If your company is not ready for outsourcing, you should weigh the benefits of this decision. A number of benefits are available to you.

You will cut your spending as well as boost the productivity of your business by doing so. Popular demands are produced by many companies.

Additionally, you’ll avoid every aspect of manufacturing bureaucracy. It’s what slows businesses down, especially in countries with strict regulations.

Invest in Outsourced Manufacturing Today

While there are risks involved, partnering with an outsourcing manufacturing company can be helpful in boosting your business productivity. The first step is to find a reputable manufacturer. Use this advice to find the best provider.

Have you been considering manufacturing internationally? If so, please get in touch with Shield Works and we’ll talk about how our 17 years of outsourced manufacturing can help your business thrive!