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Reasons the China Manufacturing Boom Is Actually Good

China produces over 28% of the world’s manufacturing. Because of the China manufacturing boom, it’s not surprising that China’s gotten the nickname “the world’s factory.”

But why is there an increase in China manufacturing? How can it benefit your business? And how has the COVID-19 pandemic affected global relations?

Read this guide to find out everything you want to know about the China manufacturing market and why it’s actually good for your business. 

What’s Driving the China Manufacturing Boom?

There are several factors that contribute to the boom in China manufacturing.

For most people, the lower cost of labor is probably the first factor they’d consider. There are lower wages in China. This makes manufacturing much cheaper.

China is the most populous country in the world. This means there are more workers than jobs. That keeps the cost of labor relatively low.

However, certain provinces have begun enacting more laws to protect workers. This includes installing minimum wages throughout the country.

Manufacturing is still cheaper when outsourced to Chinese factories. But, the cost of production isn’t the only consideration you should take into account.

The Chinese-U.S. Business Ecosystem

Manufacturing isn’t the only part of industrial production one must consider. In fact, there is a large network to consider that includes:

  • Suppliers
  • Distributors
  • Government agencies
  • Customers

American companies such as Apple utilize China’s efficient supply chain. This efficiency helps them to keep costs down and margins high. 

Most U.S. companies operating in China find it unrealistic economically to complete productions on U.S. soil. 

Additionally, business relations remain strong between the U.S. and China. Though political tensions may be high, many businesses feel confident in their Chinese manufacturing relationships. 

In fact, this is the most confidence many businesses have felt since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lower Compliance Standards

Product assembly in China does not have to meet certain guidelines American businesses must follow. For example, China is much more relaxed about the following standards:

  • Involuntary and child labor
  • Health and Safety Guidelines
  • Wage laws
  • Environmental protection laws

Though labor laws are changing in China, they are still far less strict than in the United States. This helps to save on labor costs.

Chinese factories also save on waste management. This is because environmental protection laws are not strictly enforced. 

Savings on Taxes and Duties

In 1985, China enacted the export tax rebate policy. This policy abolished double taxation on exported goods. This was responsible for making Chinese manufacturing much more attractive to potential investors.

Exported goods in China are subject to 0% value-added tax (VAT). That means these products are exempt from VATs. 

Chinese products are also exempt from import taxes. This keeps production costs low, which attracts more investors.

International Expansion

China is a massive pillar in the Asian market. The Asian market in general is growing at an extremely rapid rate. 

Doing business in China helps to expand your reach to these valuable Asian markets. 

These expansions can multiply your company’s business opportunities exponentially. You also streamline your ability to introduce products into markets across Asia, especially Chinese markets. 

How Did COVID-19 Affect Chinese Manufacturing?

It’s no surprise that the COVID-19 pandemic affected the boom of Chinese manufacturing. China was, after all, the first country to experience the effects of the pandemic.

It is common practice for Chinese businesses to take a week off for Lunar New Year celebrations. In 2020, this break was extended. This was China’s attempt to stop the spread of COVID.

Unfortunately, like many American businesses, Chinese businesses experienced delays in production. Many workers became sick, slowing down manufacturing. 

Additionally, issues in the global supply chain created fear around reliance on outsourced manufacturing. This included Chinese manufacturing.

Chinese Recovery in a Post-COVID Economy 

However, Chinese factories continued on. Many of them capitalized on mask production to keep them operating throughout COVID. 

Now, it appears that China’s manufacturing is on the come-up. However, since the roughest days of the pandemic, it would appear China has made a full recovery. 

How Did the US-China Trade War Affect Chinese Manufacturing? 

While in office, US President Donald Trump attempted to decouple the Chinese and US economies. This created a trade war that affected, and still affects, the manufacturing industry. 

However, an annual member survey by the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai revealed that 92.1% of its members had no plans to leave China. 

Even with Trump’s push, leaving Chinese manufacturing was not an attractive prospect to many companies. Most of these companies have revenues above $500 million USD. 

How Is China Upgrading Its Manufacturing Industry?

The Chinese government’s goal is to have 30% of its gross domestic product (GDP) come from new industries. So what are they doing to meet this goal?

By 2025, China plans to have strong innovation in its manufacturing industry. They expect to use these innovations to drive high-quality growth. 

Some manufacturing innovations China is currently working on include:

  • Sharing production facilities
  • Sharing tools and equipment amongst facilities
  • Making intellectual resources such as designs and development practices public use

Their goal is to use this plan to boost resource allocation. This will help to improve efficiency and drive higher ROIs for business manufacturing in China. 

Take Advantage of the Chinese Manufacturing Boom

So, you can see how Chinese manufacturing is a valuable market for American businesses.

The factors driving the China manufacturing boom can help to lower costs and boost your ROIs so that your business sees significant returns. Plus, you can streamline your business for introduction into the up-and-coming Asian markets.

Contact our team if you’re ready to begin manufacturing in China. With Shield Works, you can rest easy knowing you’re making the right choice for your business’s manufacturing needs. 

3PL Service Can Help Boost Your Amazon Business

3PL service can be a valuable tool to help your Amazon business grow and get where you want it to be. But why use 3PL service? What are the benefits of working with 3PLs? How can they help with your Amazon business? Those are all excellent questions, so let’s take some time to go over them in detail.

What is a 3PL Service?

You may be familiar with 3PL services already. A third-party logistics (3PL) company is a business or other entity that handles storage, transportation, sorting and delivery of goods on behalf of a retailer. The U.S. has more than 6,000 3PLs, according to American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA). Amazon itself is often cited as one example of a company that uses 3PL service for its ecommerce sales via Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). In fact, many online retailers use 3PL services because they’re so convenient: They can offload some or all shipping responsibilities from their own staffs to experienced professionals who have access to resources like trucks, warehouses and sophisticated software. That leaves your small business free to focus on what it does best—selling products—while you outsource what you don’t need in order to grow faster.

With more and more businesses outsourcing their manufacturing overseas, 3PL service in other countries are also in high demand, especially in China. These companies can help your business save money by providing a single point of contact for all your global logistics needs. Many of these firms have experience dealing with multiple languages and cultures, so they can communicate directly with suppliers in foreign countries to ensure that your products arrive on time and as expected. This is particularly helpful if you’re new to importing or exporting goods from overseas: You can leave most of the work to them while you focus on growing your company’s sales revenue.

Why Do I Need it as an Amazon Seller?

More importantly, what are your options for managing third-party fulfillment? One option is to do it all in-house, but that can be difficult if you’re trying to run a business. In addition, it might make more sense from a brand management perspective to use outside vendors with established reputations. For example, Shield Works offers 3PL (third-party logistics) services that allow Amazon sellers to leverage its warehousing infrastructure and expertise on their behalf. This allows Amazon sellers like you to focus on brand development instead of worrying about operational details. 

What’s more, it provides peace of mind by helping ensure inventory doesn’t sit idle or get lost. There are many ways to approach your online sales efforts—and no one way is better than another—but shipping and fulfillment may be one area where working with an expert makes sense.

What Should You Look For In A 3PL Service Provider?

The following are some things you should consider when evaluating a 3PL service:

Global reach

Choose a provider with locations around the world so you can reach customers in multiple time zones. Comprehensive set of transportation options. You’ll want access to air, ocean, trucking and rail services so you can choose whichever mode is most cost-effective for each shipment.

Transparent rates and fees

Look for providers that charge per package or weight based on total volume rather than as a percentage of total value. This will allow you to price your products competitively without surprises at checkout from additional fees. Recurring transport scheduling/management capabilities.

Real-Time Tracking

Want to know where your shipments are at all times? 3PLs that offer real-time tracking can help ensure you’re meeting customer service standards. Check out the system they use and do some research on how it works and it’ll give you an idea how your goods will be handled.

Automated import/export services

For example, if you need assistance calculating how much duty you will owe on a shipment to Europe, a provider with an automated system can save you valuable time and eliminate errors.

Customized shipping solutions

A provider that offers these services will help you ship products directly from China or other overseas locations to your customers in North America and Europe at competitive rates. This is particularly helpful when importing large volumes of goods from China as it allows you to take advantage of bulk discounts on shipping charges by consolidating multiple packages into one larger shipment that arrives at its destination faster than individual shipments would have arrived.

Multiple package-shipping options (e.g., small, medium or large boxes).

A 3PL service provider should offer multiple box sizes so that you can choose which size best fits your product’s needs and reduce packaging costs accordingly.

Questions to Ask Before Hiring A 3PL Logistics Company

Choosing a 3PL service to transport your inventory can seem daunting. The Amazon marketplace is full of shipping companies claiming to offer inexpensive, efficient and reliable shipping services for sellers. As with any decision you make regarding your business, it’s important to take time before selecting a company that will handle your shipments. If you’re thinking about hiring a 3PL logistics company, ask yourself these questions first:

  1. How do they communicate?
  2. Is their response time reasonable?
  3. Does anyone actually pick up their phone when you call?
  4. What is their process for handling shipments?
  5. How can I access information about my shipment?
  6. How are customs forms handled?
  7. What happens if my shipment gets seized by customs or delayed by weather or other factors outside of my shipper’s control?

As we wrap up, there are two things you should remember: first, 3PL’s can be a great asset to your Amazon business. By working with a reliable and trustworthy service provider, you can save time and resources on everything from picking and packaging to shipping and order fulfillment. The second thing is just as important: choose a provider that meets all of your specific needs. The best 3PL will have industry expertise (especially in terms of handling products), but will also make it easy for you to monitor shipments and control inventory without missing out on profit potential. Whether you’re just starting out or expanding an existing operation, pay attention to each of these tips when selecting a new supplier partner!

Shield Works is one of your ideal options with our western background and 17-year industry experience. We have helped so many launch their Amazon business with our logistics service in both the US and China. Reach out to us and learn more about how we can help!

Electronic Contract Manufacturers In China: What To Know

Electronic contract manufacturing services play an important role in the electronics industry.

However, choosing a reliable electronic contract manufacturer in China can be daunting; with over 30,000 manufacturers listed on Alibaba alone, it’s hard to know which one is truly capable of handling your project.

If you are looking to build an electronics business from the ground up, knowing what to look for in an EMS manufacturer can save you time and money in the long run. Here are some tips to help you choose the right electronic contract manufacturer for your business.

What is Electronic Contract Manufacturing?

Electronic contract manufacturing (ECM), also known as EMS (electronic manufacturing service), refers to a variety of manufacturing services that mainly focus on the electronic industry.

The services include engineering design, PCB fabrication, subassembly manufacturing, turnkey or box builds, functional testing, distribution and order fulfilment.

It allows you to outsource the production of your electrical products to EMS providers instead of setting up your internal assembly line, allowing you to focus on designing and marketing your product.

Electronic contract manufacturing may be utilized as either a supplement to or as a replacement for company-owned manufacturing operations. However, choosing an EMS can be tricky. So you must make sure they have an adequate amount of experience with your particular industry and type of product.

What Should You Consider?

There are lots of players offering EMS and electronics manufacturing services today. That’s why you need to compare them to get what is right for your business.

When choosing an EMS manufacturer, your primary considerations should be quality and cost.

Quality is always important. It’s especially critical when dealing with electronics because any mistake made in production could end up making your product unusable or even dangerous.

If you have a consumer-focused product and are planning on selling tens of thousands of units, quality is likely more important than price.

It’s also important that your EMS partner is capable of keeping up with production demands and able to handle customization requests to meet their lead time and standard requirements. An experienced EMS provider will be able to assist you in developing these capabilities throughout their supply chain.

What Do They Offer?

Find out if the electronic contract manufacturing company in China has a wide variety of experience in your product category and find out what certifications they have.

Not only will it help them be an expert on your product, but it will also reassure you that they’re capable of doing what you need to. This is especially important if your business involves developing products or if you’re working with new technology.

Additionally, an electronic manufacturing service company likely provides several levels of service. However, for each level of service, there are some ways in which they can vary in providing it.

Different EMS providers may have different capabilities. A key factor in determining how well an EMS provider will meet your needs is understanding what they do and what they don’t do. Generally speaking, EMS providers will offer at least one of three basic levels of manufacturing services: design service, fabrication service or a combination thereof.

Benefits of Electronic Contract Manufacturers In China

There are several reasons why you should use electronic contract manufacturers in China, instead of manufacturing your products.

First and foremost, it will save you money. PCB assembly can cost anywhere from $0.50 – $1.00 per unit in China while it costs more than 10 times that amount in North America or Europe. Offshore manufacturers also allow businesses to save money by providing bulk orders that could be too costly otherwise.

Second, it’s a good way to speed up your time to market by using their long-term experience. A well-established EMS manufacturer can help design and produce a finished product from scratch within months. In this case, you don’t have to build your in-house engineering and design team to create whatever you want.

In addition, outsourcing your electronics production enables you to focus on core competencies that make your business profitable; no need to invest in expensive equipment or struggle with issues such as sourcing parts overseas.

Last but not least, some ECM companies in China offer more services than others—from design to production and shipment—which means that you don’t have to hire additional staff members or pay extra fees.

How To Choose An Electronic Contract Manufacturer?

Working with a Chinese EMS can save you money, but it’s important to remember that Chinese EMSs are not all created equal. Do your research and ensure that any suppliers you choose are legitimate and reliable.

You should choose a manufacturer with top-notch capabilities, great communication skills and a good reputation to guarantee your product will be a success.

When you want to partner with an electronic contract manufacturing company in China, come to Shield Works. Our experienced team helps to keep your project moving smoothly and efficiently. With our British management background and long-term manufacturing experience, we firmly believe in our proven process and expertise. We take the responsibility of protecting you from all manufacturing defects.  Contact us to discuss your project today!

The Future of OEM Manufacturing

COVID-19 affected many people’s lives physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially. This also affected several different businesses, causing them to halt their production. Fortunately, even though the pandemic still lingers, there are many OEM manufacturing companies that can still meet the demands and needs of many customers.

If you’ve ever considered working with an OEM manufacturing company, but you aren’t sure how that relationship will look due to the market’s changing trends, you aren’t alone. Many different companies are turning to OEMs to help with their production needs to keep up with product quality demands. If you want to learn more about OEM companies and how they can benefit your company in today’s changing landscape, continue reading below. 

What Is OEM?

An Original Equipment Manufacturer, also known as OEM, is a company that produces and sells parts of a product or products for a particular company. That company then takes those parts of a product or complete product and sells it to their clients. OEMs commonly operate in the computer and auto industries. 

An original equipment manufacturer often works directly with a retail company. For example, Lenovo’s computer parts aren’t all manufactured by Lenovo themselves. Instead, Lenovo utilizes a manufacturing company to create their processors. 

Examples of OEM

To better explain how an original equipment manufacturer works, let’s use Company D as an example. Company D manufacturers several different versions of a memory card to sell to various computer manufacturers or retailers, like Lenovo or Dell. Those companies are considered value-added resellers who will sell their version of the product to their clients. 

OEM vs. Value-Added Reseller

Value-added resellers, also known as VARs, sell products from the OEM, but they also incorporate certain added features before doing so. The two companies benefit from one another because VARs help original equipment manufacturers sell their products. 

OEM vs. Aftermarket

While an OEM produces original equipment, an aftermarket manufacturer creates products that are made to look like and work with those of an OEM. To simplify, aftermarket parts or products are not original because different companies manufacture them.

Some of these aftermarket companies are locally based, whereas others are foreign-based. Although these parts are cheaper, they don’t have the same guarantees that an OEM part or product would. 

How to Make Aftermarket Parts

As we all know, as time passes and technology advances, well-known auto companies, and technology companies release updated versions of their products. Most auto companies update their vehicles at least once every six years, and phone manufacturing companies change almost every year or two. So what happens to those old models and machines used to create those products? 

These companies sell them. Many manufacturers purchase those old molds and models to create similar products to market. 

Example of Aftermarket Products

You commonly see aftermarket parts in the auto industry. Auto shops and insurance companies prefer to use aftermarket parts over OEM parts whenever someone gets into an auto accident and needs their vehicle fixed. This is because aftermarket products are cheaper to manufacture and purchase. 

Characteristics of an OEM

If you want to know if a company is an original equipment manufacturer, there are a few characteristics to look out for. For example, OEMs sell licenses which means they typically sell their product licenses to the resellers they market to.

Hardware

You can easily purchase hardware off the internet through an OEM or a retail product manufacturer. However, the OEM hardware typically is shipped without cables or adapters necessary for the installation and operation of said hardware. 

Software

OEM software isn’t very common, but there are OEM software products. Some of the OEM software products created are versions of Windows productivity software, operating system, and security applications. This licensed software typically does not come with technical support, but it is instead provided with basic documentation and a few logos. 

Most of these products are created for specific machines. For example, an OEM Windows system for an HP computer won’t operate the same on Dell or Lenovo. Even more so, that certain software may work for one specific HP model, but it won’t perform the same on other models. 

Benefits of Original Equipment Manufacturers

There are several different benefits of using an OEM manufacturers in china. For example, when working with an OEM, you can expect a quick response time because less time is required to identify and produce the parts you need. Most manufacturers you work with like to have their products assembled and sent to you within a timely manner. 

Quality

When replacing a part on a machine or a vehicle, you will want to have the utmost confidence that the replacement part is the same, if not better, than what was there before. The only way to secure this confidence is to use an OEM. When using an OEM manufacturing company, they will ensure that your products or parts of a product are created and tested to match your original specification. 

Support

When approaching OEM support engineers, you will want to be reassured that those engineers have access to the same engineering team that designed your products or parts. Most, if not all, OEM support engineers do have that access, which will provide you with a wide variety of engineering and technical support. OEM staff members are pretty knowledgeable, and they can help you with all your part needs.

Value and Lifespan

When replacing parts in your products or machines, you expect that you will continue to get the same performance you had before needing the replacement. Buying from an OEM manufacturing company ensures that your replacement part will have that same quality, and there will be no degradation in performance. 

Warranty

Having a warranty is one of the most important benefits when working with any OEM manufacturer. Should your company receive your parts with any defects, or if the parts are faulty, you can always reach out to your OEM. They will make sure to make it right so that you aren’t stuck with unusable products. 

High Return on Investments

Since the parts your OEM supplies are designed to perform and fit factory specifications, these parts increase the life of your product. In the long run, this can save your business a lot of money and help reduce downtime. 

Current OEM Trends

The relationship between OEM companies, dealerships, and other companies has always been healthy and symbiotic. Most OEMs depend on their networks to sell and service their products.

On the other hand, these companies have fallen back on OEMs to provide specific components or parts. In the auto industry, original equipment manufacturers also have the task of financing their servicing activities while the cars are covered under warranty. 

Updates to the Market

Most OEM companies are now working towards creating remote software upgrades and establishing direct relationships with their clients with subscription models. With that said, this means that OEMs are taking ownership of customer relations which usually falls back on the dealers, or as you now know, VARs. 

The dealers still get a significant portion of profits from after-sales and services. Activities like new car sales or new product sales can also create a profit, but the margin is relatively small. 

What Does This Changing Landscape Mean?

Consumer demands of the auto industry are changing. Apart from the shift in needing or wanting more electric vehicles, cars are now viewed as a part of a shared mobility service. Models of car ownership are changing as well, meaning that customers now view their cars like smartphones. These clients expect their vehicles to be updated and refuse to pay a premium for a service that offers benefits down the line. 

OEMs are currently working on creating capabilities that reduce cost due to connected diagnostics, predictive maintenance, and over-the-air software updates. They are also seizing more opportunities for direct relationships with consumers, such as creating innovative techniques to sell cars. 

Customer Trends and the Marketplace

As technology continues to advance and the way we work and live continues to change, customers are doing things more online. To support dealerships, OEM manufacturing companies have to consider the value they add.

As mentioned earlier, OEMs are set to take greater ownership of customer relationships, but they should provide additional support to dealerships to ensure they don’t just disappear altogether. 

To help with this, OEMs can incentivize dealerships to drive traffic to online showrooms, or they can reward dealerships for high brand engagement. 

How to Find an OEM Manufacturer

When looking for an OEM, you will want to ensure that they have experience making products similar to yours. For example, an OEM who specializes in computer parts may not have the same capabilities for creating auto parts. You also must consider if you want to use a factory in the United States or overseas. Most OEMs who have better capabilities are overseas, not in the United States. 

Domestic vs. Overseas

Manufacturing in the United States has its benefits, but it also comes with a few disadvantages. With an OEM in the U.S., you have more control over production; you can also visit the site regularly and avoid dealing with international shipping logistics.

Although that may sound ideal, you will most likely have to pay more for parts and labor. With overseas manufacturing, you still have a say in your product specification, but the cost to the manufacturer is much cheaper. 

Even though dealing with international shipping logistics may sound like a headache, it won’t be when you partner with the right company. They will make sure to have a dedicated contact who can speak your language and explain the entire process to you. 

Review Their Certifications

Not all manufacturers in China are the same, nor do they have the same qualifications. No matter how well-established the plant is, there is a possibility that they don’t have the necessary licenses or certifications

To ensure that your manufacturer creates your product in compliance with regulatory standards, make sure that your supplier has the proper licenses and certifications to assemble your product. 

Common ISO certifications manufacturers should have:

Each industry has its own certifications, so each manufacturer needs to have the same certificates and documents to ensure they produce high-quality products. Before working with a specific manufacturer, make sure that you check the required materials for assembling.

Capacity

The last thing you want is to work with a manufacturer who doesn’t have the capacity to manufacture your parts or products. You wouldn’t want to send your money and products to a company just for your products to be stuck on a shelf awaiting their assembly.

To ensure that you don’t get stuck with a company that doesn’t assemble or manufacture your products as fast as you need, make sure you check in with your manufacturer’s production space. The OEM should provide you with information about their current output rate and deadlines. 

Produce High-Quality Products

Partnering with a reputable OEM manufacturing company is critical to make sure that your business meets the demands of your clients and ensures long-lasting performance and high-quality products. Working with a reputable OEM manufacturing company is more than just finding someone reputable and knowledgeable; it is about creating a stable relationship.

You want to make sure that the company you work with values you and your business just as you do. Contact us now if you are ready to create a lasting relationship with an OEM manufacturing company overseas. Our team is prepared to answer any questions or concerns you have about our future partnership. 

Contract Manufacturing in China: 5 Ways To Mitigate Costs

For the past decades, manufacturing in China was a rather inexpensive process. Many overseas companies have outsourced their production to China.

But now, China has hiked up their production costs because of major and minor changes in its policies and regulations.

Overseas businesses should keep costs low to remain competitive in the market. That’s why we’ve collected this list of five ways for you to reduce your costs by using contract manufacturing in China. Let’s get started!

Costs Are Rising, But…

Despite these headwinds of rising costs, China’s manufacturing future remains bright and you shouldn’t miss out on the benefits.

While the country is losing its edge in some labor-intensive sectors, it is gaining strength by building more modern infrastructures and hiring more talents at home and abroad.

A quick look around Shenzhen tells you this is a different type of China. It’s a place that doesn’t need to be cheaper than anywhere else because it’s better than anywhere else. In this factory city, no one is thinking about cutting corners and doing things cheaply to compete with other countries. Instead, everyone is thinking about how to innovate and be more productive than any other country in the world.

Manufacturing costs may be higher, but you can get better quality products and customized services and support. In this regard, you can save your company a lot of money, time, and hassle.

Conduct A Manufacturing Cost Estimation

There are many things that you should be aware of before outsourcing manufacturing operations in China, conducting A manufacturing cost estimation is the main one.

As you know, overspending and underspending can lead to confusion, lower confidence, and many other negative outcomes. The right manufacturing cost estimation is essential to optimizing the manufacturing process and building value-driven product, which is capable of competing in the global market.

So it’s particularly important to figure out manufacturing costs associated with raw materials, product units, quality control inspection and shipment.

Use Design From The Contract Manufacturer

When it comes to industrial design, you will probably have a hard time.

As you may not be a design expert and you have no idea how to use CAD and build a prototype, and more importantly, you can’t start learning design from the scratch. You know your product design needs to be done by someone who has the skill set required for this task. So, you may want to hire an in-house designer to achieve a better appearance result. However, it may not be economically viable for small-business owners.

To cut costs, many businessmen would look for freelancers to help with their product design. But the problem is how to guarantee the result when your project is complex. You will end up in endless chats and files without getting things done.

You can count on your contract company which has a team of engineers and industrial designers working together for a certain project. They will work closely with you to create a well-designed prototype that can be used as a final product or can be modified to suit other requirements.

And the cost of product design is negligible comparing the production costs, estimated at around 5% of total expenses in your project.

Substitute Raw Materials

Don’t make the mistake of relying on the same raw materials for your products throughout the business’ life cycle.

That’s because raw materials are influenced by many factors that change over time, which can significantly impact your total costs and production deadline.

As a business grows, you need to consider producing the same or similar product with alternative raw materials, which are more economically sustainable for your business.

For instance, consider ways you may be able to recycle materials into new products or use less expensive substitute materials. These small changes can drastically help you reduce manufacturing costs.

However, this could be risky if you don’t plan and make the appropriate changes. So, make sure you know what materials are best suited for your product so that your goods are always meeting industry standards and customer expectations.

Conduct Quality Inspection

Maybe you’ve read a few stories about how an overseas business has reduced its costs by cutting down on quality inspection.

However, it’s not a good idea especially when you are running a big business and want to hold the company in long term. Using quality control offers you peace of mind.

That’s because when customers receive your product which is of low quality and defective, they will complain online and never come back to you again. You will lose your reputation and profits.

If you want to reduce costs but still need to check if your product meets your expectations, you can work with a third-party quality inspection company.

By hiring an experienced quality inspector to conduct regular checks throughout production, you can be sure that your products are safe for consumption.

Get Started with Contract Manufacturing Today

Using contract manufacturing in China is a smart move for your company, which helps to save costs and time. So you can focus on expanding your business.

When your company needs contract manufacturing services, come to Shield Works. Our experienced team helps to keep your project moving smoothly and efficiently. With our British management background and long-term manufacturing experience, we are so sure of our proven process and expertise we take the responsibility of protecting you from all manufacturing defects.  Contact us to diss your project today!

Reliable 3rd-Party Quality Control Services in China: Tips to Find Them

When you’re importing goods from China, the last thing you want to do is get things wrong on your end. That’s why you need to hire a 3rd-party quality control service to check the product before it gets shipped out to your customers. The problem, however, is that there are so many companies offering this type of service in China that it can be hard to know which one will do the best job at an affordable price. By following these tips, you can find exactly what you need from an excellent 3rd-party quality control service in China and avoid costly mistakes with your business.

What is 3rd-party quality control service?

A 3rd-party QC inspection is a kind of quality control conducted by an independent and neutral institution. A company can choose a 3rd-party inspection agency as its partner for QC at a lower cost, because it’s outsourced from them. In comparison with other types of inspections, such as 2nd party or 1st party inspection, 3rd party QC is recommended more. Mainly because it’s less expensive than other two types but still has strong credibility among customers. The key reason why companies prefer using a 3rd-party QC service provider is that they don’t have to buy any equipment or hire new staff members. Instead, they can just focus on their core business while outsourcing their quality control services.

Can I trust 3rd-party quality control service in China?

This is probably one of the first questions that comes to mind for many people considering outsourcing their quality control needs in China. It’s natural to have doubts about something you are not familiar with, but rest assured that you can trust Chinese quality control services. Hiring a 3rd-party in China is no stranger to many businesses. In fact, it’s common practice for large foreign companies to hire several 3rd party QC services in China, such as SGS and BV. These companies are large and well known due to their reputation of accuracy, strictness and integrity. Thus, if you already outsourced your QC work to them before, you would most likely find their service worth returning for another round of cooperation.

What should you first consider when choosing one?

If you are new to China, choosing a quality control company in China can be challenging. There are so many independent QC services for you to choose from in China. It is also hard to tell if a 3rd-party QC provider is good or bad as there are no clear standards or service levels available. You need to make sure that they can provide quality inspection service at an economical price that suits your budget while also ensuring quality. To find a reliable 3rd-party quality control company in China, it’s important to understand what type of product testing and inspection needs you have first. For example, do you require plastic injection molding samples inspection? What about raw material inspection? How will these materials affect product performance? What kind of production process is used? Are raw materials tested prior to production? These questions should help narrow down your search and help you find a trusted and qualified 3rd party inspector who will do their job well.

How can you judge whether they are qualified or not?

First, it’s a good idea to ask for samples of their previous work, as well as references from existing clients. Once you have selected a few prospects, there are also several ways you can get an idea of their competence and reliability. Before selecting any one provider for your project, make sure that they have experience working with similar projects. Check if they have received ISO certification and how long they have held it for. Also ask what kind of equipment they use on site and how large their staff is; an operator should be on site at all times during testing. If possible, find out if they have ever done business with other companies in your industry. This will help you determine whether or not they will understand your needs and requirements. Asking these questions up front will save you time and money later on down the line when things go wrong. If possible, request a copy of their quality control manual so that you know exactly what to expect from them before signing anything official.

Where to find reliable 3rd-party QC services in China?

Online platform is a common solution. You can get a 3rd-party QC company through local e-commerce platform or other online platforms like Alibaba. But before you decide to use an online platform, you need to do some research about it. There are scammers on these platforms that will charge you for their services without ever doing anything for you. It takes time and patience as well as know-how of which sites are safe to work with.

Shield Works has almost 17 years of QC service in China and strictly enforces international standards. Check us out and reach out if you are interested!

Made in China: The Process of Product Assembly

Assembly lines began back in the 19th century in meatpacking factories. The famous Henry Ford used this idea as a solution to produce his widely known automobiles. Ford realized the benefits of a product assembly line as it decreased his costs dramatically, to both his own products and those of Ford customers. 

As the demand for eCommerce grows, more companies are selling their products online. These products are being sold and then shipped from an external warehouse where products are assembled in massive quantities. 

Keep reading to learn more about the process of product assembly, its benefits and challenges, and how China has become the greatest manufacturing superpower. 

What Is Product Assembly?

Product assembly is the process of creating products in sequential steps. Each step has its own materials to put together in specific ways. All leading up to the final product.

This process was originally set up like a regular assembly line. It involves a number of workers standing in a line of some sort by a specific machine or piece of equipment. In some cases, they are sitting at a workbench with their own set of materials and tools. 

Product Assembly Methods

You may recognize the classic assembly line as a large industrial-type room filled with different work stations or product lines. The workers are either sewing clothing, piecing together a television, and others. 

The process of product assembly boosted the production of goods and manufacturing. This massively increased efficiency and decreased the amount of time it took to produce large quantities of products. 

The higher the quality and the greater the availability of technology in modern times, the greater the need for a smooth process for businesses. There is also the perfecting of operations and mass manufacturing of products.

These manufacturing plants and warehouses involve a lot of detailed operations, management, and technicians to ensure the regular flow of systems. It becomes an entire business operation in itself and requires proper function. 

Classic

The classic assembly lines using factory workers are still very much in place. However, switching to using large factories with heavy machinery has become more popular for big players in the field. 

Automated

Through automated processes, different machines or large pieces of equipment are used to put a product together piece by piece at different stages. This was done to create an end product with great speed and efficiency.

Which Product Assembly Method Do I Need? 

Depending on your product, the method of product assembly will differ. For example, there will be no need for something like weld assembly if your product is clothing. Ask yourself, is it large and complex needing automated product assembly or can it be done with a classic assembly line? 

Also, is your product one that is shipped out fully assembled, or is it completed elsewhere? This refers to things like furniture that’s shipped to a storefront in pieces versus an automobile that you don’t expect a customer to complete themselves. 

With product assembly, millions of products and goods are shipped across the globe daily. It has provided hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of factory jobs. 

Assembly lines have grown to include large factories across the world, with the most manufacturing being done in China.

Product Assembly in China

China has perfected the product assembly line through decades of practice. They are trusted as the top manufacturing nation in the world for many reasons.

There is no requirement to employ highly-skilled workers. Unless it’s an engineered product, factories can usually hire many more people at low costs. It’s great for the plant as more workers means more hires and increased productivity and goods production.

China has also optimized on factories or manufacturing plants being concentrated to one industry. What this means is that textiles will be produced in one area and electronic parts in another. These are generally referred to as production clusters

This process results in streamlined manufacturing for more goods in one place. It has really put China above the rest of the world when it comes to production. 

What You Need to Know When Choosing to Produce in China

The most important thing to consider is to figure out what type of assembly is required based on your product. Are you looking to manufacture textiles? Is there a need for engineers in your assembly line, or do the steps require low capacity?

The process of the product assembly itself depends on the operations of the plant. This can also involve what type of product you have and which method of assembly you choose. 

Is it line assembly where workers are assigned to each step in the process, whether it be quality testing at the end or checking for issues from the start? Your warehouse might have an inspection line in itself. 

It’s important to think about production times. Take into consideration the product, type of assembly, and how these two can affect each other. 

Research 

Of course, for businesses, there is a lot of legal paperwork involved in selecting a product manufacturing plant in China. Additionally, agreements need to be made before any production begins and plans are finalized.

To ensure you choose the best option for you, be sure to research different manufacturing warehouses in China. Research can be done through looking through all their social media (if available). This will give you a sense of their following and their level of popularity in the community.

Another great way to do research would be by looking up company reviews. Do they have a lot of happy customers? Do they have long-lasting business relationships or testimonies? You can also research any news about the company.

Tour the Space

As a business owner about to invest in a manufacturing plant, there are structural and operational things to look out for too. Check the condition of their warehouse in terms of cleanliness, safety protocols, and more. Look at the size of the space and check out the quality. Given the current travel restrictions in China, it is unrealistic for many businesses oversea to physically pay a visit. Hire a qualified 3rd-party QC agent to perform factory audits for you.

If you notice some equipment is broken or sitting unattended ask questions. Be prepared to ask about how they operate. Do they only hire skilled workers, or are they open to having different skill levels of staff? Remember this might not be as important depending on your product. 

Have a Trusted Source

Contracts should be laid out with every detail included to cover any possible scenario that could halt production such as delays. There need to be planned solutions for issues with unmet timelines or quality expectations.

Meet with your manufacturers before you make a choice. If you can, visit the warehouse or plant location to have a look for yourself. If not, you should have a liaison in China who can do this for you. A trusted resource to communicate issues and updates to you is beneficial. 

The Benefits of Product Assembly in China

Over time, the quality of outsourced production has increased with more and more North American companies using warehouses in China for several reasons. 

Production in China has much lower costs for higher reward. The cost of labor is lower so more employees can be hired. The production level is massive so products can be ready quicker resulting in more purchases. 

There is no need to track down a manufacturing plant because they are so readily available in China. They are usually already operating for other companies as well. This removes the need for a business to build one themselves, which would require hiring your own staff and paying for your own space. 

Choosing a China assembly service for manufacturing jumpstarts the process of product production. This means a quicker start to making revenue. 

The Challenges of Product Assembly in China

With the efficiency and ready-to-go structure of a manufacturing space in China, there are some challenges.

There will be a need to have someone on your team to oversee general factory setbacks that may occur. Because you aren’t able to just drive over in an emergency, it would be good to have a contact who lives in that country. This could be the owner of the plant itself. 

Communication is Key

It’s important to keep communication smooth, open, and at a steady pace. There could be things lost in translation or miscommunications that can cause very big problems. Imagine asking to change a part in assembly and it happens to be the wrong one?

Also related to communication, there could be massive time differences between your country and China. This can make it difficult to have regular communication. It could make it tough to have a good relationship with the manufacturer. 

Depending on where you reside, China is across the world and in an entirely different country. This can make you feel very disconnected by the inability to be on-site regularly.

Ensuring your supplier of parts and materials are also openly communicating is crucial. This refers to communicating with the business owner and with the manufacturing plant. Issues can arise if parts aren’t being sent on time or are incorrect or missing. 

Remember that some companies can be committing fraud. Keep an eye out for fake websites, no contact information, no reviews, or a location. There have been cases of companies accepting deposits or a related hold and backing out without contact.

Additional Challenges

In terms of shipping times, they will increase dramatically when your products are being outsourced from China. Standard shipping can take up to two weeks. 

Take into consideration that production is so vast in China that it sometimes negatively affects the environment. The levels of air pollution from factories has only increased over the last few decades. But efforts have also been made to improve the air quality and the improvement is significant as well.

There is also the challenge of a lack of resources from the massive production in China. The availability of resources and materials in China to produce goods across these warehouses has dwindled. 

In 2018, President Trump also enacted an increase in taxes on imports from China. This caused a riff in the relationship between production in China from US-based companies. Some actually moved their production out of China as a result. 

The Future of Product Assembly in China

China has plans in place to continue holding its spot as the largest production superpower in the world for many years to come. With the growth of intelligent technologies and a never-ending need for low-cost manufacturing, this seems very likely. 

There has even been discussion around using data from manufacturing plants to understand customer product needs. This can increase happy customers and thus potential revenue for businesses worldwide. 

Contract manufacturing in China is on the rise. Think about how many products you buy that are ‘made in China.’ It’s no surprise that companies outsource their business in this country. The benefits certainly outweigh the cons outlined in this article. 

Get a Consultation

Based in the UK, Shield Works has 16 years of experience outsourcing product development in China and product assembly on-site, fostering long-term relationships with their clients. 

Its founders and leaders are experts in the field of manufacturing with direct connections and communication with China as partners of their business sphere. They have worked to assist both large and small businesses through the process of finding the best manufacturing facilities in China, while also supporting manufacturing in-house. 

If you are interested in product assembly services in China, connect with our professionals in the product assembly and product manufacturing field for assistance. If you are manufacturing in-house and looking for a new space, we can help with that too.

The Power of Contract Manufacturing: How It Can Drive Down Costs and Increase Flexibility

The contract manufacturing industry is thriving globally due to its ability to drive the immense reduction in the cost of manufacturing goods and to grant companies increased flexibility faster than traditional methods.

In this article, we’ll take you through the primary reasons why contract manufacturing can deliver improved cost performance and production flexibility.

Reduce Labor Costs

Labor cost is a key element in the manufacturing industry. Typically, the labor is more expensive when you are from the developed world. So it makes more sense to outsource your production to China.

Depending on how far along you are in manufacturing your product, you may be paying upwards of 50-70% for labor costs.

When shifting to contract manufacturing, it’s typical to see those costs reduce by 30-50%. While lower costs aren’t guaranteed, there’s plenty of room for negotiation based on your volume requirements.

In some cases, companies have been able to negotiate down as much as 80% of their original labor costs. This is a massive saving that can help you create a more profitable business model from day one.

Reduced Capital Requirements

If you’re not ready to invest in building an in-house engineering team and buying expensive equipment, contract manufacturing is the best option to help you get a product to market with minimal risk.

You simply pay for services as needed rather than extra investment, otherwise, that will be a waste of having a facility with equipment that sits idle most of the time.

Some manufacturers may even let you use their machinery at fairly lower prices if you hold an order of larger quantities or have a good relationship with them.

Typically, a professional contract manufacturing company focuses more on improving efficiency. They have a pool of in-house specialized engineers because a company’s production efficiency obviously cannot be improved overnight.

Increase Inventory Flexibility

Since you are not tied to a specific factory, you can switch manufacturing plants at any time without having to change production plans. This gives you increased flexibility for where and when you buy raw materials as well as components needed for your product. In this case, you will never be stuck with too much or too little inventory if you have contract manufacturing.

Meanwhile, when you work with contract manufacturers, they handle all aspects of manufacturing including procurement and logistics.

The cost savings associated with using a third-party supplier is passed on to you in terms of lower prices. In addition, because these companies specialize in one aspect of manufacturing (such as PCB assembly), they do it better than anyone else in their field which means they can offer better quality products at competitive prices.

Increase Manufacturing Experience

If you choose a professional contract manufacturer who is specialized in what they do, you will be worry-free in many situations.

The most important one is that they usually have a customized plan for you to meet your needs in production, quality standards and lead time. It will be easier and more effective to get your project done.

The other excellent experience for you if you have a professional contract manufacturing firm is that they have one-stop supply chain services to deal with from sourcing, quality control, warehousing and shipping. With these services, you can save your time and money in finding other third-party companies for your business.

Manufacturing In China With Confidence

Contract manufacturing is only becoming more prevalent as time goes on. When your company needs contract manufacturing services, come to Shield Works. We take care of every aspect for you, so you can focus on innovation and launching products as quickly as possible.

With our well-established facility based in Zhuhai, Guangdong Province, we offer a range of services to accommodate your needs, from a one-time contract manufacturing and precision assembly to warehousing and fulfilment, without ever worrying about inventory or quality control. Our production process is streamlined, efficient, and optimized – so no matter what phase your business is in, we can take care of you.

We pride ourselves on excellent customer service and British background management experience. Contact us to find out how we can help with your project!

Why China is Leading the Way in Product Prototyping

It’s no secret that China has become the dominant manufacturing force in the world, but many people still don’t realize how far this dominance reaches and what it can mean for your business. Product prototyping, for example, is something we take for granted in America, but China has taken it to a whole new level with their affordable and precise methods of product prototyping. With this knowledge, you can feel confident in your company’s ability to produce high-quality products at the speed of light by using Chinese product prototyping services.

Low-Cost Labor

While labor is not cheap in China, it’s still cheaper than similar manufacturing centers like Japan and South Korea. Using more advanced equipment and more efficient production processes, Chinese manufacturers are able to make their products faster, cheaper, and of higher quality than anywhere else on Earth. This allows them to price their services much lower than other countries. These efficiencies come from better use of technology (like robotics) and closer monitoring of labor schedules to minimize downtime (i.e., workers on breaks). The combination of these factors—lower costs from efficiency improvements plus lower wages—means that Chinese manufacturers can provide more products at a lower cost than anywhere else in the world.

One-Stop Shopping

You can get everything you need to prototype a product in one place. Many Chinese prototyping shops have engineers, graphic designers, 3D printers and injection molders on staff; once you sign up for a package deal, they’ll coordinate all aspects of your project from start to finish. This allows startup founders to do more with less. Even better: there are increasingly specialized prototyping companies that provide rapid manufacturing services for startups tackling a specific industry vertical.

For example, if you’re building a medical device, it makes sense to partner with a manufacturer that specializes in medical device design and manufacturing. These firms know exactly what’s required by regulatory agencies such as FDA so your team doesn’t have to worry about those details. Startups working on hardware projects should definitely consider partnering with these specialists early on in their development cycle.

Fast Delivery

Inexpensive prototyping and large-scale manufacturing allow product developers to innovate at an unprecedented pace. Chinese factories offer lower costs, shorter lead times, and larger production volumes than other countries. Companies like Apple have established relationships with Chinese manufacturers for over a decade. Today, nearly all of Apple’s products are manufactured in China—including final assembly for some parts (e.g., cables and batteries). While there are many factors that come into play when deciding where to locate production, high speed of prototype delivery has become increasingly important as consumers demand better turnaround times on pre-orders.

Preloaded Technology

Chinese manufacturers have preloaded their 3D printers with software to make them easier to use. They’ve also preloaded their engineers with more industry experience, as they tend to hire skilled workers who are versed in traditional manufacturing and creating similar products—or at least work with experts who are. Given the size of the population, the talent pool in China is nothing comparable to other countries. Such a huge gap can be difficult to close.

Culture of Innovation

The Chinese are traditionally known for copying or outright stealing Western technologies. But that’s all changing as China transitions into a technological powerhouse on its own right. Beijing’s top leaders have started to believe that innovation, not imitation, can help to solve some of their country’s problems and create new industries as well. They know that innovation can lead to economic growth and more jobs; over 700 universities across China have integrated innovation into their names, signifying an emphasis on education for research and development (R&D). Just a few years ago, these schools were focused on training engineers by rote—and churning out products manufactured elsewhere.

Local Tech Hubs

One reason why Chinese entrepreneurs are able to prototype at an impressive rate is because many Chinese startups utilize local tech hubs. These facilities allow a company to rent office space, equipment, and more – eliminating expensive overhead costs while also fostering a sense of community and support. Silicon Valley may have its perks, but when it comes to product prototyping, being closer to industry experts and resources might be just as important as proximity to large financial markets. For example, take Shenzhen’s Huaqiangbei Market for Electronics Components. This massive market features almost every kind of electronic component imaginable, from processors to motors and sensors to circuit boards. It’s like an entrepreneur’s paradise! There’s no need for a startup engineer or product designer to go through a distributor or manufacturer if they can just walk down Huaqiangbei Street instead! But there’s another benefit that makes Huaqiangbei so attractive: information sharing.

Shield Works has over 16 years of product prototyping in China and our n-house engineering team is both well-seasoned and bilingual. If interested, please feel free to contact us!

9 Tips For Running an Efficient Assembly Line

The assembly line first went into use around the 14th century in England. By the early 20th century, assembly lines were being used in production plants all across the United States. Not long after that, assembly lines began popping up in factories all over the world.

There are many reasons assembly lines have increased in popularity over the years. One reason is that they tend to be more efficient than other production methods. When done correctly, assembly lines can help increase productivity and decrease costs.

If you’re thinking about implementing an assembly line in your own factory, there are a few things to keep in mind. A single slowdown can cause a ripple effect that impacts the entire production process.

This blog post will discuss nine tips for running an efficient assembly line.

1. Have a Plan in Place

An assembly line is only as efficient as the plan that’s been put in place. Before starting production, you need to have a clear idea of what needs to be accomplished. This includes everything from setting targets to designing the workflow.

Once you have a plan in place, it’ll be much easier to keep the assembly line running smoothly. Furthermore, you need to make sure that everyone involved understands the plan. This way, they can all work together to achieve a common goal.

2. Set Realistic Targets

If you want your assembly line to be efficient, you need to set realistic targets. This means that you can’t expect it to produce perfect results every single time. There will always be room for improvement.

However, you can ensure that your assembly line is working as efficiently as possible by setting realistic targets.

One way to set realistic targets is to use a production simulator. This will allow you to test different assembly line scenarios and see how they impact the final product. Using a simulator lets you find the most efficient assembly line configuration for your needs.

Another way to set realistic targets is to track your assembly line’s performance over time. It’ll give you a good idea of what improvements are necessary. You can also use this data to make predictions about future assembly-line efficiency.

3. Communicate With Your Team

Your production line is only as efficient as the people running it. That’s why it’s important to communicate with your team and make sure that everyone is on the same page.

One way to do this is to create a production schedule. This will help everyone know what’s needed of them and when. You can avoid assembly line disruptions and keep the assembly line running smoothly by having a schedule.

Additionally, hold regular meetings to discuss assembly line problems and brainstorm solutions. It’s also a good opportunity to give feedback about the assembly line’s performance. It’ll ensure everyone is working to improve performance and assembly line efficiency.

4. Implement Quality Control Measures

If you want your assembly line to be efficient, you need to ensure that its products are of high quality. You can achieve this by implementing quality control measures.

One way to do this is to have each product inspected before leaving the assembly line. This way, you can catch any defects and fix them before they cause problems further down the line.

Another way to improve quality control is to use assembly line robots. These robots can be programmed to spot defects and remove them from the assembly line. This helps to ensure that you only make products that customers love.

5. Minimize Part Count

One way to keep an assembly line moving smoothly is to reduce the number of parts that need handling.

You can do this by incorporating more components into each part or redesigning the product so that fewer parts are necessary. Assembly line workers will appreciate having fewer parts to deal with, and it’ll help keep the line moving at a steady pace.

Additionally, reducing the part count can also lead to reduced product assembly costs. So it’s a win-win for both the assembly line workers and the company’s bottom line.

6. Use Modular Components

Another way to reduce the part count is to use modular components. This means that you can use each component in multiple products. For example, a company that manufactures car seats could use the same basic seat frame in their standard and luxury models.

This approach has several benefits. First, it reduces the number of unique parts that you need to stock.

Second, it allows assembly workers to become more familiar with the components. This leads to increased productivity and efficiency. Also, it’ll lead to a reduction in assembly costs.

7. Improve Ergonomics

One way to make assembly line workers more productive is to improve the ergonomics of the assembly line. This is possible if you ensure workers have the proper tools and equipment to do their jobs.

Make sure that the assembly line design allows workers to work without having to reach or bend too much. Additionally, assembly line workers should get breaks regularly to avoid fatigue.

Improving ergonomics on the assembly line can lead to increased productivity and fewer errors. Additionally, it can help to reduce the number of workers who experience injuries on the job.

8. Implement Quality Control Checks

Another way to increase production line efficiency is to implement quality control checks.

These checks can help ensure that products are assembled correctly and that there are no defects. Quality control checks can be performed by assembly line workers or separate quality control teams.

This process can help improve the quality of products and reduce assembly time. It’ll help identify assembly line problems, which allows you to fix them before they cause major issues.

9. Use Assembly Line Software

There are many assembly line software programs available that can help to improve efficiency. These programs can track assembly progress, schedule workers, and perform quality control checks. Additionally, some assembly line software programs can also automate assembly tasks.

Using assembly line software can help you optimize the assembly process and make it more efficient. Additionally, it can help you track assembly progress and identify issues so you can fix them quickly.

How to Run an Efficient Assembly Line

There are many ways to improve assembly line efficiency. By following these tips, you can increase productivity and quality while reducing assembly costs. Implementing even a few of these tips can significantly improve your assembly line’s performance.

Did you find this article informative? Now that you know what goes into improving your assembly line, please contact us to learn more about our assembly line solutions.