As brands and entrepreneurs we always search for optimum solutions for all of our sourcing needs, and in the quest for the same, discover that sourcing for products globally is quite efficient especially in production focussed countries like China, India, Thailand, Morocco, Portugal, Turkey, Vietnam, Spain, Bulgaria, etc. Products are comparatively more affordable, and the whole myth about products sourced in Asia being of lower quality is quite subjective and debatable. It’s not about Asia, bad and good products can be found everywhere as much in Europe as in Asia. Quality is not dependent on location and the place you manufacture does not speak about the quality of the products. It all depends on the kind of fashion suppliers and sources you choose to collaborate with, the kind of specifications you convey, and the years of experience you have in the industry and the constant physical presence of a local team backed up by an international team that knows your standards, living and working within the production countries that help in dealing with controlling the process. Be careful of the companies that are not working in the production countries, and simply just have “contacts/collaborations/partners” in those countries. We advise you to check if the person/company you choose to collaborate with, is really working inside the production country and know the local markets and people while maintaining international standards of quality and reliability.
While having an international fashion supplier has its benefits, it comes with its own set of homework. There are so many things to check and consider, analyze and supervise before deciding. Many brands now personally prefer to get external help when it comes to sourcing and managing their global fashion supply chains, which leads us to our next question, whom to approach?
There seems to be a round of dilemma regarding whom to choose, Sourcing agents? Or Fashion sourcing companies? And which sourcing companies? While it seems like a complex question, to us the answer is quite clear. Before we let you know our thoughts, we would like you to understand what both of them mean.
A sourcing agent is an individual whom you get in contact with from various sources like social media, Fiverr, Linkedin, Upwork, or general A sourcing agent is an individual whom you get in contact with from various sources like social media, Fiverr, Linkedin, Upwork, or general internet who helps you with your sourcing needs, They are usually someone who do freelance fashion work and do not have an established structure. Once given the brief, a sourcing agent reaches out to various suppliers to source the products you require. As a sourcing agent, their role ends as soon as they introduce you to the supplier, and hold no liability or responsibility after that.
SOURCING & QUALITY CONTROL COMPANY
Real sourcing companies are established organizations that can assist and manage the entire supply chain right from sourcing, development, production management, quality control, logistics coordination etc. They should become an extension of your own team, working and living in the location of fashion manufacturing to ensure everything is safe and perfect.They should care about your needs as a business and provide optimized solutions derived from their years of experience. To know more about how Deepwear as a sourcing and quality control company can help you, click here.
ADVANTAGES OF CHOOSING A SOURCING COMPANY
- TRUST: Fashion Sourcing companies are established organizations that have been in the business for a long time. Not only does their experience provide credibility, but they also have long-lasting relationships with suppliers, so great service can be expected from the company, and in turn from the suppliers too. Be careful of all these new digital websites offering trendy promises with no proof to back them.
- ACCESSIBILITY: Most fashion sourcing companies have two-way accessibility. Let’s take a look at Deepwear for example, We have our team in more than 15 countries worldwide, which include major production countries like China, Thailand, India, Portugal, Turkey, Vietnam, Morocco, Bulgaria, Indonesia, Spain but we also have offices in Fashion hubs like New York, Paris, London, Melbourne, Amsterdam which makes us easily accessible to latest trends and our clients, and the suppliers easily accessible to us. To know more about our International sourcing opportunities, contact us.
- TRANSPARENCY: One of the most valued aspects of choosing Deepwear is transparency, You are updated and included in every part of the journey and once a supplier is chosen, we also open up all lines of communications between you and them. Since the entire process of fashion manufacturing is happening in a completely foreign location, having transparency helps our clients feel at ease and trust us to handle things for them.We are not a middle man neither a trader, We are an individual entity here to help and support brands to regain control and security over their manufacturing process.
- EXPERIENCE: As mentioned above, sourcing companies have been in the field for a long time, and with a growing database of contacts and connections, we also have a threshold of experience in this field. We can guide you to take more realistic and practical decisions and also provide logical solutions to whatever problems you encounter during the process. Only real, long experience can guide you, and Deepwear is a company that has been built on a path of mistakes which have translated into experience and these experiences have built our processes of today, and we can guide you make better choices with 25 years of Industry expertise in our hats, that is why, not only start ups but many established and experienced brands trust Deepwear.
- RISK REDUCTION: As a part of our experience comes the understanding to read and assess a particular supplier. We know how reliable a supplier is just by interacting with them, but to be 100% sure, we always thoroughly audit the suppliers and check every aspect of their facilities to ensure we are satisfied with them. We always make sure that the suppliers we provide are reliable and can help scale up your business if required with a stable and trusted supply chain.
- QUALITY CONTROL: A sourcing company like Deepwear will oversee the entire production process, we do quality control checks at the beginning of the production, during production, and at the end. Our on-ground physical presence at all the sites of production throughout the entire manufacturing process ensures everything happens according to our timeline,quality standards and give us control. We are not collaborating with anyone and we have our own exclusive full-time team present at the site of production.
- ETHICAL STANDARDS: Most established fashion Sourcing service companies like Deepwear, audit their factories to check for ethical and environmental reasons. We at Deepwear strongly believe in supporting an ethical and sustainable supply chain. We don’t just believe in certifications and have our own personal audits to check the ethical standards of any factory.
WHY NOT WORK WITH A FREELANCING SOURCING AGENT?
As freelancers, sourcing agents do not have an established setup when doing business. They are not established and therefore hold no power over the factories.They do not have the capacity to take any responsibility for what happens later. He/She can introduce you to a bad supplier and you might not even realize it until midway through the production process. A sourcing agent unlike an established company is located in one place and even if he has many contacts around the world his/her reach and efficiency is comparatively low. Contacting a sourcing agent might appear to be affordable, but as a single entity, they will probably scan through 4-5 suppliers and choose the best from that, whereas we as a sourcing service company scout through hundreds of suppliers from all over the world before choosing the most efficient, affordable and appropriate supplier.
Even when you think that the sourcing agent is working for you the reality is that in most cases they are also getting paid by the factories and so you might think you’re paying them 5-10% but in reality they are charging much more from you. And because they are paid by a factory, in case of a problem their loyalty always ends up favouring the factories more than you, and the brand will end up having no one to question or complain to.
At the end of the day, having a good fashion supplier is indispensable for your business and will have a great impact on your journey forward, however you always need someone on your side to control them. Choosing a supplier when there is so much at stake can be daunting, but with the help of a good sourcing company like Deepwear, you can overcome all problems like control issues, quality issues, supply problems, sourcing problems, communication barriers, consistency, etc and grow your business fearlessly. Working with a good supplier and sourcing company can be the best investment but if you choose them wrongly, it can totally destroy your brand.At Deepwear, we can give you the right and correct sourcing/manufacturing support. Here we have a few more pieces of advice for you.
- It’s important to have a good supplier, but it is indispensable to have your own independent team on the ground that is there to double-check everything the supplier does and is paid by you and not by the supplier, and hence is loyal to you, with your best interests in mind. Do the sourcing and hire a sourcing team to audit and control the supplier you have found. At Deepwear, 40% of our clients source the suppliers by themselves and then hire Deepwear to audit, control, support the negotiations, sample development, production management, and quality control with their existing supplier.
- Be cautious and careful of the companies/agents who only work with start-up. They usually have no experience themselves and take advantage of brands who are fresh, new and have no experience in the industry.
We are here to protect and develop new and well established brands from unethical practices and prevent them from being scammed, you can think of us as your employee/bodyguard/advisor, who will help you retain control and build trust over your production process. Get started with Deepwear today to shift towards efficiency with your sourcing and manufacturing.