Choosing a new supplier can be tough, especially if you’ve been burned in the past by late deliveries or shoddy products. You want the best product for the best price, but you know there is more to choosing a new nonwoven fabric supplier than just those bottom line numbers.
Here are five things you should consider before you decide to go with a new supplier.
- Knowing your industry. Have they manufactured products for your industry before? For example, if you’re manufacturing parts for the automotive industry, you may want to be sure that your nonwoven supplier understands the special considerations automobile manufacturers require. If they haven’t manufactured products for your space before, it’s important to get a handle on how well they’ve engineered products for other industries. Ask for references and then follow up with questions about customization, speed of delivery and product quality.
- Flexibility. Let’s face it: some people are tough to work with. Does this new supplier have patience with your questions? Are they willing to go outside the box and engineer a new solution that will meet your product needs? Can they accommodate your production needs? Sure, there are some demands that just can’t be met, but great nonwovens suppliers will work with you as best they can to ensure that you’re getting the product you need.
- Quality focused. Does this supplier have procedures in place to ensure that your products meet your quality standards? Do they test the product to see if it adheres to your specifications?
- Delivery times. When you’re a part of a supply chain, on-time deliveries become a critical component of your manufacturing process. If you’re expecting your nonwoven fabrics on the first of the month and they don’t arrive until the 10th, you now have a problem. Find out if your new supplier is serious about delivery.
- Price. We can’t pretend that price doesn’t matter; it does. But it’s important to consider that cheapest isn’t always best. Understand how your new supplier develops their price estimates. If they’re building in price for product engineering improvements, that’s a difference you should probably consider as a positive.
There are many factors to consider when choosing a new nonwoven fabric manufacturer but the five above will certainly narrow the playing field for you. What is the most important thing to you when choosing a new supplier?
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