Supply Chain Solutions No.11 – Are the Suppliers Sample and Development facilities capable of meeting your Product Mix?

When sourcing new suppliers don’t just focus on their manufacturing ability.  Sampling and development capability and output are equally important.

There is a substantial number of small to medium manufacturers that are not geared to handling a high product mix in sampling and development.  Understand the supplier’s sampling output per month versus your demand.

If your business has a high number of monthly developments from prototyping through to salesman samples for agents and distributors globally the supplier may not have the output needed in their sampling facility delaying new product launches substantially affecting sales.

Understand the suppliers sampling methodology for existing customers, the type of product they are developing and the number of samples per product.  Each business is different, don’t assume they know your requirement, be very clear on your business need, and how many developments per month the vendor can successfully manage based on your businesses demand.  Know the vendor’s current output.

Suppliers can overcome sampling output challenges by expanding facilities to suit your business need.  It is suggested at the beginning of a relationship to work within the capability of the facility and develop gradually.

Where there is a low hit rate on sampling translating to production order, not sharing such vital information can set back the relationship in the later stages of business development as supplier profitability will be affected.

Starting small is suggested as mutual understand of working methodology is known.

ID Global Concepts are experts in supply chain management. We add value to your supply chain through consultancy or management contract to ensure the business has the best practice systems that are the right fit for your business, customer and meet your value expectations.

If you would like to learn, please email us at or visit our website

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