Have you struggled to ask for a free replacement or premium delivery at supplier's cost after receiving complaints from you customers? How long did you take to solve it eventually and how many times did you encounter the same situation per year? Would you like to buy any more from the same supplier or even the same region any more? Do you use Quality Assurance Agreement to protect yourselves?
One day I went to a street shop to buy a faucet, and after checking the style and price I simply asked " how about the quality", "You are assured, the quality is very good", said the shop owner, "How good", I further checked as in my past experience this is not a good and reliable answer. "For this brand of faucet, I have given to my aunt to use and I did not receive any negative feedback". "Okay, I understand now, and do you have any warranty to it, such as two years", in my experience the faucets from such street shops usually only can last for only near 1 year before various of failures. Then the owner was a little upset and said "Sorry, but I think I can only give you maximum 1 year warranty… The trader only give me 1 year warranty…". Finally I select the one and ask for a receipt with additional note of warranty annually wrote on side.
This is my real personal experience and I believe you face it from time to time in your daily life, and how do you handle it?
Back to my questions in the top section, if you work in a company as a professional to make the purchasing decisions and / or handle the complaints, how do you handle it or minimize the efforts after happen or even prevent it at the beginning?
One good way to protect yourselves is signing off a Quality Assurance Agreement with your suppliers where in some other cases was called Quality Control Agreement.
An agreement does not mean everything especially in current business situation of China but it surely at least delivers your general and some core requirements, as well as bottom lines of cooperation to your partners.
You do not need a lawyer to fully check the agreement but some basic rules should be followed and in latter blog we will show you the experience and examples. At least Quality Warranty should be mentioned in below subjects:
- Quality Standards – Is there any international / national standards applicable for the products? If there is a standard, does the product fully comply with it or just some clause? Which level does the product follow if there are multiple grades in standard and this usually is quite common.
- Product Quality Warranty – How reliable of the products to work normally for maximum how long time? In some cases like machines, this can also limit to some key parts.
- How long after storing in house can the product still work properly? Which is also called Shelf Life Warranty.
- If fails, how to deal with the supplier? Which also means obligation or liability in agreement.
If you put these points strongly on the agreement or Purchasing Orders, properly you will get some defensive feedback from your counterpart if they really care about the commitment and business, and no matter they are from anywhere of the globe.
You do not need to resort to it every time but I am quite sure you can have a better night after release the order.