Sorry I've been quiet for a while - business has been crazy, and I've been in Hong Kong seeing some new key clients...
So, you place your order with the Chinese factory, you pay your deposit, and now you wait.... The charming customer service girl that helped you place your order now moves on to other clients, other PO's, and from this point, she has limited (if at all) knowledge of how your production is going.
If you do make contact with her, she will have to go through a number of levels of management to get (very filtered) information on the status of your production.
The objective then of independant third-party DUPRO QC inspections serves a number of critical purposes. DUPRO inspections are usually performed when between 20% - 50% of the products are assembled (maybe not even packed, although packaging would be good to have at hand during this inspection).
The advantages of DUPRO are:
> Early warning of non-conformity
> The opportunity for the factory to retro-fit non-conforming products to your original specification
> Random (true production) samples can be drawn for shipment to you, or to a lab if testing/certification is required
> An accurate overview of production timing - are they on time, or will there be delays in shipping dates??
Another variation of DUPRO is Production Monitoring - essentially, this is DUPRO ongoing for a number of days or weeks, whereby the inspector is onsite, inspects, and gives a daily report on the quality and production volume. This is especially important for high-value and high-risk product types.
As ever, my shameless punt comes here: www.TopInspection.com