QC inspections often fail. Actually, most of the time there is at least a discrepancy and/or too many defects.
When my Chinese inspectors announce that the inspection is failed, the supplier usually focuses on the points that triggered the failure. But when I am the inspector, or the lead inspector, some clever suppliers ask me this question:
Okay, if you follow the procedure it is failed. But what is YOUR opinion about the products? Do you think they can be sold? You know the export market, and you must have a precise opinion about this.
Do I have an opinion? Most the time, I do. The problem is, I should never tell anybody about it, except maybe to my client.
There are three reasons for this:
- If I say “I think the goods can be sold without any problem” but the inspection is failed, 95% of Chinese suppliers don’t understand my position.
- If I show my inspectors that I don’t follow the procedure objectively (just because I am a foreigner or because I am the boss), why would they do it? Showing the right behavior is very important if I expect the same attitude from my staff.
- If I don’t refuse a batch of products that counts too many defects, my client runs a very high risk if he is a wholesaler… If one of his own customers inspects these same goods, they will probably be rejected!
I found this type of discussion to be complete dead ends. The majority of Chinese suppliers truly do not understand (or do not want to understand) the arguments I wrote above.
Even worse, they suspect me of being this vicious inspector who takes pleasure in rejecting a production… Either for getting bribed, or for getting new business in the form of re-inspections.
So I try to ignore questions about my personal opinion. Better be a little rude (hey, I am a laowai anyway!) than being suspected.