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The Benefits of Sourcing Overseas

Sourcing goods and services from the global market can be an effective strategy for businesses to reduce costs and streamline processes.

Sourcing goods from overseas can lower production costs whilst still getting quality goods and services, access skills labour that may not be available on home turf, access new markets and make use of exchange rate benefits.

As long as there are stringent processes in place to find and review the performance of overseas suppliers, this can be a great way to boost business profits and output in the long run.

An Overview Of Sourcing Overseas

Sourcing overseas is the business practice of buying goods and services or materials from suppliers that are based in foreign countries to that of where the business is based. Decisions on which suppliers to use are often made based on how competitive pricing is, the quality of services and materials available, and how reliable the delivery is.

This approach can help businesses to create a global presence, take advantage of cost saving, access skills and resources that may otherwise not be available, and expand their supply chain. Logistics surrounding the smooth processing and flow of goods or services from the source to the destination market is key.

Who Can Benefit From Overseas Sourcing?

Every business that offers goods and services with a defined production process can enjoy the benefits of sourcing overseas. It is an essential technique to go against serious competition and attract more customers. People tend to buy from businesses that are innovative and deliver quality at budget-friendly prices.

Global sourcing for products or services also functions as a significant driving force and exposure to the best production strategies. It offers the chance to improve engagement of your brand on a global scale and network with top professionals.

With the increased perceptions of the benefits of sourcing overseas, more businesses are now rationalising their purchasing procedures. Startups are also focused on how to maximally utilise available global sourcing routes to their advantage.

When To Consider Sourcing Overseas

Outsourcing should be considered for projects that require specialised employee profiles that your company does not have. You can also outsource projects that are too expensive or might require purchasing costly equipment. The global talent market is filled with teams experienced in precisely what you require.

Similarly, manufacturing companies can source items overseas if it will reduce their production cost and not affect the quality of their products.

Benefits of sourcing overseas

Check out the top advantages of buying goods or hiring services from other countries:

Perceived value

The potential to get the best quality at the best price is the perceived value of sourcing overseas for goods and services. That should be one of the most important considerations of any serious business owner. You must confirm that the purchased products meet the minimum expectations of your customers with ever-evolving preferences.

That requires you to check out different suppliers in that country and make comparisons of their minimum quality standards. It is better to choose an overseas company that prioritises quality products than randomly selecting one and giving them high-quality specifications. The benefit of sourcing overseas is the opportunity it affords you to get the balance between quality and price.

Increased capacity for manufacturing

Businesses that source their products and services overseas enjoy a competitive advantage associated with access to the best quality available. The benefits are even higher for companies that locate their sourcing operations in those areas. By setting up in locations with the best transportation facilities, you can reduce the production time to move products to the final destination.

That helps businesses that have to deal with delivery to an increased customer base. A smooth shipment and delivery system can let merchants plan the transportation of their goods more effectively. It also helps timely deliveries that encourage higher production capacity and more satisfied customers.

Outsourcing services can increase production capacity without compromising quality – a key benefit for companies to take advantage of.

The creation of brand-new commodities

Any organisation with multiple production sites for goods and services through global outsourcing can enjoy a competitive advantage of being able to adapt and develop new products based on market demand.

The opportunity to produce and obtain quality products at a lower price is one of the reasons for that. Since the overseas market has numerous experts and production options, there is a higher chance of getting lower labour costs. This decrease in the cost of labour functions as a competitive advantage to sell at a lesser price than the competition and still make profits.

The continuous sales, production and growth of a satisfied customer base then lead to more innovations. Innovative ideas can help any business edge over competitors and gain control over the markets. Your company becomes a leading supplier with affordable prices of goods and services. We suggest contacting a sourcing agency if unsure about how to source overseas.

Competently Managed Processes

You can only enjoy the benefits of global sourcing when you have an effective business strategy. As a new name in the industry, consider collaborating with bigger brands with more experience in outsourcing their production needs. Study and learn their business model and how they utilise the global sourcing market to their advantage.

Learning from the mistakes of others is the best way to grow and that is why you should network with industry experts as a startup. Attend community events and follow necessary advice on how to construct a successful sourcing operation overseas. The extensive knowledge from those bigger companies can let you leverage the available goods and services on the outsourcing market to sell the best products.

Assurance of quality

Quality control and assurance is another benefit of sourcing overseas for goods and services. A good strategy to achieve that is to collaborate with a reputable company or organisation experienced in sourcing products worldwide. These organisations help to handle your quality control concerns while your company focuses on buying and selling.

The outsourcing organisations also ensure the implementation of laid down quality control procedures throughout the manufacturing process. They schedule internal quality checks and see that your company passes any external audits.

Furthermore, business managers should make efforts to build productive relationships with their major suppliers of goods and services in other countries. Some of the benefits include lesser chances of having low-quality products delivered to you and ensuring timely deliveries.

Continued value

The opportunity to purchase more products or services for the same amount of money is another benefit of sourcing overseas. Some of these countries have a higher availability of raw materials that significantly reduce the cost of their manufacturing process. Businesses that capitalise in such markets enjoy an exceptional and ongoing value in the quality of products that would have been impossible to achieve without global sourcing.

That does not mean sourcing on the global market is risk-free nor should you expect the absence of low-quality products. Like any other part of the world, you can experience delays in the delivery of products and services. There is also the risk associated with cultural and language barriers during transactions.

A safe approach is to properly research that industry in the country you want to purchase their products. By sourcing overseas, you are exposing the business in exchange for lower production costs and improved product quality. It is worth the risk but you should endeavour to conduct research or collaborate with a sourcing organisation.

What are the risks of sourcing overseas?

Learn about the risks associated with sourcing products and services overseas for your business.

Differences in Timing

Differences in time zones can cause communication issues and subsequent delays when trying to complete a transaction with your supplier in another country. For example, buying from a wholesaler that lives in New Zealand (UTC+12) while you reside in the United Kingdom (UTC+0) creates significant logistical issues without one side of the arrangement making significant effort to be online at the time the other will be.

A solution to such communication challenges is to have a local presence in the country. Consider hiring an in-country staff there or a representative who can manage real-time communications with the supplier. You can also establish a physical store or warehouse in that country to make the sourcing process easy.

Language Barriers

The difference in language is another potential hurdle you might encounter when sourcing overseas. The only exception is if your supplier understands your language or has employees who can speak your first language smoothly.

Otherwise, you have to translate transaction documents and contract agreement papers which must be done by only professionals in that industry. An alternative is to employ someone who can communicate in more than one language as an intermediary between you and the supplier. You should also ensure that there are written documents of every important verbal agreement.

Expectations Regarding Quality

Quality assurance and control are stringent requirements in every manufacturing company. Most of your customers patronise your brand because the product’s quality fits their intended uses but maintaining that standard becomes a challenge when you decide to start sourcing from another country.

You can solve that by researching that company and checking online for testimonials by business owners from other countries. It is also advisable to not try only one supplier. Consider multiple options and compare using a defined set of metrics to determine quality.

Another solution is having a quality assurance manager in that country inspect every purchased item before they leave the country. Employing quality inspectors is a strategy that works almost all the time.

Compliance Issues

Every country has regulations that control the activities of their manufacturing industry irrespective of whether the products are local or produced outside the country. It is important to maintain minimum compliance with government expectations regarding social responsibility, quality, safety and the environment. Then try to exceed these requirements for the ultimate product and service delivery.

As a result of this, your suppliers must have a perfect understanding of the minimum standards in your country. We also encourage business owners to carry out audits of their foreign suppliers and opt for purchases in countries with similar manufacturing regulations. It reduces the stress associated with explaining differences in country policies and chances of legal issues.

Scheduling of the Production

Having organised delivery schedules and keeping to them is another risk involved with sourcing overseas. It is important to discuss with your supplier the most comfortable delivery arrangement that is less likely to fail.

Make them understand that late deliveries impact the production cost since they attract unplanned fees. For example, products might eventually be shipped by air instead of a previously arranged ocean transport. That significantly raises the cost which counts as a loss on your company.

Therefore, consistent and clear communication channels are essential when dealing with a supplier overseas. You should add an extra 1 or 2 days to the initial delivery time to account for unexpected issues that might happen.

Logistics

Ensuring smooth logistics is challenging when buying from a manufacturing company in a distant location or foreign market. The global supply chain is quite intricate and you must ascertain that your supplier has contingency plans if the unexpected occurs. For instance, there could be a roadblock or breakdown of delivery vehicles.

Try to always have a plan B to minimise the ripple effect on your business should there be problems on the purchase and delivery process. Even the biggest companies occasionally experience downtimes in their services but they mostly have measures in place to mitigate the impact.

The Delivery Costs Can Mount Up

The expected delivery cost and the number of factors that can affect the estimated value are important considerations when sourcing overseas. It does not matter whether the supplying company is in the EU region or farther away. Ensure you make provisions for changes in delivery costs.

Some factors that affect the cost of delivery include unexpected issues or breakdowns during transportation and changes in prices as a result of delays.It is necessary therefore to include or estimate these costs as part of the production cost that determines your selling price. Failing to plan properly for delivery costs can force you to sell at a loss.

In Summary

To recap, the main benefits of sourcing goods and services from overseas suppliers include cost savings, access to skilled labour, increased manufacturing capability and the ability to create new products. Whilst businesses should also be aware of the risks, so they can take steps to mitigate any impact of them on their business, overseas sourcing can be a great way to diversify and expand business operations for any size company.

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