Thinking

The Importance of Quality in Meeting Consumer Expectations: Interview with an Apparel Sourcing Expert (Part 2) 2/2

Q: Is quality not top of mind for factory leaders even when deciding about the purchase of trims, components, or machinery? Do they choose what will allow them to deliver superior quality, or is price always the prevailing factor?

 

A: While there are exceptions, I’ve found that quality is usually not among the top priorities when making these purchasing decisions.

For instance, consider machine buying, which is viewed primarily as a capital expenditure. When management needs to convince the owners or financial team to buy a machine, they will generate a report on ROI, including increased daily output, increased line efficiency percentage, and manpower reduction. Quality is not normally a significant part of an ROI report.

This is same criteria used when making most large investments.

Thinking

Q: What are the most frequent quality defects?

 

A: There are a wide range of defects, but I’ve found that the most common reasons for customers rejecting shipments include:

  • Poor packing issues
  • Stains
  • Holes
  • Missing and broken stitching
  • Shading

Shading

Given the accuracy of Pareto analysis, I’d estimate that 70 to 80 percent of defects and claims are created by these defect types. It is a shame, because this list has stayed the same year after year. And, until quality begins being top of mind for factory leaders, it will continue to stay the same.