It’s unlikely you will receive a public declaration of charges by a ‘consultancy‘, which is akin to asking how many drops of water are in a bucket. Charges (whether hourly, fixed fee, or on a commission basis) can vary that much.
Here in China many dubious consulting companies claim to offer the services you require, so the first box you need to tick is making sure the sourcing consultancy you eventually work with can reduce your overall costs, reduce your time to market, and improve the quality of your product, thus making the charges worth it. Actually, the sourcing consulting company should be able to save you and your company money overall, even with their charges.
In general, experienced and reliable sourcing consultants, who are not ‘fly by night,’ should make the overall supplier identification, negotiation, inspection and shipping (product import) processes faster, cheaper, and result in better quality control.
Simply put, when it comes to separating fact from fiction says Niall O’Reilly, a China business consultant with over 24 years ‘on the ground’ China business experience:
“If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional China business consultant to advise you wait until you hire an amateur to do the job!”
So you may now be asking yourself “how do I distinguish average sourcing consultants from the professional?”
The average sourcing consultancy will only contact factories and manage communication between you and the factory…and little else.
The best professional sourcing consultancy will employ its considerable experience to evaluate the strategy of your company and engage in a strategic sourcing process that ensures your particular company needs are met. They will not only manage communication with factories in China, but they will anticipate potential risks, and either resolve the problems or develop contingency plans for such issues before they occur. If unforeseen problems do occur, and here in China they will occur, the sourcing consultancy is there to solve the problem and improve procedures so it is controlled in the future.
The Chinese Proverb “一分钱一分货” (pronounced “yi fen qian, yi fen huo”), which translates literally as “one cent gives you one cent’s worth of goods”, succinctly sums up the answer: “you get what you pay for”!
Source: Accurate China Blog – http://www.accuratelimited.com/blog.view.php?id=aFcU1cUL1jw=
So here is a public declaration of Accurate Group’s consulting fees: We have a basic charge for the opening consultation and initial advice. Thereafter, for a formal engagement our fees are structured according to our clients specific requirements. The fee arrangements can be hourly, contingency, flat-fee, or commission-based.
Managing Director, Accurate Group – Ireland China Product & Business Development (Export Sourcing Import) Consultancy
Tel: +353 1271 1830 / +86 152 5719 4468
This Accurate China Insight originally appeared in the Hangzhou Business Network (HBN) forum: