It's Show Time!  Will You Be Able to Provide On-Time Delivery?


Consultants Corner News Consulting Manufacturing Clothing



 By:  Bruce S. Berton

It's show time!  MAGIC, ASAP, ASR and the many local regional shows are here again.

I know that most of you have done your pre-selling prior to these shows and now you can finalize orders with the big boys, see customers that you have not been able to see, or because you are so HOT,  you can launch your new fashion lines and make a statement. 

All categories of apparel, accessories, textiles, and performance gear will be shown in mass for the retailers
selection. The Sales, Marketing, Merchandising, and Design Departments have been working hard to reach their goals and objectives. I wish you all good selling and successful bookings!

As we are all aware in this fast paced industry, the keys to your success will be in making all of the required changes (no matter how small), getting your product made to your quality specifications, obtaining the necessary financing, and finally, providing ON-TIME DELIVERY.

I do not have to go through all the issues of quota and the sourcing changes that must made in this ever- changing market of regulations. I am telling you that your current costs may have to be revised (always upward) due to the many variables in our global economy -- surcharges for oil costs in your logistical supply lines, lack of energy to produce your goods as scheduled, or someone else being willing to pay more for your production space!

You cannot leave all of your decisions to the infrastructure you have built over the years. Attitudes are changing within the foreign cultures (i.e., making money); the factories must make profits and they are all looking to secure the production from you, the owners or manufacturing management that will make the final decision in both confirmations and payment of goods produced.

I am sorry to say that you will be traveling more, and that you will need all of the facts at your finger tips in order to make good decisions at their facilities and not use second hand, filtered information.

Many of you will find new resources, and you will have to set up training and teach them everything from A to Z.

Even the retailers are going to be very selective as to where your production is, and what infrastructure you have in place to assure On-Time Delivery.

You have heard all of this before; you must have balanced production capabilities. Please do not put
all of your eggs in one basket.

You will say, I am small and I am not one of the BIG BOYS.  I will then say that you will have to spend MORE time at your source of production, to make sure with your own eyes that you are on schedule.

Another problem might arise when your production has been sent to a subcontractor to make sure your manufacturer delivers on time. This happens more than you think, without your knowledge. You had better make sure the subcontractor can do the work, and do not rely on your manufacturer saying that he has worked with the contractor for years.

I am like the fly on the wall that has listened to all the production problems discussed in your weekly meetings (if you have them)! Placing blame or stating, If I had only known about the problem sooner, will not help when you lose the confidence of your customer or possibly lose your customer altogether.

You want to be the KING or QUEEN of your business, not the KING or QUEEN of CHARGEBACKS! Need I say more?

All of the show sales expenses, all of the merchandising/design expenses, and all of your expected gross margins will be lost because of late delivery.

The professionals at Stonefield Josephson have over 100 years of experience, with solutions for lowering risk factors and enabling ON-TIME DELIVERY.

Bruce S. Berton is a business and management consultant with Stonefield Josephson, Inc., a leading regional consulting and accounting firm with offices in Santa Monica, San Francisco, Walnut Creek and Mexico City. The information in this column is of a general nature.  Readers inquiries are welcome; and may be sent to Bruce Berton, at Stonefield Josephson, Inc., 2049 Century Park East Suite 400 Los Angeles, California 90067 310-432-7437 Direct
866-225-4511 Toll Free
310-432-7519 Fax Los Angeles
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San Francisco
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