Chinese New Year starting on February 1 this year will place huge pressure on the global supply chain. During this annual celebration, production in Chinese factories halts to a grind, and the ensuing result is a major impact on the already fragile global supply chain. All companies need to consider the impact the Chinese New Year may have on their businesses and start planning well in advance.
If you’ve missed the window to avoid shutdowns, don’t panic. Novi CEO & Co-Founder Kimberly Shenk offers business owners the following interim advice:
1. Split your orders
Expedite your shipment by getting part of your orders through the air, and the rest by boat. Since air shipping can be quite costly, make sure you have some room in your budget to take the risk. In other words, only order materials that are critical to meet your launch date. Doing so will hold you over until you receive the rest of your shipment by boat.
2. Try a different region
This seems obvious, but it must be said: try sourcing similar materials from a different region— all the better if it’s domestic! Again, place a smaller order so that you can have enough product to launch— enough to hold you over until you receive the rest of your delayed shipment.
3. Try a different supplier
While easier said than done, it’s best to just switch to a different supplier altogether. It’s an issue of cost-benefit analysis: you may find that paying just a little more for a different product or smaller MOQ is outweighed by the revenue earned from a timely launch.
Next year, start business planning in advance for the Chinese New Year. Kimberly Shenk offers the following tips for best business preparation:
1. Work with trusted suppliers
This is a given— however, trust extends beyond just quality materials and fair pricing. The best suppliers and manufacturers will outline the impact of any supply chain disruptions and make sure you know upfront about any possible issues with timing. In return, be sure to clearly communicate your brand’s own timeline and expectations.
2. Get information on lead times and pricing ASAP
While data transparency on sustainability is paramount, so is information on pricing and lead times. Be sure to factor in lead times in your timeline, along with some extra “cushion” time to be sure you can take care of any disruptions if they happen. Additionally, budgeting will be much easier with upfront pricing.
3. Consider sourcing locally
Sourcing materials locally can have both major cost and sustainability benefits. Shorter distances mean fewer fossil fuels and other resources used for shipping, as well as lower freight costs. And of course, you can better avoid shipping disruptions caused by the Chinese New Year.
The good news about Novi:
Luckily, Novi can help. Our marketplace offers materials from trusted suppliers in various countries such as Spain, USA, South Korea, and more. With upfront pricing and lead times, we can help expedite your decision-making. Plus, with rapid sampling and low MOQs, we’ll help you reach the timely launch you strive for without breaking the bank.