«Hobbyka» – garden furniture production
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Recommendations on how to choose a park and garden equipment supplier.

In this article we give recommendation on how to choose a supplier of municipal park and garden equipment. It is the most important aspect and you should pay particular attention to it. Not only your financial risks, but also the company image depends on it, which is very important when working with government agencies and corporate clients. This article describes some aspects that are difficult to formulate within the framework of the Article " we have already published. Frequently asked questions ".

Sometimes many of our potential clients ask what is the difference between our products and products of any other manufacturers? Generally, « people, who have some doubts », may visit the manufacturing shops of our colleagues, see the samples of the manufactured products, manufacturing facilities, scale and methods of production. Almost all manufacturers are willing to contact with the consumer and don’t refuse the consumer to visit their manufacturing shops, unless they have something to conceal. As the phrase goes, “Cognition comes through comparison”. We are gratified that after visiting our manufacturing site, our potential clients, usually, become our regular customers or business partners.

In our previous reviews we repeatedly discussed how to choose park and garden equipment. In this article we would like to provide information about the difference between plant-manufactured products and products of backyard production. Of course, many people, who buy products from suspicious manufacturers, do not even think that the component parts, as well as the manufacturing cycle are not properly performed. And in the end it has an adverse effect on the product quality in general.

Minimization of rent expenses on manufacturing and storage areas means that when the “manufacturer” has no opportunity to install equipment required for proper preparation of the component parts. The products are manufactured in violation of the process standards and are fitted up “by feel”. Manual processing, polishing and painting of wooden elements result in uneven distribution of paint or vanish, lead to “scoring” and formation of nap on the wood that has a negative impact on quality of the product. Such product may not be called “commercial” in respect of quality, because the manufactured products are of different color and dimensions. The manufacturers performing the so called “backyard” production try to save on everything, just look at the benches in the nearest yard, some of them are not even covered by vanish.

Finished products (if any) are stored without observing appropriate norms and standards. In such situation some companies refer to third parties, which leads to extension of the production period and, what is as important, to the increase of overhead charges that will ultimately make the item more expensive.

Cost savings in labor make one person to perform different functions: be a turner, a mechanic, a carpenter, a designer and even a loader. Of course, you may think that it is convenient, and that the worker knows the manufacturing cycle from A to Z, but, normally, such multi-purposeness enhances the risk of making a mistake on each phase of their activity. When proper control is absent, such mistake is likely to be discovered when you decide to assemble the product yourselves. And what if the product is an Anniversary gist for your close relative, who lives in different city? The situation will be quite unpleasant. Exceptions from the rule are “craftsmen”, such as blacksmiths, mahogany workers, etc. They are real professionals, but, as a rule, their works are very expensive and are made in single quantities.

As for plant-manufactured product it is necessary to use component parts and paint coatings for industrial applications, observe technological norms, many of which can be achieved only by using high-quality equipment. Each plant worker shall perform his/her own role.

Responsibility for appropriate quality of the product is formed by responsible attitude of each employee to the assigned task. Low level of responsibility due to general savings results in low quality of the manufactured products. Be careful while choosing park and garden furniture manufacturers.

If you have to choose among several city furniture suppliers, you should carry out a comparative analysis. It will form your final impression of the cooperation and financial risks. Then, we would like to point out some aspects you need to pay your attention to when choosing a partner for park and garden equipment delivery:

  • Visit the factories of the potential suppliers. Of course, your will not be able go deep insight in the manufacturing process thoroughly (everyone has secrets), but even passing a glance will give you an impression about the manufacturing scale. Moreover, it will give you an opportunity to compare the prospective suppliers and will make it easier to decide. Office visiting is also recommended, though the impressions from it will be incomplete.
  • Ask the supplier to provide you with a sample of the product for examination. It will allow you to be sure that the product is of high quality, though, it may be the only high-quality product " manufactured externally ". Yet, upon the final delivery, it will be easier for you to raise claims against the supplier.
  • Try to postpone the final payment for the order, until you have a look at the total consignment of the ordered goods. Most manufacturers require 100% prepayment for the order. It’s OK, we also try to work according to this scheme. However, if the products are customized, and if their volume is big enough, we may grant a deferral of payment as follows: 70% prepayment, 30% additional payment before dispatch of the goods. Before shipment you may review the quantity and quality of the products. In this case you will make yourself safe from supply of goods of poor quality.
  • Always conclude an equipment purchase contract. Irrespective of the scope of supply, production terms and weather conditions, you should always conclude contracts. Of course, it won’t improve quality of the products, but, firstly, it disciplines the supplier, and secondly, it will help you to safe your face before your customers in case of breach of the supply terms and conditions. Having this documents you may even apply to court, if necessary.
  • Pay attention to the organizational and legal form of the company. LLC, CJSC, OJSC, IE (Individual Entrepreneur), IUE (individual unincorporated entrepreneur), etc. Generally speaking, these letters in the company name are not be very important for the customer, but may make some first impression of the manufacturer’s scale. Though even a LLC may be very small, as well as an IE may be large enough. The only thing that is recommended to pay attention to is the tax system in which the legal entity works. It may involve some accounting expenses. You shall consult your Chief Accountant and learn if it is necessary for you or not. We wrote about it in the Article " STS Taxpayers " and VAT: unfavorable deception?
  • Ask the manufacturer to provide you with the Municipal Products Certificates. In most cases, the exemption letters confirming that the products are not subject to compulsory certification is enough for the customer. However, sometimes, especially speaking about governmental institutions, Certificates of the Products Safety are required. As a rule, it is necessary to have park equipment installed at children’s playgrounds and in the places of public resort. Requirements to such objects are increased, and the customer tries to make himself safe. Moreover, presence of such certificate with the manufacturer indirectly confirms high quality of the products.

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