Clothing brands usually allocate the task of procuring fabrics or finished garments to their sourcing or product managers. Sourcing managers often negotiates prices with garment manufacturers to create an advantageous contract for both parties. However, too much negotiation might put off the manufacturers as they perceive them as manipulative.
The top garment manufacturers generally have tie-ups with different clients. They understand the design expectations and provide fabrics per their recommendations. Therefore, new designers should negotiate the terms and prices carefully to avoid missing out on the best manufacturers in the industry.
Here are some things that clothing brands can follow while collaborating with garment manufacturers:
When a clothing brand's sourcing manager is clear regarding the budget, materials, finishing, and price range, it is easy for platforms like Fashinza to help connect them with the best garment manufacturers. The garment manufacturers can provide an exact quote only if all these priorities are put forth upfront.
While the sourcing manager shares the clothing brand's design and finishing expectations, garment manufacturers should suggest materials and finishing methods that suit their price points. During the meetings, the sourcing managers are advised to prepare for price negotiations and inquire about the MOQs (Minimum Order Quantities).
Sourcing managers should not reveal their industry experience in the first meeting since some manufacturers could use their inexperience to quote a high price. Instead, they should try and demonstrate their brand's bright plans for the future.
They can reveal how they will leverage crowdfunding platforms to raise funds or how digital marketing will help them evolve into a bigger brand. These strategies will convince the garment manufacturers to join the journey with the brand and negotiate on pricing.
A sense of mutual trust and respect helps businesses collaborate smoothly over a long period. Therefore, the project managers should maintain a healthy relationship with the manufacturers.
Also, sourcing managers should not push manufacturers to manufacture at a low cost. It might force them to provide samples without including the tech pack, which might induce mistakes at the production stage.
If brands expect manufacturers to not compromise on the quality and delivery dates, they should not compromise on the pricing either. When sourcing managers conduct deals in haste or without respecting the manufacturer, they might not be able to continue the agreement for a long time.
Sourcing managers should understand that a garment manufacturer or a supplier is not a friend, and therefore, one should maintain a steady working relationship. To do that, they should connect with them over the phone and email for seamless communication.
Sourcing managers can ask them for details of their manufacturing process to show that they are concerned about their work. Also, appreciating their quality and meeting deadlines will foster a good working relationship.
Sometimes, brands might need multiple quotes to decide on their final order. For example, brands that want apparel made from sustainable and eco-friendly manufacturing techniques can get numerous quotes concerning eco-friendly processes.
Sourcing managers can discuss their preference for eco-friendly materials and manufacturing processes with the manufacturers in advance. Even apparels that are vegan or cruelty-free are in huge demand these days. Therefore, brands want to collaborate with manufacturers who understand market trends and adjust their manufacturing processes accordingly.
The sourcing managers can adopt the below strategies to get precise price quotes from the garment manufacturers:
The sourcing managers should provide a complete tech pack to the manufacturers. It must include all details regarding the designs, colors, measurements, embellishments, and branding (if required). If multiple products are manufactured, they must provide the above information for each product.
Also, they must add the quantity so that the manufacturer can estimate the manufacturing cost required for each item. It is suggested that they create a quantity breakdown table after mentioning the tech pack details.
To reduce the overall manufacturing cost, it is always better to compare the price quotes of multiple suppliers. Therefore, the sourcing managers should not be in a hurry while choosing them. They can create a list of suppliers for different products to evaluate the overall cost for each item. Having a list of suppliers also provides them with a backup in case the first supplier has some issues in fulfilling the brand requirements.
Once the manufacturers or suppliers are shortlisted, sourcing managers should discuss things like MOQ with them. Also, they must ensure whether the MOQ changes concerning fabric, color, and size of the garments. The payment terms also should be discussed at this stage.
Brands must urge manufacturers to give them a breakup of all the manufactured items. This would help them get the per unit cost for each apparel.
Apart from that, they must also request a breakup by BOM (Bill of Materials). It would include the details of the primary and secondary fabrics and sub-components like embellishments, packaging cost, labeling price, etc., needed to produce the final product.
Brands must compare the price quotations to find the one that suits them the best. They must finalize the supplier if they have requested individual quotes for each garment.
If a particular manufacturer offers the best deal for most garments, it could be profitable to provide them with the entire assignment. However, brands usually order their first assignment from multiple manufacturers to find the best among them.
A garment manufacturer might be collaborating with multiple brands at the same time. Therefore, sourcing managers must keep track of every request.
It is a good idea to call the manufacturer directly instead of waiting for their reply via text or email. Else, initiate the communication over email, and if there is no response after 48 working hours, follow it up with a call.
At Fashinza, we help clothing brands connect with leading suppliers and clothing manufacturers in the market. The clothing brands can access all their manufacturing requirements from design to delivery on our portal.
The entire process can be strictly monitored from our tech-based platform, including sampling and garment manufacturing to quality checking and delivering the products. In addition, brands can now contact garment manufacturers and request price quotes from our mobile app.
Learn more about how this app works and find all your business needs under one roof!