WHAT MAKE AN APPAREL MANUFACTURE SUCCESSFUL
- Material manufacturing industry: enable apparel manufacturers to develop new kind of materials and access into new innovation in materials industry.
No one can cover for all stages of an industry especially in apparel industry. A manufacturer would always need support from other services. Supporting service plays a crucial role in an apparel manufacturer’s success. So what kind of supporting service that an apparel manufacturer’s need?
- Firstly, they would need the support from yarn & fabric suppliers. Since there are plenty kinds of fabric used to make a piece of garment, hardly a fabric manufacturer can meet all demands of their garment production neither a fabric manufacturer. Therefore, each apparel manufacturer needs to cooperate with many material suppliers to have their available support. Especially, when a new kind of fabric is needed to be developed, the importance of a material suppliers are double. If the supporting service allows the apparel manufacturer be flexible in developing new fabrics, their production or manufacturing service will be much more adaptive. Without those supporting service, a garment manufacturer will never be able to provide an OEM, ODM, or a full package service.
- Not only fabric, supporting service from accessory suppliers are also necessary to every apparel manufacturers. The variety of accessory is even more complicated than it of fabric. That’s reason why there would be no apparel manufacturer without their supporting service.
- Next, there is a dozen of other supporting service like dyeing, printing, embroidery…. that they will also need. It’s would be a huge investment if you would like to own a dyeing house. Even many fabrics manufacturer do not have their own dyeing house. In other words, it’s obvious that an apparel manufacturer will need dyeing house’s help. It’s the same logic that they also prefer supporting service provided by their sub-contractors rather than their own investment.
- The importance of machines an technical equipment makes it indispensable with every apparel producers. There are 2 options for them to maintain the availability of all those machines and equipment. They can choose to have their own in-house technicians and a specific plan of inspection and maintenance or they can use external service.
- An other fundamental supporting service for apparel manufacturing is Logistics which can affect a lot on their manufacturing cost. For example, if a garment manufacturer locates their factory in Africa, the labor cost might be super low but the logistics cost must be huge as it’s so far from main global material sources like China, Taiwan, or Mexico, Brazil,… They will have to pay a lot for the shipping fee in this case. But that’s not all. It might take a Vietnamese manufacturer, for example, only several days to be supplied with sufficient accessories and fabrics while a manufacturer in Africa have to wait for several weeks. The importance of express service is another example. Traditional postal service also takes several weeks to transfer a parcel to another country while express shipping service can handle it in a few days.
Country comparative advantage
Globalization changes how countries involve in international values chain a lot. Every countries make the most effective use of their comparative advantages. Apparel manufacturing is a labor-intensive sector. A country which has an abundant source of young, cheap and skillful labor force including high quality and manual labor will have a big advantage in this industry. FTAs also bring a lot of advantage to a country as cargoes can be exchanged freely from one country to the other without prevented or restricted by neither tariff nor non-tariff barriers. In other words, they will have relative advantage compared to the others. That’s why every manufacturing countries would like to have FTAs with their main markets.
Experience is an other important aspect. In a country where Apparel manufacturing can be considered as their traditional industry like Vietnam, for example, it will be easier to find a yarn, fabric or garment expert. Even their manual labor has a good concept this industry. It means that, there is no need to invest too much in education and training to create a skillful labor force for apparel manufacturing industry in Vietnam. This can be considered an unbeatable advantage.
In fact, every factors that help a country produce apparel cheaper than the others would be their comparative advantage. As mentioned above, location is an important aspect as it decides weather a country have advantage in global logistics system. That’s also one of the biggest reason why countries sign FTAs with each other.
Law and security sometimes can be a country’s comparative advantage. There are a lot of risks relating to law, politic and security that ruin those countries’ economy & external economic relationship. Working with a apparel in a country having unstable politic and security will never be safe.
Their own Capacity
Although locating in a country where every conditions are favorable for apparel production, that’s still not enough to be a good apparel manufacturer. His performance depends a lot on their own capability.
A capable manufacturer usually has their own facilitated factory equipped with sufficient modern machines and technologies. A smart manufacture will also be very smart in their investment and they are also strong enough in terms of finance to do that.
The number of production lines they have in their factory can tell you their production capacity. However, lots of manufacturers in Vietnam are using sub-contractors’ factory to produce their products. In this case, their management capability must be examined and considered. Normally, a good apparel manufacturer usually acquire lots of international certificates and comply to many international standards. It is also a good evaluation criteria to determine an apparel manufacturer’s capacity..
- Strategy of equipment & technology investment
Every companies especially manufacturing companies need to invested a lot in machine and technology. Modern technology can be a strong motivation to boost the productivity of manufacturing companies. By contrast, the shortage of machine or technology prevents apparel manufactures from being proactive in their productions and from seizing the potential opportunities.
The ability to dig into the data to get insights that support the decision-making process is far more important with manufacturers nowadays. New information technology allows companies tap into new business analyzing models that traditional models theories can’t help. Furthermore, not only supporting the decision-making process, information technology also assists business process. Information is the only thing that connect separate department in a company to make it a unified organization. Therefore, investing in a strong system of information technology as well as a strong labor force to master it and tap its potential are vital.
- Company’s service & products strategy
There are 2 kinds of apparel manufacturer. One produces and sells his own products and another helps other people to produce. In fact, the second one is a service supplier. So their service will play a decisive role in their success. In apparel industry, a manufacturer can provide many kinds of service like CM, CMPT, FOB, OEM, ODM and a full-package service. The more supportive and flexible their service is, the more customer’s demand they can meet. You can see that, a CM service supplier is able to cut and make only. It means that their partner must prepare everything for them from material development, sourcing, designing & pattern making, and do inbound logistics… However, an OEM service supplier does much better. All mentioned stages would be combined into their service. That would help you save lots of time and expense compared to using different services for each of separate stages.
Both kinds of manufacturers need to consider about what kind of product they would focus on producing as it’s requisite to make their decision of investment in suitable machines, technologies and human resource. It also helps determine their targeted customers. In other words, it also limits people and market that their service will serve. Therefore, It also plays a fundamental role in their success.
Their Marketing Activities
- How they make their customer’s know them and trust on their service:
With an apparel manufacturer, how they make people know and trust their service is the most important function of their marketing activities. Capable manufacturer often take part in international trade fairs to introduce their products and service to their potential customers while the others choose to promote their brands on the internet.
- How they understand their customer’s need
Trend is just one of several ways to meet their customer’s need. The availability of materials, the short lead-time, quality products, the ability to meet special technical requirements, … all depend on how they understand their customer’s need. To get an insight of their customer’s needs, high quality market researches must be conducted.
- How they make changes in their service and products.
An apparel manufacturer does not need to be a master in doing market research by themselves. They can pay for a good service to help them do that. But the importance is that they carry out what they need to do and change to adapt their services and products to the customers’ needs according to the insights they got from their market research programs.
- The ability to keep updated with new trends
A good apparel manufacturer would always keep themselves updated with latest product trends. With manufacturers who produce and sell their own products, keeping updated with new trends is essential. It doesn’t mean that a manufacturers who help other people to produce their product do not need to follow the trends. Before each season of manufacturing, they need to work with their material suppliers to develop new kinds of fabric that would be used for the new trends. Sometimes, they also needs to prepare new machines and technologies for special requirement to produce hot trendy products. They also need to have information of new trends to consult their customers for a more supportive service.
- Production administration
Production administration decides an apparel manufacturer’s proficiency.
What, When, Where and How production is conducted are important questions that every manufacturers must anwer. Some do much better than the others and they get success. Production administration takes charge of finding the best answers (including best solutions, plans and management…) for those questions. An apparel manufacturer can’t survive and keep developing without a good system of production administration.
+ Quality control
There will always be an instability in every manufacturing process. That leads to the instability in the quality of the products produced. That’s why every manufacturers needs a system of quality controlling to prevent as much as problem from arising and stabilize the quality of their products. However the quality controlling system is itself an unstable system. That’s why we have both good & bad quality controlling systems. Apparel manufacturing companies are commonly applying international quality controlling standards to their system such as ISO, OEKO-TECH… They are widely known and recognized as reputed standards to classify manufacturer’s quality controlling system. You can trust on manufacturers who are applying those standards and having those certificates
+ Optimize productivity
Not only having a good quality controlling system, a good apparel manufacturers also know how to optimize their productivity. Each manufacture have his own method to optimize their productivity. Some choose to invest in hi-tech machines, some choose to focus on training their workers to master their techniques while some choose to combine both. Making their production plan that fit well with the capacity of their production lines is also a very efficient method of optimizing productivity. Some manufacturers have tools to do that so they can carry out their production very proficiently.
+ Problem resolve
Problem solving is far more valued capability that an apparel manufacturer need to strengthen. Human resource plays the most important role in this case. Capable apparel manufacturers usually have in-house experts to be proactive in problem resolving. Other resources are also important as human resource needs those support to smoothly handle everything.
- Human resource administration (mission, values, culture…)
How people and departments in an organization cooperate together will decide the majority of their success. A reliable manufacturer will have a clear mission, values and culture those are guides for every of their all plans, actions and activities.
Thygesen Textile Vietnam – A reliable apparel manufacturer providing OEM, One-stop-Shop service to the global market.
With 85 years of experience in this knitted fabrics & garment manufacturing industry, Thygesen Textile Vietnam has built up a strong manufacturing capacity backed by a broad network of materials suppliers, modern factory, skillful labor force, professional administration to seize all opportunities gained from the advantages of locating our factory in Vietnam. We welcome all customers including knitted garment producers, wholesalers, vendors, distributors, retailers, start-ups come with us and see how our service can flexibly serve you and enhance your business.