How easy will it be to return to business as was common for Clothing industry, Suppliers and buyers once the intensity of COVID-19 breaks down?
Clothing retailers and makes round the world face decrease in sales. Fashion store closures and mounting stock inventory thanks to the Caoronavirus pandemic.
The cancelled fashion orders worth world dollars. While a few factories are just a step faraway from shutting down their operations. But what happens when it all blows over? Can the broken trust between buyer and supplier relationship repaired?
The depth of the relationship is more important than length.Ahmed Ali Al-amoody
Trust Built the relationship between Business and supplier. Losing a Clothing industry supplier might be a big setback for any fashion industry brands. However with some time and effort broken supplier relations can be rekindled, which is profitable to both parties.
Buyer and suppliers share a symbiotic strategic relationship. The undertaking of any big project is a mighty task, which cannot be accomplished without trust from the supplier. Having a trusting supplier provides many beneficial upshots such as; it decreases transaction costs, enhances the possibility for continuous process improvement and heightens the prospects for innovation.
Procurement companies and professionals alike are always hunting for techniques to review, concretize & improve upon relations with their suppliers.
Role played by Trust on Clothing Industry
The building of trust meaningful relationships between Fashion Suppliers and buyers. Has played an important role in the success of the worldwide Clothing industry.
With a big divide emerging between those companies that are prepared to figure closely with their supply partners, to mitigate the consequences of the downturn in trade. and people whose immediate reaction is to cancel orders, seemingly no matter the impact that this course of action will have.
The cancellation, the scaling back of, or delay to current production orders with suppliers. Has been further compounded by many companies withholding payment for goods that are shipped. Or insisting upon longer payment terms than were originally agreed when orders were placed. These actions have put many garment manufacturers worldwide during a precarious financial situation.
The importance of trust in establishing meaningful relationships between those folks involved within the apparel manufacturing industry. and our customers is paramount. I view it’s because the single most vital think about building any successful business or relationship.
A customer that trusts its supplier should hear that company’s issues. Likewise, a supplier that trusts its customers will strive to try to its absolute best, even within the toughest of trading conditions.
Due to the very nature of the business, Where speed-to-market is a major contributing factor to the success of an apparel line in-store. Many manufacturers have foregone the traditional payment methods that take time and hinder the speed of the production process.
Gone is the heavy reliance on payment in advance or letters of credit (basically a guarantee from a bank that a particular seller will receive a payment due from a particular buyer) between Clothing manufacturers and their customers.
Instead, orders are often processed by many manufacturers (sometimes even without an official purchase order) at the bequest of a customer, because that customer has earned the trust of their supplier over the years.
The manufacturer will undertake to procure the necessary fabrics and sundries for the production of the required goods and will complete the production to the required standards demanded by the buyer – all at his own expense.
The manufacturer will then ship the ordered product and await payment from the customer. Bearing the expense of overheads, workers’ salaries, business rates and amenity charges in the knowledge that payment will be forthcoming.
This was a simple system, common place in the Apparel & Fashion industry. And one founded on the strength of the relationship and the trust emanating from, quite often, many years of working together.
The COVID-19 pandemic has, unfortunately, laid bare the fragility of these relationships.
The long-term impact
Once the COVID-19 pandemic is over. We will see what long-term damage has inflicted to these customer/supplier relationships.
But one thing is for sure, the wounds will take time to heal. While Clothing manufacturers will be wary in the business that they develop in the future with their clients.
One of the most precious things in the world of business is trust. It can take years to earn and only a matter of seconds to lose.
The ever-evolving events of the last few weeks. Have damaged the trust that existed between apparel brands and retailers and their suppliers. Together the apparel community can overcome these difficult times. But it will require understanding, the rebuilding of relationships, and support from all sides for many months to come.
To restore some semblance of a trusted working relationship. Customers that value their relationship with their manufacturing partners. Need to acknowledge the predicament facing garment factories in the supply chain.
By entering into discourse and planning the months from a production and compensation viewpoint. Customers will be able to preserve their relationships with their supply chain partners. Allowing them to survive financially during this crisis and earning their respect as a worthy business partner.
Apparel manufacturers around the globe, are fully aware of the devastating effects that COVID-19 has had across all areas of life. They should also be cooperative to support their customers during these difficult times.
Even if in the future the orders might be reduced. It is the responsibility of all apparel manufacturers to support work with their customers to ensure that business can move forward when this crisis is finally averted.