Reinforcing your Supply Chain with MTS
Factory Compliance Audits, and Inspections(FCAI)
MTS is Your Strategic Partner in Streamlining International Trade!

As a manufacturer, agent, exporter, importer, distributor or retailer, your primary objective revolves around one main goal: obtaining the best quality merchandise, with the highest speed-to-market efficiency, for the least amount of money possible. There’s an extremely slim margin for error in order to successfully plan and accomplish this objective. All too often certain critical deadlines, including ship dates are missed. The net result is cost overruns, product delays, and strained relationships with your suppliers. Fortunately, the tools necessary to protect yourself from the unexpected are readily available regardless of your factories physical location. Factory & Security Assessments, Product Inspections and Social Compliance Audits involves a team of MTS experts visiting a supplier, determining their production capabilities to manufacture an order within a specific time frame, and achieve the level of quality you expect, while not engaging in substandard or unethical business practices.

 

Partnering with MTS for FCAI field services will greatly assist with ensuring:

  • Your companies brand image remains protected and preserved
  • Timely shipments meet contractual requirements
  • Vendor compliance with quality and safety standards
  • Products meet all applicable legal requirements for country of destination
  • That your company is aligning itself with suppliers who share the same social & environmental responsibility values
  • A safe & secure supply chain in compliance with US Customs & Border Patrol - Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT)
  • A reduction in customer product complaints & returns
  • Customer loyalty and repeat business

Our personalized approach to understanding each and every customer’s needs brings you a multitude of benefits. We can work with large daily volumes yet remain adaptable and flexible to the changing needs of your business. Senior Management, Subject Matter Experts, and Technical Resources are always readily available to discuss enhancements to your processes and procedures to ensure that you are utilizing the best tools and practices available in the industry today.

 

Factory Assessments (FA)

Our comprehensive Factory Assessment services assist our clients in monitoring and identifying manufacturing facilities that struggle to meet your product quality and process requirements. MTS uses proprietary, customizable, evaluation templates that are easy to read and understand. Our Factory Assessments services will provide critical information about a supplier’s factories, warehouses, capacities, capabilities, and subcontractor’s, amongst numerous other criteria.

 

At MTS, we understand that any product, at the right price point, meeting or exceeding quality levels, and delivered on time is the most successful formula for maximizing profitability. From raw material to retail merchandise, MTS can help you streamline your supply chain and reduce inefficiencies.

 

All MTS services, processes, and procedures are designed around full transparency, on-demand support, and easy interpretation by your quality assurance team. MTS FCAI services function as a vital support component in ensuring outstanding sourcing results. Where existing programs and infrastructures are not in place, we can work with clients to develop customized solutions to meet their specific needs.

 

As the needs of your business continues to evolve, rest assured that MTS has an assortment of assessment services to help you along the way. Our assessments are designed around a single principle; compliance with all applicable accreditations, certifications, legislation, regulations, standards, and industry best practices. Most importantly, we strive to reassure you that aligning your company with a particular factory doesn’t jeopardize your brand image.

 

The MTS Factory Assessment Team provides the following services on a daily basis:

 

Factory Quality Assessment

An onsite Factory Assessment of a suppliers Quality System includes evaluating elements such as: Facilities, Quality Control Systems, Incoming Inspections, In-Process Controls, Final Inspections, Packaging, Non-Conforming Materials, Communication, Document Control & Work Movement, and Handling of Complaints. This service also includes the reporting of general information provided by the factory such as monthly production capabilities, machinery operation and calibration, main products produced, and in-house/outsourced operations.

 

Security Assessment (C-TPAT)

The scope of the assessment is based on predetermined elements of US Custom’s and Border Patrol (CBP) Recommendations for Manufacturers in association with Custom's - Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) and includes the following areas: Facilities, Procedural Security, Physical Security, Container Security, Access Control, and Personnel Screening & Training.

 

Coaching Services

Our Factory Assessment experts can help to review the results of a Factory Assessment including a detailed explanation of non-conformity (Gap Analysis) against a client's Code of Conduct (or any other brand/retailing requirements). Highly competent MTS experts will meet with factory management, discuss a corrective action plan, prepare a strategy for implementation, estimate a completion date, and determine necessary resources to elevate the factory to an acceptable level of compliance. In order to raise awareness, training and coaching will involve all levels of factory personnel, from factory floor workers to senior management. Topics such as health & safety, work hours, fair wages, local labor contract laws, minimum employee age requirements, and any other areas of concern will be fully addressed. MTS will also arrange follow-up Audits to determine if any corrective action solutions remain at a substandard level.

 

Social Compliance/Code of Conduct Audit

MTS focuses on strategic partnerships and personalized service: offering the flexibility and attention of a smaller, specialized firm with the worldwide presence and capabilities of a traditional, global, third-party provider. Our extensive portfolio of services and solutions, empower clients with the highest level of experience, knowledge and resources to meet all of their social compliance needs.

 

Each member of the MTS FCAI management team has no less than 15 years of industry experience in executing Social Compliance and/ or Code of Conduct Audits. This highly skilled team provides the following key strengths to your supplier qualification initiatives:

  • Extensive experience and first-hand knowledge of effective social accountability practices including program development, management, and training
  • A proven track record of successful execution and implementation of compliance programs for major brands and retailers, including numerous fortune 500 companies
  • Executive experience in training, developing and management of an international network of professional auditors
  • Participation in both Governmental & Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) activities and initiatives that increase global awareness of socially and environmentally acceptable manufacturing practices
  • Experience working with various ethical sourcing initiatives such as the Disney ILS Program, Levi’s, ETI Sedex, Fair Labor Association, ICTI, BSCI, SAI, and WRAP, in addition to being actively involved in the development of the French Retailers Initiative Clause Sociale

Inspection

Retail success ultimately depends upon the satisfaction of your customers. That is why we offer several inspection services in different production stages to help you minimize the risk of receiving defective goods by intercepting any quality problems at the earlier stage possible.

Ideally, both manufacturer and retailer objectives should mirror one another. In actuality, they’re drastically different. A manufacturer prioritizes quantity over quality as their profits are volume driven. Whereas retailer profits are dependent upon the quality and salability of the merchandise. Therefore, closely monitoring the entire production processes is the only way to effectively bridge this disconnect and ensure there’s expertise to correct manufacturing errors as early as possible during production. Retailers need to be aware that even the slightest product defect can result in discounted pricing at point of sale, customer returns, negative brand perception, reduced customer loyalty and ultimately a net loss on an order.

 

Looking at today's world market, consumer savvy and demand for quality & safety is at an all-time high. Manufacturers, importers, exporters, distributors, and retailers have come to count on the comprehensive quality inspection services provided by MTS. We offer inspection services throughout all stages of production in order to make sure all parties are meeting their individual objectives. See below for a detailed explanation of the following Inspection services: Pre-production Inspection (PPI), Initial Production Inspection (IPI), During Production Inspection (DPI), Final Random Inspection (FRI), and Loading Supervision (LS).

 

Our Scope

  • Pre-Production Inspection (PPI)
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    A visual check on the quality of components, materials, and accessories at the beginning of production using client specifications and/ or reference samples. Also, random samples can be selected, sealed with tamper resistant MTS packaging tape, and sent to a local MTS lab for testing. The PPI thus permits timely corrections and improvement before mass production is initiated. Any non-conformity is immediately reported to ensure corrective actions are implemented and ship dates are not affected. (It is common for this service to be combined with an IPI).

     

  • Initial Production Inspection (IPI)
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    This inspection shall be performed at the initial stage of production when 20 to 50 units have been produced. Initial development products are checked for measurement and workmanship. At this stage, we can ensure our clients that products are in accordance with “approval samples” and the production method is correct. (It is common for this service to be combined with a PPI.)

     

  • During Production Inspection (DPI)
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    This inspection shall be performed at the approximate mid-stage of production when 30% to 50% of the ordered quantity, including all colors and sizes, have been manufactured. Random samples are examined for measurement and workmanship.

     

  • Final Random Inspection (FRI)
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    Once the merchandise is 80% produced, packed, and in all respects ready for shipment, samples will be randomly selected, based on a predetermined Sampling Plan. The products are then inspected to make sure that quality, quantity, packaging, and labeling conform to retailer specifications and/ or approval samples. MTS uses internationally recognized sampling procedures, such as ANSI/ ASQ Z 1.4, ISO 2859-1, BS 6001, NF X06-022 and DIN 40080, for a comprehensive, random, pre-shipment inspection.

     

  • Production Monitoring (PM)
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    In order to further reduce quality risks during production MTS can send veteran Quality Control (QC) staff with years of manufacturing experience into a factory with regular, even daily frequency. Depending on order size, desired technical expertise, and necessary production guidance during the manufacturing process seasoned MTS QC representatives are available with short notice to provide on-going feedback throughout the entire manufacturing process.

     

  • 100% Full Check Inspection (FC)
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    Do the terms “Bait & Switch” or “The Golden Sample” remind you of an order that was plagued with unimaginable quality issues? These nightmarish situations can be a thing of the past. MTS offers a unique service utilizing an elite, highly qualified QC team. A Full Check Inspection (FC) is available to provide a 100% product inspection. Every piece of product will be inspected and repacked. Cartons will be sealed with official MTS packaging tape to avoid tampering. All defective goods will be sorted out and an urgent summary of findings will be sent to our customers prior to shipping container loading.

     

  • Loading Supervision (LS)
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    MTS Loading Supervision service provides the only guarantee that goods are being properly packaged, loaded into containers, and stored for transportation. Both the condition of the shipping container and the master carton packaging will be evaluated as well as verifying the total number of packaging cartons. In addition, MTS will confirm master cartons contain all appropriate markings in accordance with retailer specifications and customs requirements for country of destination. (It is common for this service to be combined with an APS).

     

  • Assortment & Packaging Survey (APS)
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    This service is to ensure the quantity and/or the packaging assortment conforms to the original purchase order. (It is common for this service to be combined with a LS).

     

  • Fabric Inspection (FI)
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    Finished fabric will be inspected by a 4 point system. Significant flaws are noted and the general condition of the fabric is determined and recorded. (It is common for this service to be combined with an PPI).