Preparing for a 3rd Party Inspection-The to do List/What to Do

August 23, 2022

PART 1: Overview

Usually the time a quality inspector can spend in a factory is very limited on an inspection day. Therefore, complete preparation is very important for both the factory to be inspected and the inspector. Today we will look at what assistance a factory can offer to a quality inspector throughout the inspection process.

  1. Before an inspection:
    • Promptly confirm the inspection date and location
    • Meet and pick up the inspector from their arrival location to ensure they get to the right location and avoid delays
    • Make sure that the products to be inspected are all located in the same facility
  2. During inspection:
    • Provide an appropriate, well-lit room for inspection
    • Move selected cartons to the inspection room
    • Provide necessary inspection tools or testing equipment
    • Open the carton under supervision from inspector
    • Re-pack inspected products into the carton
    • Assist in some on-site tests under the inspector’s supervision, such as the assembly test for furniture
    • Print the necessary documents, such as AQF service conditions and summary result of inspection findings
  3. After an inspection:
    • Send out the sample as soon as possible if sample picking was necessary
    • Drop the inspector at the local bus station, especially if the factory is not out of the way

By doing the above three things, the factory is helping to make sure that the quality inspector is able to focus on his/her main job, i.e., identifying defects and non-conformities (if any).

PART 2: Preparing the Products in the Warehouse 

Since the role of the factory is very important in assisting the quality inspection, factories need to be aware of the stacking and placement requirements of products in their warehouses for the coming inspection.

All cartons must be accessible for selection. Access to cartons means that the inspector can either:

  1. See every individual carton in the packing list directly or
  2. Direct the factory to fetch any designated carton in the packing list under the inspector’s direction and view.

It’s strongly preferred that the factory stacks cartons in a way that inspector can see every carton. Below are some examples of such an arrangement:


Figure 1


Figure 2


Figure 3

If the carton stacking obscures any carton (Figures 4 & 5), then the factory needs to re-arrange the cartons to follow Figure 1, or Figure 2, or Figure 3 (above). Such action needs to be completed within a within reasonable time to avoid any delay of inspection or overtime.


Figure 4


Figure 5

Note that if the factory does not support re-arranging all cartons so that every carton can be seen but agrees to help the inspector to do random carton selection, then the inspection can proceed.

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