The Bright Sparks Guide to Chinese New Year

As our working year begins, when summer swims and barbecues are almost a distant memory, our supply partners in China will be signing-off for their biggest annual holiday; New Year’s Eve. On the Chinese lunar calendar, January 28thmarks the official start of 2017. While this major event goes largely uncelebrated in the western world, the team at Bright Sparks has Chinese New Year (CNY) firmly penciled in our calendar.

Why? CNY shuts down every single production facility across China. While we’re always keen for a celebration, worst-case scenario, this multi-day celebration can result in severe delayson supply out of China.The official holiday lasts 9 days and most workers take the opportunity to extend their well-earned winter holiday for another week or two. Many suppliers are not back in business until two, sometimes three, weeks after the official holiday.
Afteryears working with supply partners in China, Bright Sparks has learned to work around CNY.To avoid the unwanted stress of delayed or missing orders, we’ve put together this trusty guide for managing promotional supply during China’s biggest national holiday.

Know your Chinese calendar

While the CNY is set on January 28th, 2017, the extended holiday puts a halt to mass production far earlier than many buyers anticipate. Many businesses will shut down from up to 2 weeks in advance. Letting Chinese New Year go unnoticed increases the risk of missed deadlines and subsequent losses for your business. Bright Sparks will have a hard time reaching any representatives, including the sales people, throughout the holiday period.
If you need productsshipped at any point in the summer/autumn season, then celebrations in China could well impact your expected timelines.Bright Sparks mitigate this risk by getting client orders in early.It is essential you have a clear confirmation on your delivery schedule well in advance so we can ensure they’re shipped before the big event.

Extend expected timeframes

Getting things back to normal takes time. The truth is that many manufacturers struggle to get back to a normal mode of operations in the weeks following the new year’s festivities. Some workers enjoy the holiday so much they choose not to return at all! Depending on the number of workers departing in secret, this can cause severe disruptions across the supply chain. It’s best to add some ‘human resource issue’ padding to expected timeframes for orders required immediately after the new year.

Be ready for the backlog

A large number of orders will begin stacking up from early December onwards, so the quality control risks are very real. Come the new year, this is stretching the manufacturers to maximum capacity. Without diligent quality control, this backlog can often lead to quality issues or incomplete orders. This is where our trusted supply chain comes into play. After years working with our network of suppliers, we’re confident they can maintain product quality and get your orders delivered on time.

Quick tips for avoiding severe delays around CNY:

Place your orders in time:Work with your account manager at Bright Sparks and ensure we are aware of your required timeframes. If you need your products by a certain date let us know and we can work with you to develop an ordering time frame plan.

Keep things moving: Approving visual proofs and physical samples in a timely manner puts you higher up on the manufacturer's list to avoid unwelcome delays.

Avoid placing last minute orders in January:Factories will be starting up again and walking into thousands of backlogged orders. To safeguard quality and reliability, we recommend giving them some time to catch-up.