During the seminar, I took a photo with organizer and my friend.
(Left: Mr. Larry Lee (Customer Services & Compliance Quality Manager, GP Batteries International Limited), Mr. Leslie Lee (Chairman, IuPDI; Secretary and Honorary Chairman, CQI-HK) and I)
The first guest speaker was Ms. Polly Wong (Hermes Hansecontrol Group, OTTO Group from Germany) and her topic entitled “Hermes Hansecontrol – Requirement of European Brands and Retailers.” In the beginning, Ms. Wong briefed different concerns from retailers / brands such as Marketable, Reputation, Customer Satisfaction, Return Rate, Sales Volume and Liability, etc. However, the most significant items were “Legal Responsibility” and “Brand Image”.
Then Ms. Wong stated different European Union (EU) Directives that required the CE Mark. Most of that related to Safety but sometime we neglected the User Manual Ms. Wong said! Most legal responsibility was result of Imprisonment whatever it was major or minor offences!
Therefore, Ms. Wong’s company provided a service named “Marketability Check”. It was a report to verify all legal requirement based on company’s proof documents such as laboratory certificates for Performance, Safety, EMC, Chemical and Physical Testing. The Certificate of “Marketability Check” would result as Complete or Not Complete. The sample list is showed as following diagram.
After that Ms. Wong discussed the brand image that retailers’ promising to end consumers in EU were usually over the legal requirements. For instance, they guaranteed 3yr warranty which much longer than required by law. (Legal requirement is 2yr warranty). Some retailer had 60 Day Refund Policy even though customers only feel unhappy! Ms. Wong told us to ensure the satisfaction of consumers so as to avoid product return. Fitness for use (FFU) was considered and it included Durability, Usability, Performance and Instruction Manual.
The second guest speaker was Ms. Heike Schönfeldt (Hermes Hansecontrol Group, OTTO Group from Germany) and her topic named “Improving your branding with instruction manuals”. She explained three general requirements for instruction manuals included “Intended Use” (What is the intended use of a product?), “Safety” (What are the safety precautions?) and “Instruction” (How to use a product?).
The instruction manuals must always be Compete, Correct, Safe, Written in the national language of the buyer, Readable, Easy to Understand and Up-to-date, etc. It should be included warning for safety purpose.
Instruction Manual could be also improve your company’s branding including “Support of company image”, “Increase of recognition value” and “Improve of customer loyalty” through Corporate Identity, Accurate Instructions and User-friendly. For User-friendly, three options could be selected and they were “Graphic-based rather than Text-based manuals”, “Additional Quick Start Guide” and “QR Codes”. Then Ms. Schönfeldt showed some good samples to us.
After tea break, the last guest speaker was Mr. Hermon Wai (KJI Industrial Ltd.) and his presentation entitled “Enhancing Brands for Oversea Markets”. Firstly, Mr. Wai introduced KJI was an one-stop Electrical Household Application manufacturers in Hong Kong and Mainland China. They started from ODM and then provide OEM to Europe Brand, as well as, OBM. In order to enhance vertical integration, they invested Sichun Glass Factory recently. Their market distribution was showed that 47% in Europe, 24% in Asia Pacific, etc.
Then Mr. Wai shared their success factors with the statement “Thinking outside of the kitchen appliances everywhere must wrestle with the overlapping challenges”. The market demand analysis was discussed in UK, Germany, France and China. He told us why China has 69% of Other Food Preparation Appliances (e.g. Mincers, Slicers, etc.) because of making soya bean milk (豆漿).
Mr. Wai further explained their vertical integration included “Creative & Design”, “Research & Development”, “Manufacturing”, “Quality Assurance” and “Sales & Distribution”. Finally, Mr. Wai briefed their core competence included Design, Glass, Marketing, Motor, Engineering, Quality, Networking and Technology. He mentioned their success factors were Cost Competitive, Networking, Technical Know-how and Speed to Markets.
Finally, Mr. Wai recommended to SMEs about Key Challenges that “The only way to grow, with rare exceptions, is to develop unique innovations that define new subcategories and build barriers to inhibit competitors from gaining relevance.” Cost Control was another challenges that their top 3 expenses were Purchases (Raw Materials), Wages and Rent & Utilities. For labour cost, the following table showed the comparison of China cities and other Asia Countries. Other challenges were EU regulations included BPA FREE, RoHS 20.0, REACH, PAH and Food Contact Requirement. Lastly, Mr. Wai concluded that “Creating Value is a critical differentiator to compete; not to struggle on price competition.”
Hermon asked Ms. Heike Schönfeldt if manufacture only use electronic instruction manual. Ms. Heike Schönfeldt replied that it must use hardcopy instruction manual by law. Other questions by participants included supplier control, internet online and offline marketing, IP consideration, etc.
Leslie presented souvenirs to guest speakers.
IuPDI – http://www.iupdi.org/
CQI-HK Branch – www.thecqi.org.hk
SEEM, CityU – http://www.cityu.edu.hk/seem/