How to Find Reliable Wood Furniture Maker

Working with wood furniture and wood products in several cases are challenging and need special attention to the processing. Selecting right and reliable wood manufacturer plays a vital role in the quality and success of your end goal when sourcing wood products.

To help you make a correct decision, we compiled several crucial factors to keep in mind when choosing a wood manufacturer. And these factors you can only obtain by implementing deep dive assessment and evaluation.

Wood furniture factory warehouse in Qui Nhon city, Central Vietnam

Reputation & Experience

You can start by evaluating the reputation and experience of the company. Check around for reviews and testimonials from previous customers. A company that has been around for a decent amount of time, depends on kind of wood products, is more likely a reliable choice.

Getting to know a manufacturer is like an iceberg. Only those that floating at the surface are visible, and other important factors are hidden underneath that we have to do deep dicing to understand and to see the actual capability.

Manufacturer's Iceberg

The Iceberg phenomenon is common for manufacturers. In many cases only a very small amount of information is available or only certain situation are highlighted. And the other crucial information was not meant to be available or to be exposed.

Here are normally what you see on the surface.

1. Presentation
Typically, nice presentation of the company, size of the production facility, special crafted product's sample that are carefully done. Some important key factors can be seen as signs of experiences, machineries technology, and creativity.

2. Brand & Customers
From the company profiles, website, brochures, and/or fair and exhibition, we can see whether a wood manufacturer has produced for well-known retailers or resellers in their market (e.g. IKEA) and numbers of years working in the wood business. We can see variety of wood products they've been working and see which other material they are able to provide.

3. Public Relations
Some wood manufacturers invest on their marketing campaign and has a very good communication skills on presenting their products, knows very well their markets, and has ability to reach potential customers.

4. Innovation
Through the product's presentation, we can see if the manufacturer has ability to create products using the latest technology, and the quality of their designs are adapting to the latest market demand.

5. Price
The price range can be obtained at the very first stage of communication, products displayed, or products catalog. But it cannot define the competitiveness among other manufacturers or products category.

Beneath the Iceberg

These important information about wood manufacturer will only be available by implementing some assessments, several meetings, facility visits, product documentations, etc.

1. Competitiveness
From your initial request, you might get multiple offers from several manufacturers to ensure their competitiveness. And based on some factors like product specification, minimum order quantities (MOQ), and right quality, you can shortlist and manage the negotiation.

2. Product Quality
Important to have product samples based on your request to verify correct quality and manufacturer's know-how. The best method to see the sample directly, either by receiving them or by visit the showroom/factory.
You need correct quality at the right price.

3. Know How
Working experience is essential and a factory who consistently working on certain wood species or certain wood furniture for a long time, means they have very good know-how to deal with every step of production process and wood properties.
There are some methods to assess those capability through factory audits, during production process, and other factory visits.

4. Production Efficiency
Being cost effective is importance, and in order to achieve that a manufacturer need to know how to be efficiently utilize their resources allocation and maximize the output without incurring more cost. The final result will be price competitiveness.

This evaluation will be very useful especially when the orders volume is big or when the type of products has a 'bottle neck' in its process. Bottle neck means a process in the production that takes longer time, or smaller output compared to other steps.

5. Lead Time
Lead time measures how long it takes to do a wood furniture production from the raw material until final products received by the consumers. In manufacturing, lead time represents the time to create a product since receiving official order until the departure of product's delivery. As basic, a wood furniture manufacturer will declare 90 days of production lead time.

6. Social, Safety Compliance
Brand reputation is very important for some retailers, and with a simple mistake or accident at the workplace in the news can cause damage that take years to repair. And much more important than that is the wellbeing of the workers inside the manufacturing facility and surroundings.

Factory audits can help to assess the manufacturer's working conditions, but more importantly to visit the facility by performing basic social & safety checks such as: protective gears on workers, factory layout, fire systems, children/young workers, and material storage. Wood furniture production requires a lot of machinery that must have high level of safety device and system in the factory.

7. Transparency, Integrity
Transparency in wood sector means to ensure the traceability of wood source, kind of material and manufacturing process. And to ensure the raw material is coming from reliable sources, there are certifications or documentations to be obtained. Depending on the size and location, as you will work with multiple manufacturers, you need to ensure how they handle data and information to be consistent, accurate, and secured.

Wood material must be purchased very early before starting any production process. The wood must be dried for at least one month in advance.

8. Financial Health
It is good to know whether a manufacturer's finance is in a good shape, where which allow them to control capital to meet all expenses, investments, and making profits. Not every company will declare their financial status, it is important to measure their performance so your business and products will be running smoothly.

Securing the right wood manufacturer is crucial step, and it's not that easy specially if you are only getting started. So before placing any order, make sure you understand them by looking at what are on the surface and evaluate what are hidden underneath.

Additional step when necessary to add is by placing a pilot order/project within the amount you consider small to minimize the risks and provide opportunity to identify issues in advance.

If you need top have support to work with wood manufacturers in Asia, particularly South East Asia region, you can contact us.


Because wood is sustainable and more eco-friendly

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