Quality Products International


DUPRO vs PSI & buying without a seatbelt

by on Nov.29, 2016, under China QC Inspection Blog

Given a choice, would you opt for, advanced driver training, insurance, seat belt, none or all?

Some people go for neither on the basis that they are a good safe driver.

So, let’s say you going to be driving in an environment where there is a high risk of accidents AND some of the other drivers will be planning to cause accidents.

Here is perspective on Procurement and Quality Control (QC) using driving as a metaphor from Quality Products International (QPILtd – QPI)

Leaving aside nuances such the distinction between quality assurance, and quality control, etc, there are many components in a good procurement and QC process, and some key ones are Good Specification, DUPRO, PSI.

Good Specification & Follow up

From a driving perspective, this is an experienced driver, in a well maintained car, will have the best chance of a safe trip on most road and weather conditions.

They have planned their route or know clearly where they going, and leave early enough to get there on time without rushing.

They are vigilant about conditions and other traffic and able to adjust accordingly.

The correct product specification agreed with the factory, ideally during quote stage, and certainly in place at or before the PO, will be key to any chance of product arriving as planned.


This is your safety system, such as ABS, Seat Belts, Airbag, etc.

No matter how vigilant you are, how much you anticipate, there is a chance of an incident or accident.

…perhaps you are in among many cars at a red light, someone three cars back does not stop, and you get “concertinaed”. The best and worst drivers in the world will suffer more or less the same damage.

There can be a lot of force involved in that type of accident and many will surprised how much damage and injury is possible.

The safety systems will help keep you safer than would otherwise be the case, and insurance will hopefully help you clean up the mess.

Remember the quality you desire or expect is not always going to be as important to the factory managers, or production staff.

They may be like a careless driver, or planning to intentionally doing something that will cause and accident!

Just as a careless driver, they may think their idea of quality is good enough for you.

They may be planning to cut corners a little to save costs.

DUPRO is your safety system in production, similar to driver alerts, stability control and ABS.

ABS breaking, it will help you stop short of an obstacle and greater ability to steer around it if necessary.

Just as ABS helps avoid the collision, DUPRO‘s minimize delays and compromised quality issues that arise of re-work at the end of production.

DUPRO’s give QC teams and buyers a chance to see issues as they are arising and the factory an opportunity to adjust, modify, re-work etc before it is too late.


Well over 95% of QC inspections are a one man day PSI / FRI.

A Pre Shipment Inspection, typically as a Final Random Inspection is typically completed when 100% of the product is complete and 80% is packed.

There is some scope for minor rework, cleaning, tidy up packaging, etc, however if it uncovers more than very minor problems, there will almost certainly be a major compromise on either product quality of shipment date.

So a PSI / FRI from QPI or any other 3rd party QC company is like a form of insurance.

It protects buyers from paying the full balance of the order and shipping completely faulty product, a problem very hard to address once the shipment arrives and is checked. …..or worse, if not checked, the issue is uncovered after distribution .

When the buyer is holding the balance of the payment they have some leverage, but not massive amounts! The factory has invested in raw material, labor, and possibly opportunity cost on some other production. The stock is occupying valuable and often very limited room in the warehouse, so they are keen to get it out and get money in.

In some cases the factory owner will sooner sell the product (often with the buyers logo & trade market) on alternate markets rather than try to adhere to an onerous re-work regime.

So just as insurance, may help clean up the mess, neither insurance or PSI prevent the accident or product defect!

Also like a traffic accident, the insurance may be able repair or replace a broken car, however there will at least be major disruption, and quite possibly serious injuries which do not heal simply or easily, even with money for doctors and therapists.

QPILtd recommends a Good Combination

Just as the key to safe driving is through training, detailed planning, comprehensive maintenance, excellent safety features and insurance, very similar strategy is recommended for procurement.

Thoroughly checking the factory beforehand, detailed specification through quote and PO stages, DUPRO, and PSI.

The other advantage with DUPRO, is it sends a clear message to the factory that there will be QC. They know it is going to be easier to take some extra care to get it right the first time, rather than have to rework after a PSI.

QC & Procurement

QPI can provide all these and other key QC elements as standalone services for QC clients who have an existing direct relationship with factories.

The QC services are also something we do as part of our standard service for procurement clients.

For peace of mind procurement, all is needed is a quote request.

QPI provides a firm detailed quote including price and lead time, and if the client proceeds, QPI follows up closely on all details with the factory, including QPI inspectors conducting DUPRO and PSI at no additional charge to the client.

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by on May.04, 2014, under QPI Ltd Glossary Blog

DUPRO Inspection (DUring PROduction Inspection, DUring PROcess Inspection, Inline Inspection, etc)

DURPO’s can be conducted any time during the course of the production cycle and can include Sample Collection and other useful features.

It is proactive QC step and can often avert costly and time consuming problems from delaying shipment.

It is typically followed by a Pre Shipment Inspection

Some articles on DUPRO:

– DURPO – DURing PROduction Inspection, valuable element of QC

– DUPRO – one more reason – it tells the factory you are serious about quality


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DURPO – DURing PROduction Inspection, valuable element of QC

by on Nov.03, 2011, under China QC Inspection Blog

DURPO or DURing PROduction inspections are one of the most valuable and cost effective elements of a robust QC system. It should not normally replace Pre Shipment Inspections (PSI), DURPO can certainly improve any QC system in a very cost effective.

Quite simply DURPO gives the client an opportunity to know and understand what is happening with their order during production and affords the opportunity address, redress or rework production in a more timely and cost effective manner, often before shipping deadlines.

The mainstay of product inspections is the Pre Shipment Inspections (PSI).

In a procurement environment, the PSI is akin to seat belts and insurance policies for drivers and they all offer very good protection.

However just like with insurance policies and seat belts, when all goes smoothly there is no issue, however once needed things will be messy.

In most cases the PSI will simply define the scale and scope of the problem / accident and protect the client from paying for deficient product.

…..better to take steps to avoid the accident in the first place!

Following with the analogy, DURPO is more like ABS and or defensive driving. There is a problem or something on the road, and the ABS along with good driving skills assists in steering around and avoiding the collision, or at least minimising damage.

Typically if a problem is found during a Pre Shipment Inspection, there will be strong pressure to meet a shipment deadline.

The decision structure is often to:

– ship or

– rework.

If shipping inferior product, should a discount be allowed?

If rework is decided, who will pay for rework? Client, factory or intermediary?

If the fault is “compliance related” the decision process will have to account for the need of products to comply with relevant standards.

Original specifications, artwork, purchased orders and emails will be scrutinized by all parties involved. Bluffing and brinkmanship is common by both factory and client with intermediaries typically trying to minimize their own exposure.

If the client feels their product is “worthless”, especially if non compliant, they may well forfeit their deposit, but then the question comes up about goods in the factory, often bearing the clients trademark!

….I have been involved in supervised product destruction on a few occasions, and it is often a tricky process.

If a factory feels that re-work will cost more than their profit margin, they may well turn their back on the client with a view of disposing the product “elsewhere” to recoup some funds.

Both factory and client will rightly feel that they have legal rights….again once the Pre Shipment Inspection alerts the client to the problem it will by definition be a problem and it is often a messy one that will be expensive in some way to resolve.

DUPRO is not a guaranteed fix, but like ABS and defensive driving practices, it will reduce the risk of the accident (or PSI failure) and in many cases reduce the damage of an accident.

Even a single DUPRO inspection can make a massive difference, and on larger orders it can be worth considering more man days of DUPRO rather than more man days or PSI.

The timing of the DUPRO should ideally be at a key point in production & / or somewhere late in the production cycle – early in the packing cycle.

It also sends a clear message to the factory that the client is serious about QC!

Key Point DUPRO

With our genesis in Floaties Swim products QPI Ltd has been involved in a lot of inflatable and swim wear manufacture.

Typically both PVC and fabric go through a similar process, where they are purchased in rolls of material which is often a specific colour / texture that has been ordered for that product.

Raw material is cut into sheets for printing and then sewn or welded into a finished product.

If the print is inferior, it will have a significant impact on the final product, in some cases such as inflatable swim products, poor or incorrect print may render the product non-compliant which means it will not legally be sealable in the target market, with jail terms possible in some cases!

Re-work for this will typically be impossible / non-viable, or at best look terrible. Scrapping the product has costs associated and the lead time to order new raw material and start again, will normally mean losing market position in a seasonal market.

For us the benefit of having someone checking the size, colour and artwork of the print, early in the print cycle obvious.

Another good time for DUPRO is during “in factory testing”.

All inflatable products such as Floaties, Hydro Kids and the OEM products that we work with, are subjected to 100% “open valve inflation test”.

There can be merit in having independent supervision of this stage in the process.

……we have seen factories complete 100% inflation test, and then simply pack all product, good and bad for shipment!

General DUPRO

On larger orders, it is worth considering additional DUPRO inspections.

The main two benefits that DUPRO offers, is preventing quality problems before they occur in production and the opportunity to re-work before some element is locked into a final assembly.

It also gives the inspector an opportunity to review factory QC documents and ensure QC procedures have been implemented and followed!

It gives the inspectors an opportunity to see a lot of product, and it underlines to the factory, from supervisor to machine operator that care and attention to detail is needed for that shipment!

There are pros and cons on exact timing of general DUPRO. Earlier in the manufacturing demonstrates QC to the factory and their staff, but will see less product.

Later in production, more product will be seen however there is less opportunity to address it. An ideal time is when most production is complete and packing is starting.

For some items that will have a number of consignments, and / or repeat orders, it is worth considering high DUPRO along with PSI on initial shipments tapering down over subsequent orders.


Many factories are staffed by migrant workers, who normally go home for CNY and often consider career, work or factory changes with the start of the next year. It is very common for the majority of factory floor workers, many factory supervisors and even middle management to be NEW to a factory after Chinese New Year!

Many clients find that a number of orders go smoothly and they become comfortable with a factory (and complacent with QC) then shipments after CNY have problems. Often it is the case that there has been a significant turnover of staff, and those familiar with the product / production are no longer there.

…it is virtually like the order has gone to a new factory, even though it is the same location, with the same owners!


DUPRO is a valuable and cost effective part of a robust QC process.

While DURPO would ideally NOT replace PSI, it can often be more effective at improving the quality of product shipped, rather than simply defining and quantifying the problem, which is of sometimes the case for Pre Shipment Inspections.

Please contact QPILtd for assistance in planning your QC program when placing your orders!

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