Third-Party Refurbishers Help Get
First-Quality Goods to Market

Ideally, every step of your supply chain runs like clockwork, without interruption. You want to keep operations, transportation, and distribution ticking along precisely. A significant interruption can deliver a serious blow to the timeline—and the bottom line.

But life happens…

  • An overseas shipment of suits gets soaked with saltwater, plunging the distribution center into a state of confusion.
  • While a truck is being unloaded, quality control conducts an audit. They discover that a box of “matching” pant sets has mismatched sizes, and the entire shipment is flagged as inferior.
  • An expensive promotional item—multi-strand gemstone necklaces assembled by an offshore manufacturer–arrives at the warehouse with broken clasps. The buyer may refuse the shipment.

Interruptions do happen from time to time. Combine this with the fact that many online distributors and brick-and-mortar retailers have implemented just-in-time inventory strategies. As a result, when products are manufactured offshore but don’t meet quality standards, it’s too time-consuming and costly to ship them back.

Supply Chain Disruption Solution

A third-party refurbishment service can provide a solution, offering a variety of services to return products to first-quality condition. When researching refurbishers, refer to this checklist:

  • Apparel part/trim replacement and sewing repairs. The refurbisher’s staff must be skilled in sewing tasks including repairing or replacing zippers, snaps, and buttons. A surprising variety of apparel issues can be remedied by reinforcing stress points, adjusting hem lines, shortening pant legs, etc.
  • Cleaning. From rust to saltwater, many types of stains and soiling on apparel and general merchandise can be treated via spot cleaning, laundering, or dry cleaning.
  • Measurement inspection. An entire shipment of garments can be flagged as inferior when measurement issues are discovered. Perhaps the sleeves are too long, legs are too short, or the head opening is too small. Team with a refurbisher that offers an apparel inspection team trained to inspect the entire shipment, sort garments, and remedy the issue.
  • Mold and mildew removal. A damp, musty-smelling shipment is disappointing, but not disastrous. A refurbisher with an on-site ozone shock treatment chamber can transform musty clothes, belts, shoes, purses, and other goods into first-quality product.
  • Relabeling/heat transfer label. Small yet mighty, labels must have accurate content and be placed correctly. One option is using heat transfer labels to cover up wrong size information or add decoration to garments, briefcases, and other goods.
  • Repackaging/ticketing of goods. Packaging or ticketing issues must be resolved quickly and accurately. You’ll want to team with a detail-oriented refurbisher that will ensure goods have the right packaging and accurate tickets.

A refurbisher can help to minimize fall-out rate, avoid consumer returns, and return merchandise to first-quality condition. When you establish a relationship with an experienced third-party refurbisher, you can bring life-saving solutions to a wide variety of supply chain challenges.


Jeff Glassman is CEO of Darn It! Inc., a third-party refurbisher specializing in apparel and general merchandise inspection, repair, cleaning, kitting, and warehousing.

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