Virtual Sourcing Office: Recruitment of Sourcing Specialists

The client, a Shanghai-based joint sourcing office of two low-cost retailers in Finland and Norway offering a broad range of product segments, engaged Asia Perspective in a Strategic Review of the Purchasing Alliance of the client.

Following the results of our review, the client reached out to Asia Perspective for a deeper analysis of their Asian sourcing operations and to get an overview trend analysis of how European sourcing offices in China differentiates risks by relocating sourcing outside of China. Asia Perspective was also tasked with the setup of a virtual sourcing office in Vietnam. The aim of the project was to help the client manage and enable further sourcing growth in Vietnam through onsite operation of a virtual sourcing office.

The first step of the project is the recruitment of sourcing specialists. Asia Perspective was tasked with managing the full recruitment process to hire a Sourcing Manager that is to be stationed in Asia Perspective’s office in Ho Chi Minh City. The recruitment process covers every step from initial CV screening, interview organizing, to signing and onboarding candidate. Post-recruitment, Asia Perspective continually helps with the operation of the virtual sourcing office, providing supports in operation, HR, and administration.

Recruitment interview

As of today, the client has experience with Chinese suppliers, but felt the need to strengthen their sourcing base in the Southeast Asian region. Following the results of our operations analysis of the client, Vietnam is deemed the most suitable place to hold a virtual sourcing office. The sourcing office in Vietnam will be trialed with the sourcing of furniture and other related homeware products, something that Vietnam has long established a strong global market standing. Consequentially, there is a large pool of sourcing specialists in the field.

The challenge was for Asia Perspective to identify candidates that could meet the various requirements of the client. The right candidate needs not only the extensive experience in sourcing our client’s targeted products, but they must also have the experience serving European clients. Further, they need to portray the right characters to fit in our client’s diverse working culture.

The recruitment of sourcing specialist included:

  • Candidate search and screening,
  • Three rounds of interview between the most potential candidates and the team of Asia Perspective (first interview), the sourcing office of the client in Shanghai (second interview), the representatives of the client in Finland and Norway (third interview).
  • Reference check, offering and signing contract with the selected candidate,
  • Provision of ongoing support for the virtual sourcing office including HR, administration, payroll management, and operational support.

From over 100 potential candidates for the Sourcing Manager position, Asia Perspective selected 6 most potential candidates that fit the client’s criteria to present to our client. Following the client’s interview and selection process, Asia Perspective conducted reference check with the selected candidate’s previous direct managers, provided offering and signing of employment contract, as well as on-going HR & Administration support for the new Sourcing Manager.

Following the onboarding of the sourcing team, Asia Perspective continually provide operational and administrative support for the client’s virtual sourcing office.

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