Lumiform Mobile audits & inspections
Get App Get App

Incoming Goods Inspection Checks And Procedures

Find out what incoming goods inspection is, what to check for, and everything you’ll need to perform one successfully. Use these templates for the incoming goods inspection to immediately eliminate any quality defects in the pre-production.

See our ready-made templates:
Rated 5/5 stars on Capterra

Lumiform enables you to conduct digital inspections via app easier than ever before.

Get a kickstart with one of our +12000 ready-made and free checklists

Why is an incoming goods inspection with a checklist necessary?

The incoming goods inspection is a quality control in the context of the procurement of goods, thereby the quality of the delivered goods is checked according to specified criteria. The purpose of checking the delivery is to ensure that the received goods match the order, have no damage and meet the quality requirements of the company. Goods undergo rigorous testing after being manufactured following a factory acceptance test procedure but should still always be checked upon arrival. If possible, the incoming goods inspection should always be carried out in the presence of the supplier.

Quality managers use checklists during the incoming goods inspection to make it easier for themselves to reconcile the order with the delivered goods. In addition, these ensure that nothing is forgotten during the inspection. In this way, defective goods are more easily detected and complaints can be made more quickly. Goods inspection prevents customers from being dissatisfied and quality problems from occurring in the end product.

Goods inward inspections are mainly carried out in the following industries:

  • Catering, retail and other food businesses
  • Businesses that further process goods (production companies)
  • Logistics service providers
  • Shipping companies

Goods inward inspections reduce costs and increase quality standards and customer satisfaction. Many companies use their own labeling system for incoming goods inspection, which tells them what actions are necessary after the incoming goods inspection.

This article deals with the topics:

1. The different types of inspections

2. How an incoming goods inspection works

3. Identification systems in goods-in inspection

4. Testing and inspecting incoming goods

5. A mobile application for incoming goods inspections

Recommended Pages

Our tip:

Conduct this checklist easily and digitally via mobile app and save 50% of your inspection time. Try for free now

What are the Different Types of Inspections?

Imagine if you paid premium dollar to stock the shelves of your grocery store and then got handed a crate full of rotten bananas—and then was told you couldn’t return them.

That would be in a world without quality assurance inspections to ensure quality suppliers. There would be no rules of conduct, no returns, and no reimbursements. Anything would go, and the era of good customer service would come to a regrettable close.

But there are reasons suppliers want to inspect their produce before they sell you a defective product, and it comes down to one very basic business practice: They’d be hard-pressed to stay in business if they failed to keep their customers from coming back for more.

That’s why inspections take place at every stop along the way.

There are three types of incoming inspections as outlined below:

  1. Pre Production
  2. In-Line
  3. Final

Pre Production
A pre-production inspection will be a part of your incoming goods procedure. This inspection takes place before manufacturing starts and looks at all the raw materials that will go into the final product. For example, this could be double-checking that the cloth that will be made into a shirt is free from holes or tears.

An in-line inspection takes place in the middle of production to make sure everything is running smoothly. In the garment industry, this would look like double-checking that there are no partially stitched or missing stitching.

The final inspection is done when the manufacturing process is completed. This ensures the quality of the product is up to industry standards and customer satisfaction will be met.

Every step in an inspection is vital to quality assurance. Faulty, broken, or damaged materials can cost a company its bottom line, so it’s important that an inspection is done correctly. Products go through multiple quality checks throughout the manufacturing process, but the first check is arguably the most important because it’s the foundation on which everything is built. Each check after the first is a fail-safe in case something was missed during the initial inspection.

How does a incoming goods inspection process work?

A goods receipt inspection not only ensures a company's quality standards but also serves as an economic safeguard. If goods are damaged, acceptance can be refused and a faultless delivery demanded.

In order for such claims to be made, the goods must be inspected immediately for any defects. This also includes checking the correct number or quantity of the goods.

Responsible employees best proceed as follows during the incoming goods inspection:

  1. Check delivery note
  2. Assign delivery bill to corresponding order
  3. Check type and/or Perform quantity check
  4. Perform quality check
  5. Check whether defects are present
  6. Confirm all items
  7. Create goods receipt note (delivery note)

The process of the goods receipt check should be structured and, above all, uniform. First of all, it must be checked whether the delivery is of the correct amount. The delivery bill and order form are the basis for checking for completeness. Provided that the delivered goods are free of defects and in the desired quantity, the receipt of the goods is made, indicating the name of the inspector and the date and time.

Marking systems in incoming goods inspection

A checklist for incoming goods inspection specifies exactly which points are to be checked during a quality inspection, for example, the size, color, condition, packaging, and so on. To ensure that an inspection result triggers a specific action after inspection, many companies use a marking system for goods acceptance.

Three stages are usually set for the acceptance criteria: 1. Accepted, 2. Conditionally accepted, and 3. Rejected. The designations vary by company. You decide what happens to the goods after delivery.

1. Accepted

The delivered goods are free of defects. It can either be stowed in the warehouse or transferred to the next operation.

2. Conditionally accepted

The delivered goods have transport damage, functional and dimensional deviations, or improper markings. Acceptance is initially refused and rectification or replacement by the supplier is required.

3. Rejected

The delivered goods have significant defects. In these cases, the Lierung is often returned or refused acceptance. Depending on the type of goods and delivery agreements, however, companies may have to dispose of the rejected goods or classify them according to other criteria. In the retail industry, for example, defective goods are sold as second-choice items at a lower price.

How to Test and Inspect Incoming Materials?

Why is it important to check and test materials before they are put into production?

The answer may seem obvious—so faulty, defective, or damaged materials aren’t then made into faulty, defective, and damaged products.

But the mistake has been made before, which is why pre-production, in-line, and final inspections have been invented and implemented to prevent such needless errors from occurring for a second time. Still, people are only human, and they can make assembly line-halting blunders which is why the initial inspection should be the most thorough.

These are some reasons why you should utilize a goods inwards inspection if you haven’t done so already:

Foreign Suppliers

If you get your goods across land or overseas, you’ll want to be extra careful when conducting your receiving inspection. A lot of third-world countries don’t hold their products up to the same standards as your company likely prides itself on. Not checking materials for quality control could have disastrous implications on customer loyalty. And who would blame them? You want to get what you’re paying for—the company as well as the customers.

You shouldn’t relax your inspection diligence for domestic suppliers either, though. Gone are the days of quality over quantity.

Diminishing Quality

Companies cut costs. It’s a fact of life. But there’s no greater disappointment when your favorite cookie brand you’ve been buying for years suddenly tastes differently...some might even say cheaper.

It’s either the company is trying to cut costs anywhere they can—and more often than not at the expense of the quality—or it’s because they failed to properly conduct a materials inspection.

The company might have purchased substandard materials at the price of quality ones without even knowing. But one thing’s for sure: the customer will most certainly pick up on the difference.

Consumers are unforgiving, and one mistake—one hiccup along the line—could cost a company their loyalty.

Save Money

Yes, there is an initial upfront cost. Time is money and inspections take time. Employees don’t work for free, but neither do customers who will buy in cash if they see something they like.

Consider it an investment, like an insurance policy. You might be paying into it for years before you see an actual return on your investment, but when it does, it might be the only thing standing between your business and collapse.

So you’ve decided to exercise your right to inspect, but where do you start? What should you do? And most importantly, what should you look for?

Below is a seven step guide to materials testing and inspection:

  1. Pre Inspection
    Yes, there’s stuff to be done before any of the actual goods arrive. It mostly involves being prepared to receive and store the materials before production begins. This will be a good time to review the order, such as the number and quantity, and make sure it’s been fulfilled.
  2. Take Photos
    There’s nothing more incriminating than photographic evidence. Take the time to photograph or record a video of the incoming goods. Be sure to stay organized and attach the JPEG file to the inspection form. It’ll be easier if you switch to a paperless system for a more streamlined and effortless documentation process.
  3. Review Specifications
    This is where you’ll need to review the specific project specifications to determine that the goods received match the material grade, scope, and type required for the commercial venture. This is especially important if the project’s success is contingent on it meeting state and federal regulatory requirements.
  4. Physical Condition
    If the shipment is large, it might be a good idea to employ a strategy involving random checks. This will save time and energy. Instead of checking every single good that comes through the door, you can accept or reject the shipment based on the selected sample size.
  5. Confirm Supplier
    It’s good practice to double-check that the received goods are from the correct supplier. Finding out the wrong shipment was delivered after the fact is a headache no one wants to deal with. If this happens, you can send a notice of default to the supplier, but it’s better to reject the shipment upon arrival than to have to deal with the paperwork.
  6. Confirm Certifications
    If the project requires certified materials, they should come pre-stamped or stickered with the appropriate labels. If not, continuing manufacturing with these materials will result in noncompliance with state or federal regulations and could result in fines or lawsuits.
  7. Place in Storage
    Some industries require the goods to be properly stored upon arrival. The food service industry, for example, has incoming produce or meats that will need to be stored in a controlled temperature setting. An unloading dock is a busy place, and it’s easy for things to get lost in translation—or forgotten, in this case. To avoid this from happening, you’ll want to employ the use of tags or labels to make sure that these shipments get to their designated location.

At the end of the day, a successful inspection—whether they pass or fail—is a critical component in upholding quality and safety standards. Not only that, but it will keep the reputation of your business intact so that it may continue servicing people for years to come.

A mobile app for incoming goods inspection

Lumiform is a powerful checklist mobile app that helps ensure incoming goods inspection is done correctly. This prevents quality problems from occurring in the first place.

Individual digital forms

The flexible form construction kit makes it possible to create new individual checklists at any time and to adapt them again and again.

First class customer service

Lumiform’s excellent 24/5 support will reliably answer all your questions about the app when you need assistance using the tool.

Scheduling and notifications

The Lumiform App ensures that the schedule is kept. All employees receive notifications about the procedure and due dates. Managers automatically receive notifications when assignments are overdue and problems have occurred.

Time-defined work steps

Keep an eye on your schedule and use the information to identify opportunities to increase your efficiency.

Faster identification and resolution of problems

The data you collect from inspections is collected under the Analysis Tab. Here you can access all data and view your performance reports broken down by time, location and department. This helps you quickly identify causes and problems so you can fix them as quickly as possible.

Track inspections in facilities over time

Monitor your team’s inspection performance and identify opportunities to improve the process and efficiency of your operations.


Connect Lumiform’s Software to enterprise software systems.

Time-defined targets

Keep an eye on what’s happening and identify insights from the information gained to increase your efficiency.

Share this checklist:

Your contact for all questions concerning Incoming Goods Inspection Checklist

You have questions or would like to schedule a personal demo? We are happy to help you!