Selecting a Contract Manufacturing Partner
When you are seeking out a contract manufacturing company there are a number of factors to take into consideration.
You will want to select a manufacturing partner that is a good ‘match’ with your own company’s values.
Let’s take a look a 5 of such factors that we at Aajogo think should be considered when seeking a contract manufacturer.
Contract Manufacturing Capabilities
What are the full capabilities of the contract manufacturing service you are considering?
At our 72,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art Tempe manufacturing facility we are well-equipped to handle most precision sheet metal and precision CNC machining fabrication projects.
Our product design division offers engineering and quick-turn prototyping services and will work with you one-on-one in order to bring your product or concept to life.
In-house finishing, robotic welding, laser cutting, CNC machining, and milling, we are truly a one-stop-machine-shop.
Having the vast majority of capability under one roof helps us reach your goals faster by lowering costs and shortening lead times.
How a contract manufacturing service guarantee quality?
A current ISO Certification proves that a manufacturer has done its due-diligence in conforming and placing specific Quality efficiencies in place.
Aajogo is AS9100 Rev. D: 2016 accredited.
AS9100 AS9100 Rev. D is an aerospace standard based on the ISO 9001 quality system requirements.
This means our processes are controlled, documented and they can serve a purpose that goes beyond any checks and balances put in place over a company who is not ISO Certified.
Design for Manufacturability or DFM
DFM is a vitally important part of the manufacturing process that is overlooked by some contract manufacturing services.
DFM is about creating the most optimal plan, taking into account every possible process step, and weighing each variable against one another to be sure the final production process plan will be the ‘best’.
By using DFM techniques we are able to conserve time and save on your investment.
Finding methods to optimize the overall design in order to compliment capability and the ultimate desired outcomes can assist in streamlining the entire production process while not sacrificing a part, component or assembly’s integrity.
Open lines of communication throughout the entire manufacturing process are extremely important.
At Aajogo, we consider open customer communication to be vital to the relationship.
From design and manufacturing to packaging and delivery, at each stage of the process, our clients are the ‘first to know’ what is going on.
Open, honest and transparent communication tends to build trust, and more often than not builds a lasting working-relationship,
For contract manufacturing to be effective, it needs to get there just in time, every time.
Time to market, time to production and time to delivery.
But customers don’t want to hear excuses, they want to know their projects are moving along the process smoothly, as planned, and will deliver on-time, period.
At Aajogo that’s what you get, your products manufactured and delivered on-time, on-schedule and on budget.
Contract Manufacturer Selection: Taking the First Step
When it comes to contract manufacturer selection, what’s the first step?
It’s helpful when working with a contract manufacturer to have a complete understanding of all the details associated with any given project.
So it stands to reason that the first step involved with contract manufacturer selection is to completely and accurately define the scope of the job.
Assessing the necessary factors involved with manufacturing a metal part will give you insight when it comes to selecting a manufacturing company that can meet your individual needs.
The following itemized list contains all the factors involved with manufacturing a part.
Use this list to access your requirements, and help guide you in the process contract manufacturer selection.
- Product name: Give the project a name that will help a manufacturer understand why they should be interested. The more general you can be here the better.
- Project scope: Provide an estimated annual usage of the part and timeline constraints.
- Product description: Provide a description of the part that you need to have manufactured. This should give a good indication of what it is and what it is used for.
- Product application: By describing the application, you can connect the dots for a potential manufacturer and end-consumer.
- Capabilities and processes: List all capabilities that you understand to be necessary in completion of your project.
- Equipment used: Equipment information is important for procurement and engineering sourcing groups. It is a good practice to know what specific machinery is required in order to produce your part, and can help to determine a manufacturer’s capabilities.
- Tightest tolerance: Describe your projects tolerance requirements. This is a critical decision making component for most projects. The tighter, the better!
- Product length/width/height/ and OD/ID: The envelope dimensions of a part help your potential manufacturer understand the overall size you require. Different contract manufacturers have different size restrictions based upon their facilities and manufacturing capabilities.
- Product weight: The weight of each part will identify the ability to ship locally or nationally. At the same time it will identify the scope of projects if the weights are very large.
- Color: While it seems trivial, every bit of information can help a potential manufacturer make the decision to work with you.
- Material thickness: The thickness of the material you are working with or require will allow manufacturers to better understand how their team and raw material will fit into your project.
- Material type: Provide your material type by the proper ASTM designation as well as the colloquial terminology.
- Material finish: If you need to have the part plated or polished to a certain standard grade, be sure to provide the information. Sometimes manufacturers will outsource such operations, affecting the time span for delivery. If a manufacturer can provide the completed part from one location it is more advantageous for your supply chain.
- Industry for use: Does your potential manufacturer have experience with the particular industry you are working within? Are they familiar with the standards and guidelines required?
- Volume: This is extremely important! Manufacturers hate getting RFQs for the wrong order size. Be very clear here about the size orders you are expecting.
- Delivery time: Timelines for delivery help to define what working with a particular manufacturer will be like.
- Delivery location: If possible provide the city and state where the order will shipped.
- Packaging and shipping: Outline the packaging necessary for the parts and the shipping option that was used.
- Standards met: If and specific standards are required for the project, list them here. It is essential that a manufacturer provide confidence in their abilities to adhere to requirements a potential customer will request.
- Testing performed: What is your potential manufacturers quality process? The more complex the part or more critical the use case, the more a potential manufacturer will want to see from this section.
- Drawing file type used: Let the contract manufacturer know what file types you prefer and what you used for the project.
- Part management services: If warehousing or just-in-time (or JIT) services required for the project, include information on the particulars of the engagement.
By following the outline presented here and gathering all the specific details of your manufacturing project in one place, it will give you as well as a potential manufacturing partner a head start in the contract manufacturer selection process.
Contract Manufacturing Companies: 10 Myths Busted
Beyond the question, “How does contract manufacturing work?” the discussion very quickly turns to “How do I select a contract manufacturing partner?”
Selecting a contract manufacturing partner is a critical process and should not be taken lightly.
Large sized manufacturers , small sized and everything in-between crowd the manufacturing market-space and compete for your attention, and more importantly a slice of your manufacturing budget.
What are some of the metrics you can use to sort the list of manufacturing companies, so you end up with the best match for your company?
Ron Keith, Chief Executive Office for Riverwood Solutions has put together a great list that attempts to identify some of the ‘myths’ surrounding the process of selecting a contract manufacturing partner.
The Top 10 Myths About Selecting a Contract Manufacturing Partner
BY RON KEITH FOR INDUSTRYWEEK
With so much of today’s electronics manufacturing outsourced, my team at Riverwood Solutions ends up spending a lot of time inside various contract manufacturing facilities. Sitting on a plane today heading to yet another contract manufacturing (CM) visit, I started tallying the number of CM factories, and the number of different countries my team has been in over the past year visiting CMs. I was able to quickly rattle off CM factories in 24 different countries on 5 continents that were visited by just the consulting arm of Riverwood Solutions in the past 12 months.
There are a number of different reasons why we spend so much time in outsourced manufacturing facilities. The one that I want to discuss here is the process of selecting an outsourcing partner or contract manufacturer. For an OEM that makes its living selling a physical product, the selection of a contract manufacturer to build that product is a weighty decision. Yet there are so many misconceptions and misplaced notions about what is really important in the selection criteria. The following is a list of some of the most common myths and misconceptions we see held by OEMs about selecting the right contract manufacturer.
10) “If I select the right contract manufacturing partner everything will be perfect.” Contract manufacturing is a difficult, competitive, low-margin business – and it is one that needs to be actively managed. OEMs that get the best results, and that express the highest level of satisfaction with their CMs, are ones that structure their own operations organization to effectively manage outsourced manufacturing.
Contract Manufacturing Advantages
The advantage contract manufacturing offers is all about one thing, and that is maximizing profit.
The business that is outsourcing will try to attain the highest quality product for the lowest possible price.
The company that is performing the outsourcing is trying to establish a market share and base price for quality services performed.
In a perfect world a balance in achieved, and everyone makes a profit at the end of the day… but there can be pitfalls along the way.
Check out this article by WISEGEEK that covers some of the pros and cons of contract manufacturing.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Contract Manufacturing?
Contract manufacturing refers to a situation where a business will engage the services of an independent party to perform a specified duty for the business. In terms of manufacturing, contract manufacturing refers to a situation where a manufacturer will engage the services of an independent party to perform a specified job. There are various reasons for this type of engagement by manufacturers, all of which involve the maximization of profit. The process of contract manufacturing also has some negative considerations that include the risk of uncertainty and lack of control over the process.
The management of companies in general realize that the best way to achieve the best output is to specialize in that in which they are most proficient. In economics, this theory is known as “comparative advantage,” meaning that even though two companies can produce the same item, one of them is able to produce it in less time, at a cheaper rate or to a higher level of standard than the other. This is the major driving factor behind contract manufacturing. A company that is less equipped to handle a particular aspect of a production process or even the whole process for a particular item will be better served by outsourcing the manufacturing or production of that item to another company that is better equipped to do so.
In this sense, contract manufacturing allows companies to save costs by manufacturing a particular item at a cheaper rate than what it would cost them If they decided to undertake the manufacturing process themselves. Another advantage of contract manufacturing is the fact that it allows the company doing the outsourcing to shave some time off the whole process, giving them quicker returns and turnovers. Where a company is less effective than another in manufacturing an item, contract manufacturing will allow it to concentrate on that in which it is the most efficient.
Group Manufacturing Services, Inc. is the Ideal Contract Manufacturing Partner for YOUR Company
Where quality meets precision.
With over 30 year experience in contract manufacturing business, Group Manufacturing Services, Inc. a Tempe, AZ sheet metal jobshop, will get the job done on time, every time.
See how we outperform the other contract manufacturing companies!