Finding a manufacturer for your latest business venture can be a very jarring task. It can make or break your endeavor and draw the fine line between success and failure. There are a lot of companies that could provide you with the supplies you need to complete your product. But how do you gauge a great manufacturer from a bad one? Here’s a guide to help you make the right decision.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Domestic Manufacturers
Locating a local manufacturer is relatively more straightforward. The labor standards are higher compared to getting your supplies overseas. Communication is also less likely of an issue as cultural and language barriers are non-existent. Shipping times are faster and in the event of a mishap, you can rectify it immediately. The market appeal of your product is also higher as consumers tend to trust and support products that are made in the US.
The downside of locally sourcing a manufacturer is that costs are very high. It might also be difficult to find certain products that are necessary for your business as some of them are not manufactured in the US anymore.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Overseas Manufacturers
The most notable advantage of having a manufacturer overseas is the cheap costs due to inexpensive labor. There are also plenty of manufacturers to choose from abroad, especially in Asian countries such as India or China. It is just a matter of finding the manufacturer that can cater to the specific needs of your product.
On the other hand, products that are made overseas are often perceived by consumers as low quality. The language barrier and time zone differences can be a huge setback as well. It could also be difficult for you to conduct regular onsite visits to make sure that your manufacturing processes are running as smoothly as possible.
Hiring an overseas manufacturing manager can be very a sensible decision in helping you deal with overseas suppliers. As a local, the manager can be your pair of eyes on the ground. Their job is to be the liaison between you and your manufacturer. They can do the negotiations for your orders and should any problems arise, they will be able to work directly with them. They can also help handle freight deliveries and keep you up-to-date on anything and everything related to the manufacturing facility.
Why Not Both?
Having one local manufacturer and one overseas manufacturer can be highly beneficial for your business. If there are delays or wrong shipments, you can use your local manufacturer as a backup. After all, it is always a good idea to have your products available on hand. Your consumers will not appreciate the wait for delayed shipments.
Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Machining
If your business venture requires more specificity such as an aerospace machine shop or drilling company, you may require a more specialized set of manufacturing equipment. With the available technology nowadays, CNC machining can elevate your products into the 21st century. Manufacturers with this kind of technology are highly sustainable and can be a lucrative investment over a 10 to 20-year timeframe.
What are the advantages of CNC precision machining technology? These manufacturers are capable of handling 3D printing technology, which are capable of manufacturing your products with the use of materials, such as plastic or powdered resin. Moreover, with recent advancements in CNC precision technology, metal or concrete can now be used for manufacturing operations.
CNC machining could also help you innovate new products. It could help you with the design and full build-up of prototypes for your future products. This also means that, in time, this type of manufacturing will become more accessible as the technology develops, hence, reducing operational costs.
With these in mind, making a decision about finding the highest quality manufacturer should be easier. Weigh in all the pros and cons. Meet up with manufacturers and ask them important questions that go beyond just cost. Try to gather other key data points, including their response times during manufacturing crises, geopolitical and financial stability, and how scalable their manufacturing services are. Go for a manufacturer that can supply you with your product at an affordable per-unit price, has the resources to minimize and address operational issues, and is overall easy to work with.