When you’re looking to bring a new product to market, it’s likely that you’ll need to find a new product introduction (NPI) manufacturing partner. NPI manufacturing is the process of bringing a new product from the design and development stage all the way to full-scale production. It’s often a complex process that involves a number of different stages, each with their own set of challenges. As a result, new product introduction manufacturing requires a unique set of skills and capabilities, alongside high levels of flexibility and collaboration. With that in mind, here is what to look for in a new product introduction manufacturing partner.
Top Considerations for Quality New Product Introduction Manufacturing
Robust Design and Engineering Services
Some of the most important capabilities your new product introduction manufacturing partner should have are robust engineering and design support services. It’s essential to find a partner that can engage in brainstorming sessions with your own team, and who can translate conceptual ideas into viable product designs.
As an extension of that, your manufacturing partner should have an engineering support team with CAD/CAM capabilities that can help you fully optimize your designs for DFM, functionality, and cost-effective production. This includes conducting thorough analyses and tests to validate your design before prototyping.
Rapid Prototyping Capabilities
Rapid prototyping refers to the quick and iterative fabrication of a prototype. The primary goal of rapid prototyping is to provide a tangible and functional representation of a product’s design for testing, evaluation, and validation before mass production. It allows for the early identification of flaws or problems so they can be addressed early on.
Rapid prototyping can employ various techniques, but two of the most common are 3D printing and CNC machining, both of which are particularly well suited for rapid prototyping. Ensure that your new product introduction manufacturing partner has at least one of these capabilities.
Ability to Transition to Mass Production
One area that’s easy to overlook when you’re starting out on an NPI project is the end goal: full-scale production. You’ll want to make sure that your new product introduction manufacturing partner is not only well-equipped to support you through the design and prototyping stages; they also need to have the ability to transition to mass production when the time comes.
A few things you should look for in your manufacturing partner include:
- Tooling and fixturing expertise — ensure your partner has tooling expertise for mass production purposes
- Scalability — check to make sure your partner can scale up their processes from prototyping to full-scale production
- Supply chain management — your partner should be able to source materials at scale
- Quality control measures — ensure quality control measures are maintained throughout full-scale production and post-production operations
Look for a Manufacturer with Reliable Partners of Their Own
Finally, while it may not be at the front of your mind, it’s good to look into the partnerships that your NPI manufacturer has. Partnerships, especially in the manufacturing industry, can give you additional access to specialized expertise and equipment; integrated processes and efficient communication that can lead to faster product development; and a much more resilient supply chain.
For instance, Advantage Metal Products is proud to partner with Megatech, a machine shop out of Quebec City that specializes in rapid prototyping of complex parts. By combining our capabilities and the power of our fully-equipped facilities, we’re able to take a personalized approach to NPI manufacturing so you can get the services you need.
Advantage Metal Products Specializes in New Product Introduction Manufacturing
At Advantage Metal Products, we’re a full-service machine shop specializing in precision metal and NPI manufacturing. Our facilities, located in Livermore, CA, are equipped with the latest in advanced manufacturing technology. This enables us to provide comprehensive services for your new product, including engineering support, prototyping, sheet metal fabrication, machining, assembly, and more.
We have experience in manufacturing and supplying critical metal components for a wide range of industries. The combination of our capabilities, our attention to detail, and our seasoned team of customer-oriented experts makes us the ideal choice for your new product introduction.
Get in touch today to get started.