There are many stages during a project that could benefit from on-site visits with potential manufacturing partners. Below we’ve highlighted the mutual benefits between all parties during a project.
1. Factory Screening
Having an understanding of where and who will eventually be manufacturing the product, allows the designer to have a clear understanding of the processes and capabilities. All of which can then be considered during the engineering and manufacturing stages.
2. Hands-on Approach
Having a hands-on direct approach grants greater involvement and control over the finer details, while allowing the designer to demonstrate and outline the vision and direction of the project to the manufacturer. This direct involvement helps make quick informed decisions and allows both parties to mutually implement these.
3. Clearer Communication
Even more crucial while using overseas factories, the face to face communication helps overcome language barriers, ensuring the manufacturer has a clear and in depth understanding of the design requirements before beginning processes, thus saving costs due to miscommunication later down the line.
4. Improved Quality Control
First hand inspection of samples and tools is essential, doing this while visiting a manufacturer enables quick direct feedback. Actions that more often than not can be immediately implemented reducing chances of deadlines being pushed back. During the visit a golden sample can be agreed and signed off by all parties, this sets pass/fail markers for the internal QC check.
5. Higher quality Product
The goal is to produce the highest quality products in the most efficient way. The on-site visits enhance this through the combination of all the above points. Whether this be regarding communication, design discrepancies or manufacturing processes.
6. Building Trust
Ultimately building a relationship with manufacturers benefits all parties, in both the short and long term. The earlier the relationship is established in a project, generally leads to a better and smoother manufacturing process and higher quality outcome.