There is a common expression that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. This axiom holds true for many different situations and circumstances; none more so than the manufacturing industry, where getting it right is a prime concern.
Manufacturers operate in an industry that is continuously changing. Advancements in technology, legislative concerns, and a host of other variables combine to create a challenging environment for any company that is attempting to bring a product to the market; whether a seasoned, established business or a newcomer to the industry.
The cost of raw materials fluctuate with supply and demand; it may also be affected by local, regional, and federal government regulations. Materials obtained from overseas suppliers are also affected by the global political climate and government actions such as imposed tariffs.
The labor costs involved with the production of a product are also subject to government regulation. This may drastically differ with geographic location. Labor is expensive, and it is critical to control this cost by ensuring that there is enough labor to perform a task properly without wasting resources which can significantly increase costs.
The type of packaging and related costs also have an impact on the success of a product; especially if that product is marketed directly to consumers in a retail setting. Packaging must first ensure the product is safe and arrives in pristine condition. Products that are sold directly to the consumer have the added challenge of creating packaging that is appealing, attracting the customer’s attention and presenting the product in the best possible light. Getting it right is paramount.
In addition to these critical variables, shipping, production layout, energy consumption and a host of other fluctuating variables affect the success of any product. These elements affect not only the cost associated with the manufacturing process but also have a direct impact on the quality of the final product.
Getting it Right with Quality
In today’s competitive marketplace, quality is a variable that can set you apart from the competition. It can ensure the success of your product. While most manufacturers implement quality control steps in their production process, the final quality of your product is affected by each variable, before, during, and after the product is produced.
All manufacturers understand the value of maintaining a skilled labor force with the necessary knowledge, tools, and equipment required to produce the best possible product. Each step of the manufacturing process must be thoroughly monitored on a regular basis; this ensures that products are consistently getting it right, by meeting or exceeding the standards set by the company.
The end quality of any product is only as good as its weakest link. In the manufacturing industry, this includes the quality of the raw materials used. While the cost of raw materials may fluctuate and vary among suppliers, the quality of the material is just as crucial, if not more important than the cost. Small savings in the cost of raw materials that do not meet the same high-quality standards set for your manufacturing process may prove to be costly. It is critical to the success of any product that materials used in the manufacturing process are getting it right by meeting the highest standards possible.
Packaging and Shipping Quality
It is equally important to monitor the services that you employ after the creation of the product. The design and quality of packaging must reflect the same quality standards used in the production of the product. Packaging that does not adequately protect and display your product will ultimately diminish the consumer’s perception of its quality.
The same holds true for the shipping of the product. It’s vital that the shipping method and company you contract with ensure that your product arrives on time, without damage. Low-cost shipping methods may be tempting as a way to reduce the cost of getting your product to market. But they must adhere to the same high standards as the manufacturing process itself.
Quality control is one variable that can get you in all kinds of trouble. It is not only critical to implement quality control standards in the manufacture of your product; you must also understand and monitor the quality standards of suppliers and services you contract with throughout the process. The materials you use in production and the services you contract with to get your product to market directly reflect the quality of your product. Successfully bring a high-quality product to market requires attention to every aspect of its production.
There can be a high cost associated with not getting it right. To learn more about successfully manufacturing and launching your product contact us today.