East West Manufacturing Blog

6 Biggest Mistakes When Selecting a Contract Manufacturer: Part 2

Written by Andy Reese | November 04, 2014

We're back for our second installment of the 6 Biggest Mistakes When Selecting a Contract Manufacturer! If you missed the first three mistakes we mentioned, check out our blog post here.

  1. The Devil is in the Detail

    If you work in company with more than one person, Communication is going to be a top 10 complaint.  Now picture you are trying to build a complex critical-to-function engineered product that has specific plating requirements, dimensional tolerances to achieve, and color matched to a specific Pantone.  Now imagine you are trying to communicate those 12,000 miles away, to an engineer or factory owner in another language, within a different culture.  You will find quickly that communicating details requires a process.  Don’t underestimate how incredibly challenging global contract manufacturing can be!

    Our takeaway: Have Engineers who can Deliver Engineering Details, where you Manufacture!

  2. Good, Fast, and Cheap, Pick Two!

    An age old saying that has followed my career that pertains to nearly every business situations is: “Good, Fast, and Cheap, You can Pick Two”.  You can have Good and Fast, but it won’t be Cheap.  You can have Fast and Cheap, but it will not be Good!  Follow me here:  Contract Manufacturing can make you more competitive (i.e. save costs) but do not expect to find world-class quality and production facilities when you are just looking for, “cheap”.

    Our takeaway: Be Realistic In Your Expectations (Price, Speed, Quality)


  3. “What About My IP?”

    A frequent question Global Contract Manufacturers face is when a customer is looking for a factory or specific skill set already in production.  While that may work with more commoditized products (think wing-nuts or sheet metal screws) it may lead to IP (Intellectual Property) issues down the road.  Working direct with a factory ‘overseas’ offers you little or no protection of your IP if you go it alone.  If the factory you choose is already engaged in the same vertical, what’s protection do you have from the sharing YOUR IP with their other customers?  Exactly, “nothing”. 

    Our takeaway:  A Contract Manufacturer is an Insurance Policy.

Are you looking the perfect Contract Manufacturer? Check out our FREE white paper below and read our "7 Essential Questions to Ask When Choosing a Strategic Manufacturing Partner."




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