You may not realize it, but many of the products you purchase at retail stores or online aren’t made by the brands you cherish. Many of the largest companies only focus on their sales, marketing, and advertising. That means someone else does the manufacturing and assembly for them. Those selected partners are called contract manufacturers, and they can just do some of the design and manufacturing or all of it. This gives the original brand or equipment manufacturer the flexibility to choose how much of the product they want or need to focus on while their partners complete the rest.
How Does Contract Manufacturing Work?
In the complete contract manufacturing life cycle of a product, there are many stages in pre-production, manufacturing, and then delivery to the end-customer. For an injection molded product, that means the plastic injection molding contract manufacturer could be in charge for designing a portion or a complete assembly, completing the injection molds, running pre-production samples, then completing the manufacturing process through distribution. It’s a lot to cover, and not every company offering contract injection molding can do every facet of the process.
Before you start to search for a partner that offers contract manufacturing, you need to assess what operations you need for your new product to be successfully brought to the market. You may have a 3-D design in SolidWorks already to go but can’t create the injection molding tooling or mold the physical parts. You may have the distribution and global logistics covered after the products are made, so at that point you just need to find a reputable injection molding contract manufacturing partner to complement your opportunities.
What Are the Advantages of Contract Manufacturing?
Every company does something well, and contract manufacturing is about finding partners that excel in areas that your business doesn’t. Some of the advantages of contract manufacturing include integrated design and rapid prototyping, streamlined production trials, and cost-effective turn-key production manufacturing processes. This allows your business to focus on its strengths, and offers the other responsibilities to your contract manufacturing partner.
You may find that you can save cost in multiple areas of the product cycle by contracting out portions of the process. They may include:
Rapid Prototyping – Your initial concept may just start as a sketch, and then progress to a 3-D computer design. In order to wow your investors, or drum up new business partners, you may need a rapid prototype to showcase your design in person. Prototyping can include machining, 3-D printing, or rapid injection molding. It’s meant to ensure accurate samples with a quick turn-around time.
Facilities and equipment – You may need floor space to complete your project, and contract manufacturing partners can offer a portion of their facility and potentially equipment to assemble or complete secondary process. It can save on investment costs for major equipment.
Maintenance – You may find that you only need to run one shift of production initially to complete your orders. Having a maintenance staff to prepare and repair your equipment may not be cost effective, and your partner may have a full staff that can just be there when needed. You only need to pay for the on-demand time they offer service, and nothing more.
Trained labor – Finding quality assembly personnel is getting tougher every year. They can take weeks to get up to speed on equipment operation, and how to assemble various components to your finished product. Your contract manufacturer will have a dedicated staff trained on equipment that can be ready to manufacture your product with minimum training and equipment set-up.
Packaging and logistics – Once your product is manufactured, you may need specialized packaging and shipping options to your customers. Your contract manufacturing partner may offer simple packaging, then shipment via an established distribution carrier. You may find that one unique facet of your brand is a personalized experience with the product. That may take unique packaging with laser marking, then exclusive packaging with individual tracking. Whatever your business needs, be sure to find the right partner that can offer the attention to detail that you require.
What Does SEA-LECT Plastics Offer for Contract Manufacturing?
SEA-LECT Plastics is a complete turn-key supplier when it comes to contract manufacturing. We offer manufacturing options including injection molding, assembly, and secondary operations. We have a dedicated in-house injection mold tooling division that can create new molds and repair older molds to make them ready for new creations. We have design engineers that can bring your product to life, as well as, molding experts that can troubleshoot designs to make them more cost effective to produce. SEA-LECT Plastics can source new materials for the best prices, and offer suggestions on which resin would best suit your new product. We also package and ship across the globe in bulk or as small as one piece to accommodate our contract partner’s needs.
When it comes time to find a new plastic injection molding contract manufacturing partner, or perhaps replace one that isn’t performing to the level required, SEA-LECT Plastics should be at the top of your list. We offer a complete team of experts that can design, troubleshoot, manufacture, and distribute your products around the world. Our options will offer advantages that can save you development time, manufacturing process management, and investment capital. When you’re ready to work with our elite team that produces world-class prototypes and products, call (425) 339-0288 or email us at email@example.com. We look forward to offering support and advice on your next project. We support the medical and healthcare industries, our military branches, and many consumer product industries. We have every option you need for your next product.
Matthias Poischbeg was born and raised in Hamburg, Germany. Matt moved to Everett, Wash., after finishing his bachelor’s degree in business in 1995 to work for Sea-Dog Corporation, a manufacturer, and distributor of marine and rigging hardware established in 1923.
In 1999, Matt took over the reins at Sea-Lect Plastics Corporation, a sister company of Sea-Dog and a manufacturer of plastic injection molded products with an in-house tool & die shop. Matthias Poischbeg is also a contributor to Grit Daily.