Many businesses in all sectors of the economy require a manufacturing partner who they can work closely alongside. However, when you are making a decision as important as this one, it makes sense that you take your time and choose one wisely. Check out these tips for helping you decide which one will be the best for your business.
Check Their Capabilities
It may seem like a highly obvious starting point to begin with, but you want to check the capabilities of the potential manufacturing partner to ensure that they are capable of doing what you want – whether this is GF Laser with their ability to laser cut aluminium or a company that focuses on plastic manufacturing. Double check their references to see if they have worked with any similar companies to your own. It is also worth asking plenty of questions. It is much better to know everything at this early stage rather than going too far down the road and finding out that they are not capable of everything that you had initially thought.
Think About Location Logistics
These days, many manufacturing partners are still located overseas, which can cut down on costs, but obviously presents a whole host of location-based logistical challenges along the way as well. Therefore, it is worth considering in closer detail whether a local manufacturing partner would be more beneficial. Of course, you are going to have to be certain that you can absorb the increased costs. On the other side of the coin, you can use the fact that you manufacture locally as a way of selling the benefits of your business to others. If you are still planning on manufacturing abroad, you need to take the time to think about the other factors that could still play a role such as language and/or cultural barriers.
Arrange a Strong Communication Channel
Once you have got it down to a shortlist of potential candidates, you should then establish strong communications between the two of you. The most likely route that you are going to go down is to nominate someone from each respective business to stay in touch with one another. You should also establish whether the majority of your communications are going to be done via emails, whether you are going to set up regular monthly phone or video calls etc.
Establish Your Terms Clearly
Everybody needs to be on the same page before you commit to an agreement – quite literally. This means that you should have your contract written out and everybody reads it carefully to know exactly what you are all agreeing to. If there are any disputes along the way, you have a clear document that you can keep referring back to time and time again. You should also arrange how long the agreement is expected to last, whether there is going to be a break clause in the middle etc.
Following the above steps closely will go a long way towards ensuring that you establish a strong working relationship with your manufacturing partner right from the get-go.