Choosing a reliable rapid prototyping partner is crucial for production projects, that is why product designers, technology designers, or engineering designers shouldn’t be lenient when choosing the company providing rapid prototyping services. The process of choosing the best prototyping partner goes beyond the basic factors like cost, speed, and quality of the services. There are other significant factors in the decision-making stakes.
For instance, it depends on the type of organization you work with. Is it a design consultancy or manufacturer/OEM? Or, how much and how often will you need prototyping services? Or whether your organization has In house resources or would like to outsource the prototyping services? If you are considering outsourcing rapid prototyping services, here are some factors that you should consider first:
Understanding the product development process
The process of choosing the company providing prototyping services starts with you having everything in place in the production process development, including the production design. You need to have everything clear, from the design concept to production design, to prototyping to development, testing, and to further production manufacturing.
The experts at the reputed companies offering rapid prototyping services are knowledgeable and have experience in these various phases of product development. The staff, including engineers, model makers, tool makers, and finishers, are skilled to provide efficient services like SLA, SLS, CNC, and vacuum casting.
The prototyping partner you are considering for the production project should be making investments in the latest machines and technologies. The more investment they will do, the faster they are going to be able to turn around orders for you. For instance, if you need your RP part the next day and the prototyping partner you hired has access only to 1 or 2 machines, then he will not be able to deliver the part the next day. You will need to hire 3rd party to meet the requirements of your order. So, make sure the rapid prototyping partner company you are choosing has an efficient infrastructure and is capable of meeting your project requirements.
Quick response to quote request
As they say, actions speak louder than words. The company should be responsive to your queries within the appropriate time. If the company couldn’t respond to the quote request you made within 2-3 days, how are they going to help you complete the production order within the deadline? Look for companies to work with who are responsive to your queries. It speaks a lot about the company’s professionalism.
Industrial prototyping machines and equipment require huge investments ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars. While there are companies who can show you the investments they have made in their infrastructure, but can it beat the companies who have made investments over the years with evolving industry patterns and have experienced how things work in the manufacturing industry?
The experience of prototyping companies is of significant advantage to the clients. So, it would be wise to choose a company that has been in business for decades.
Choosing a prototyping company will be easier for you now if you consider the above-mentioned points before finalizing the deal. Discuss all the necessary details of the project with the prototyping company so that there will be no hindrance in the production process.