Prototyping services are critical to new product development, but this is a process that should never be treated as “something you are expected to do”, but instead it should serve as fuel to move the manufacturing process forward while reducing costs, improving functionality, improving the user experience, and getting the final product to market before the competition. When working with a product development company offering prototyping services, it is important to make sure they gain full insight into your product, and work with your team (while taking lead) in determining how best to manufacture the necessary parts. Without a process like this, you can hardly call it “prototyping”; you are simply sailing through a “step” at the expense of your time and money, while jeopardizing your overall investment.
This article is intended to help product development leadership teams learn how to tell if they have partnered with the best prototyping services that are worth their investment and that is leading to a finalized project that will be deemed successful.
Prototyping Services Should Fit the Bill
Unfortunately, some companies offering prototyping services cut corners and neglect many of the steps in prototyping. This is why brands need to hold their prototyping company accountable by ensuring they follow the necessary steps. Just keep in mind that a unique project will have different developer needs from various prototyping offerings, and as such, each new product may find value in different avenues initiated by prototyping services. As for traditional qualities of a successful prototyping project, make sure your prototyping services are rooted from the following:
Real-World Functionality – The product and its calibrations should reflect the needs surrounding real-world functionality.
Working Relationship – Successful prototyping services should illustrate how a product interacts with and fits with other components, and whether adjustments in design are required to garner a better working relationship with other parts involved in the piece’s overall functionality.
Aesthetic Considerations – Prototyping services should keep aesthetic considerations front and center throughout every step of the process. Make sure the prototyping services provider provides your team with a facsimile of the end product’s aesthetics while giving an outline on how the aesthetics stay in tune to your needs and goals.
Raises Production Questions – Successful prototyping services will be conducted by engineers and designers who bring questions to the table that haven’t already been posed by your internal team. Thus is critical when it comes to improving the product’s overall design.
Shows Proof of Process – Successful prototyping services must show a projection of the process testifying to the flawless execution and outcome.
Sufficient Proof of Production Readiness – The best prototyping services will demonstrate confidence in your team that the product is ready to move to the production phase based on data collected from running tests and analyzation.
Budget – The company offering prototyping services must show how the project fits within your company’s budget, even with the projection of potential agile changes and additional testing.
Successful prototyping services are offered by experts who forecast a number of scenarios, and have actionable plans put in place to move quickly, while staying aligned with your company’s goals and needs. The above points are critical for the project’s success, and you should expect nothing less from the company you partner with offering the prototyping services that will take your brand to the next level.
Does the Company Offering Prototyping Services Truly Understand Your Requirements?
There is no such thing as “cookie-cutter” prototyping, so to ensure that your prototyping services are unique to your product, it is vital to gain proof that they truly understand your product requirements and goals. This point was previously touched on, but it is worth remembering. When looking at the design components be sure to note if these provide solutions to certain challenges, and have your internal team seek an inquest to see how the specifics apply to your organization’s needs. In order for prototyping services to be successful, the designers and engineers you hire must have deep knowledge of your requirements across the board.
What are the Specialties that Makeup Your Prototyping Services?
Successful prototyping services will be comprised of specialties; the prototyping company you work with should have a wide range of manufacturing specialties for two main reasons: (1) you never know when other services might be needed as things emerge in the prototyping development process, and (2) when manufacturing companies have a wide range of specialties, it is a testimony to their skills and aptitude. When working with a manufacturing specialist that offers prototyping services, be sure they also perform the following specialty services performed by industry experts:
- Injection molding (plastics, metals and other materials)
- Investment casting tooling
- Injection mold tool design and manufacturing
- CNC production machining
- Product design
- Product engineering
- Secondary manufacturing
- Finishing operations
- Value analysis and value engineering (VAVE)
The chance that your prototyping services will be successful is heavily predicated on the tools, methods, and specialties that can be performed under the same roof, as challenges and needs evolve and spring up in real time.
Call Laszeray for the Best Prototyping to Ensure Your Products are Successful
Laszeray has decades of experience in providing companies in a wide range of industries with highly successful prototyping services. Our team includes engineers and designers specializing in specific disciplines that tie into prototyping to ensure our clients get the best service in the country. Call today so we can understand your project, and have a consultation with your team. Together, we can create a superior product, under budget, and get it to the market in record time.