Why use a contract electronics manufacturer – lessons we can learn from Apple12th January 2017
Contract Electronic Manufacturing (CEM) or Electronic Manufacturing Service (EMS) is a unique resource that can help companies save money while continuing to offer certified products that meet the quality standards demanded by the wider market, by them partnering with a specialised, outsourced production partner.
One common myth is that CEM or EMS is just for small or medium sized companies. Not true - even multi-million dollar companies like Apple can see the benefits of the model - Apple concentrates on two things: it designs products; then markets and sells them. Everything in the middle that is not a core process – i.e. the manufacturing and process control - is outsourced to a specialist contractor or manufacturing partner.
Since their birth in the 1970s and 80s, CEMs have come a long way with much more sophisticated production techniques and processes available today, enabling the companies that partner with them to offer certified and credible products that meet high quality standards. For example, recently at Offshore Electronics,we invested more than £500,000 to expand our capabilities. Our new flexible surface mount production line complements our two existing lines and includes the latest generation digital screen printer, precision placement machines and reflow soldering equipment, capable of up to 56,000 placements per hour.
However, having the newest technology available is not the only advantage of using a CEM as a manufacturing partner. It is also the ability to use their expertise to advise on the design for production and ensure that the product is manufactured correctly and efficiently right from the start, using approved components and processes.Today, businesses must comply with a wide range of product related manufacturing regulations, and this can be a huge challenge for a small design-led company.
So just like Apple, small firms shouldn’t shy away from taking on a contract manufacturer, when they are coping with production by themselves. The greater efficiencies that an experienced CEM can bring – such as economies of scale, testing expertise and a rigorous electronics production process – can lead to significant cost savings and vastly improved product quality. It really is a win win! To find out more about Offshore Electronics and the way we work please email [email protected]