At Four Elements Product Development, we pride ourselves on being able to work with our clients from the inception of their product to the development stage and finally to production. Some of our clients choose to have their products manufactured by outside companies. However, because we have developed a strong relationship with them and because they trust us, many request us to serve as a manufacturing liaison and project management service. This means that we will interact with outside manufacturing companies on behalf of our clients when it comes to answering questions regarding production, quality, and design. Of course, our primary objective is to guarantee that our client’s vision for their product is what is being manufactured.
Successfully producing a quality product and doing it within a particular time frame requires good communication. Communication between the engineers, designers, and manufacturers reduces production time, minimizes conflict, and minimizes additional cost. Our project managers spend a good portion of their time communicating both with our engineers and with the outside manufacturing company.
One of the biggest challenges that arise when interacting with an outside manufacturing plant is that it is necessary to coordinate several departments so that they can communicate seamlessly and prevent project failures. Project failures greatly increase the duration of a project and will result in added costs as a consequence. Manufacturing experts agree that communicative difficulties are the primary reason why most manufacturing projects fall apart.
Our project managers have years of experience developing relationships with manufacturers. They understand that frequent communication is the key to building a successful working relationship. They also realize that good communication skills lead to everyone being interested in the project.
Misinterpretations between the design and engineering side of manufacturing can cause some huge problems and delays. Our project managers understand not only how to communicate but how to do so in a way that is clearly understood. If the situation calls for it, they will engage in face-to-face communication, or they may communicate via email, telephone, or video chat. Whatever the method they use, their goal is to be as precise as possible, make sure manufacturers pay attention, and make sure they understand what your needs as a client are.
Our project managers are experts at bridging. They understand that if manufacturers feel that they have a vested interest in seeing your project turn out successfully, they will give it the attention it deserves. For this reason our project managers work to develop the ‘we mentality’ when working with outside manufacturers. They make it clear to everyone involved in the project that all are working towards the same goal, that of producing your product in the way that you want it made. Our experience has shown that bridging helps improve function and efficiency.
When communicating with manufacturers, our project managers have a clearly defined communication plan. They ask themselves five essential questions in order to guarantee that the ideas of your product are transmitted clearly to manufacturers.
- What information is required?
- Who needs to receive this information?
- When you do they need the information?
- How will the information be organized and distributed?
- Who will provide it?
We have seen through years of experience that when dealing with manufacturers it is best to centralize communications. Working with joint databases makes it easier for all to find the information that they need and to access it faster. Sharing performance reports, forecasts, and changes in schedules and other documents pertaining to the production of your product makes it easier for both teams to communicate with one another and to address problems that might arise as quickly as possible. This allows us to complete your product and bring it to market within the time frame you stipulate.
For more than three decades, we have had the privilege of working with Fortune 500 companies, large-scale manufacturers, and customers from around the world. Our manufacturing team along with our engineers and designers have earned the trust and respect of the people we work with. We understand the importance of trust in order to reach our goal- that of helping you create and produce a product that exceeds your expectations and within the time frame and budget you stipulate.
At Four Elements Production Development, our mission is to help you focus on your core business and let us handle the product development. We are not just designers and engineers. We are creative thinkers. We solve problems. We look forward to working with you in the development of your new product.