5 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Contract Manufacturer

There are many factors to consider when selecting a contract manufacturing partner, and companies must do their research to identify the right one. Price is, of course, a huge consideration. Still, there are many additional elements to consider when selecting a partner.

Choosing the best contract manufacturer may seem daunting since there are many options. Below are five key questions to ask when selecting a contract manufacturer.

1. What Is the Manufacturer's History?

Companies must do their homework to understand better the background of each contract manufacturer they are evaluating. For example, how long have they been in business, who were their previous clients and have they won any awards or been recognized within the industry?

You want an established partner with a proven history and repeat customers. Additionally, ensure potential partners have ample experience working with a company of your size and in your industry.

2. What Solutions Do They Offer?

Not all manufacturing partners offer the same range of solutions. You need to be clear on the requirements for your application and if a potential partner provides solutions that meet your needs. Partners with a variety of offerings may be in a better position to provide support as your business grows over time.

For this reason, companies must partner with an experienced manufacturer like RiverSide Integrated Solutions (RIS), which offers a broad range of integrated solutions.

3. Is Their Quality Program Robust?

Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) need an experienced manufacturing partner familiar with the production planning required to meet all of the regulatory and quality standards. Additionally, OEMs need to ensure that a partner is providing them with a dependable process.

A supplier’s quality planning and assurance program is more than just meeting the requisite ISO and FDA requirements. Instead, it represents their proven way of ensuring consistent, high-quality products.

4. What Level of Customer Support Do They Provide?

Most OEMs have unique and specific product specifications, and it is crucial that you find a contract manufacturer that understands and can comply with those specifications.

Additionally, it is essential to identify any extra services and customer support that a potential partner provides. For example, is it easy to contact the partner with technical support questions? You will want to discuss these topics to understand the level of customer support provided once manufacturing is underway.

5. Do They Offer Value-Added Operations?

It is crucial to understand if the potential partner offers value-add services such as supply chain management, kitting and other secondary operations to complete your project. These secondary operations provide significant value for OEMs, such as streamlining production schedules, improving the consistency and reliability of the final product and minimizing the number of vendors involved in the manufacturing process. All of these steps improve efficiency, which saves OEMs time, resources and money.

In the end, you are not simply looking for a supplier; you are looking for a trusted partner that can help your business grow. A true manufacturing partner asks for input and listens to customers, offering solutions that ensure both parties are aligned and satisfied.

Also, every manufacturer has unique company culture and relationships with its customers, so ensure you mesh well with any potential partners. You will need an atmosphere of good communication and a spirit of collaboration from the start. Do not ignore any red flags you note during the evaluation process – they will not go away after the partner is selected.

About RiverSide Integrated Solutions

RIS is an advanced contract manufacturer providing robust solutions in circuit board assembly and product assembly. We employ more than 350 people and provide services to OEMs worldwide. We operate two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities within the US.

With all of the choices in contract manufacturers out there, we know it can be challenging to find someone who understands your business model and has your best intentions in mind. RIS has always proven to be a win-win-focused relationship.

As your one-stop shop, we have the capabilities, capacity, quality assurance standards and resources to support all of your manufacturing needs. We understand that supply chain management is complex and very time-consuming, so we urge our customers to utilize us in the fullest capacity.

Our total-package solutions include:

Contact us today at (507) 523-3220 to see how we can help with your manufacturing project, or click contact us for a quote.

5 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Contract Manufacturer
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5 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Contract Manufacturer
Important questions to ask when selecting a contract manufacturer with a strong history and excellent quality, that offers what you need.
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RiverSide Integrated Solutions
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