The production process can be one of the scariest ones for a startup to tackle. If you’re new to it, the costs can get rather serious rather quickly. So before you start bringing your product to life, consider some of the methods that might just help you cut the costs of them.
Reconsider the materials you’re using
You might want to jump into the production process as soon as you have a design completed. But take the time to look over that design. Think of changes you can make in regards to the materials used. Can you change the shape so it requires less work to produce? Or can you change the materials themselves? In making these changes, make sure you always have the end product in mind. Some kinds of steel in your products might cheaper and lighter, but they might also be more vulnerable to corrosion.
Ease up on the hydraulics
Most traditional methods of making products use hydraulics. These are effective ways of powering the process, but they’re costly. That’s because they use energy even when they’re not working. There are a lot of electrically powered alternatives to help you cut those energy costs, however. For example, if you’re using plastics, then you want to consider electric custom injection molding. Digitally controlled and efficient, these kinds can use from 50% to 75% less energy than hydraulic methods.
Eliminate waste from the process
If efficiency is what makes the production line great, then waste is its mortal enemy. The Seven Wastes are a great rule you should apply to your process. How much money, time and fuel are you wasting on transport? How much material is wasted due to defects in manufacturing and poor machine maintenance? How much time is wasted correcting mistakes in the process? These are the questions you should ask of the production line on a regular basis. Identify waste and remove it.
Be a slick negotiator
The process isn’t the only thing that goes into the cost of production, however. The materials and services you use are just as important. If you’re beginning a long-term relationship with a supplier, then be aware of the room you have to negotiate. In business to business relationships, loyalty and reliability are important. More important, sometimes, than short-term gain. Be willing to ask for reduced prices from your providers.
Don’t do it all yourself
Taking on the costs of manufacturing and everything around it at once can be a big risk. Instead, you should consider the slow but steady approach to business. Outsource what you can for a better deal, until you grow to the point where you’re able to handle it more effective. Logistics, human resources, accounting, these are all management migraines you could do better without.
The production line is rife with opportunities to cut costs. From the design of your products to the energy and materials you’re wasting on a daily basis. Consider the methods above and how they can help you get more value for less cost.