Why startups, inventors, and product designers are choosing stateside manufacturers
Like any industry, the world of product design experiences its share of trends, transformations, and evolutions in the shifting business landscape. While there are plenty of reasons to be excited about the future of industrial product design, one of the most positive developments in recent months has been the significant uptick in companies who are entrusting U.S. manufacturers with their products.
For years, overseas manufacturing facilities were the go-to choice for everyone from established companies to fresh startups. But that’s beginning to change, and the result is a huge boost for the U.S. manufacturing and product design market that we couldn’t be more happy to see here at Beyond Design. We’ve experienced this trend firsthand, as we’re working with more and more local manufacturers to help complete our clients’ many and varied projects.
Let’s explore this trend toward U.S. manufacturing and why more and more startups are keeping their production stateside.
Why Startups are Staying Home for Design & Production
Wondering why more and more startups and other companies are sticking to the U.S. when it comes to their manufacturing needs? Here are five of the most common reasons.
Faster Time to Market
One of the most popularly cited advantages for startups manufacturing their products in the U.S. is that it allows them to get those products to market more quickly. Overseas manufacturing can come with extended timetables, due to many distance-related factors. These can range from vetting trips, where startup representatives must travel to overseas facilities in person to check whether they’re viable, to substantial freight shipping times that can stretch into the months.
Lower Quantity Productions
Large overseas manufacturers often require minimum volumes in order to accept orders. This can put small startups looking for small production runs in a tough spot. Even for those manufacturers that don’t require a minimum order, the logistics and costs involved with managing an overseas project can make them unviable.
Meanwhile, here in the U.S., plenty of manufacturing facilities are capable of managing small production runs with a high level of quality and speed. That’s increasing the appeal of stateside manufacturing for startups around the country. U.S. manufacturers are also beginning to take on more and more small productions, giving companies more options to choose from when selecting the manufacturer for their projects.
Gone are the days when the most advanced manufacturing technology was only available overseas. Now American manufacturers have the most cutting-edge technology when it comes to manufacturing any type of product, from large-scale machinery to 3D printing that allows for intricate designs and a wide range of materials.
One of the most exciting advancements in manufacturing that is becoming widespread here in the U.S. is robotic manufacturing and automated design. At Beyond Design, we’re increasingly working with manufacturers with these capabilities that are transforming the way products are created and manufactured.
Better Quality Control
Manufacturing stateside also brings the benefit of making quality control more straightforward to manage. When a facility is local, or at least a short flight away, companies can oversee quality in person to whatever degree they wish. They’re also able to ensure that their manufacturers adhere to U.S. quality standards, which may not be the case overseas.
Communicating with overseas manufacturers has plenty of built-in roadblocks. Dramatically different time zones can be an issue on their own, with business hours that don’t overlap and schedules that never seem to line up for calls, meetings, or other communication. Meanwhile, there can sometimes be a language barrier when working with foreign manufacturers, and even a minor miscommunication can lead to significant delays or excess costs.
With U.S.-based manufacturing, these risks are virtually eliminated. Streamlined communication has made more and more startups eager to work with domestic manufacturers rather than going abroad.
Your Partner for U.S. Design, Manufacturing, & More
At Beyond Design, we’re proud to work with a range of domestic manufacturers on every type of product and project you can imagine. Our team of industrial design experts maintains close relationships with some of the most trusted manufacturers for startups and enterprises alike.
Contact us today to learn more about what we do, how we do it, and why we’re one of the most trusted product design firms in the industry.