Contract Electronics Manufacturing and PCB Assembly Blog

All-In-One Contract Electronic Assembly Lowers Your Costs

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Thu, Aug 27, 2015 @ 07:00 AM

PCB-ServicesSometimes, it just makes sense to keep your business under one roof.

Demand is higher for electronics today than ever before, and at the same time, electronics manufacturing requires ever-greater levels of skill and precision to deliver top-quality products.  Older methods of outsourcing different aspects of production are having trouble keeping up with this, as the layers of sub-contractors often cannot coordinate sufficiently well to produce a truly high-quality end product.

Hiring a single-source contract electronic assembly firm can easily result in better products, as well as bringing cost benefits throughout the manufacturing process.

5 Ways Full-Service Contract Electronic Assembly Firms Lower Costs

1 - Surface-Mount Board Optimizations

When your manufacturing partner utilizes the most modern Surface Mount Technologies, it can lead to big refinements in your board design as well as significant cost-cutting.  SMT-based components are significantly smaller than alternatives, as well as very often being less expensive.  Additionally, SMT designs allow you to utilize both sides of a circuit board, potentially cutting entire unnecessary PCBs from the final product design.

2 - Alternative Component Sourcing

Manufacturing centers which have been in business for a significant amount of time have a huge range of component manufacturers to choose from.  Often, small changes in component sources and slight adjustments to the build can pay off with substantially reduced per-unit manufacturing costs, with little or no reduction in overall product quality.  

Additionally, a full-service provider can provide a bigger picture look at your component costs.  Aspects such as shipping time and fuel, or the availability of spare parts, can be utilized to further optimize your build costs.  In a markets where price is always a consideration, small optimizations can bring big price cuts when the product comes to market.

3 - Rapid Prototyping

When your contract electronic assembly service can provide prototypes more quickly and at lower cost than hiring a separate third-party for prototyping, that translates into pure savings.  It can also generate additional feedback loops, refining the design, as well as guaranteeing that that final build is an exact match to the prototype it's based on.

4 - Predictive Failure TestingEMS-Electronics2

When all your prototyping, design, and production is handled by one company, this brings increased knowledge and awareness of product issues across the board.  Every component can be tracked for likely failure rates, with component buys and system build quantities computed ahead of time to allow for likely post-sale support needs.

This can lower long-run costs by preventing the need for special small-batch orders due to an unexpected defect or high failure rates on a particular component.  Buying everything up-front ensures you're getting the lowest per-part costs.

5 - Repairs Rather Than Replacements

When assembly is done overseas, or multiple third parties have different roles in the manufacturing process, actual repair work becomes difficult or impossible to achieve in a timely and cost-effective fashion.  Unfortunately, this leads to huge waste, as entire replacement builds have to be sent out when a single component is likely at fault.

A manufacturer equipped to also handle post-sale support generates cost-savings throughout the support window, by lowering the per-customer costs for any warranty claims. 

If you're looking for a better way to bring electronics to market, ZenTech has the solution.  Contact us today for a full consultation on how single-source manufacturing can make your products better.

Latent Defects In Underfill

Topics: Contract Electronic Assembly, electronic assembly

Good Inventory And Supply Chain Management Is Vital For Modern Electronics

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Tue, Jul 14, 2015 @ 07:30 AM

Domestic-Assembly-SolutionsIn most industries, good inventory management is important.  In contract electronics, it's absolutely mission-critical for products to succeed. 

With contract electronics assembly, your inventory of parts and supplies plays a much bigger part in the overall success of a product, and of your business.  A single bad $1 component can ruin a $100+ piece of electronics.  This is an especially big issue with overseas assembly.  There are plenty of stories of major businesses either not receiving the products ordered or discovering that counterfeit components had been used.  Even the US Air Force fell victim.

Beyond the immediate impact,  there are several other major ways that modern protected inventory oversight can bring significant benefits to your production process.  Let's take a look.

Four Ways You Benefit From Robust Inventory Management

1 - Per-component tagging brings peace of mind.

In modern factories and supply lines, it's entirely possible to track each individual component, from initial factory to final build... when you have the right partners.  Using either RFID or barcodes, computerized systems can keep track of them, with full database lookups\auditing to ensure there aren't any irregularities.

This vastly reduces the chances of poorly-manufactured counterfeits slipping into your products and causing trouble.  Not to mention, poor products often make headlines today.  A single "dud" product can sometimes sink a company's reputation.

2 - Improved product troubleshooting.

One of the biggest "hidden" impacts from counterfeit parts is the trouble they cause for your engineers.  If a product begins to fail unexpectedly, and the engineers don't know the supply line is secure, finding the source of the problem can be nearly impossible.  This is doubly true if the substitutions are only in some units, but not others.  

A buggy product made from compromised parts may not be salvageable without a complete rebuild.

3 - Easier supply line reconfiguration.pc-Electronics-Assembly

Another issue that can arise due to fake parts is that they cannot be reliably replaced by other sources.  We sometimes hear horror stories of products built from the ground up with counterfeit parts that, perversely, are then not compatible with actual components because of minor discrepancies.

And, again, the only solution here is a full rebuild and a new batch order.

When you're working with a manufacturer who guarantees the provenance of their components, that means they'll be able to find other guaranteed sources for those components, if you need to shift your supply lines.  You'll know it's the same component, fitting the same place on your circuit board, every time.

4 - Predictive parts ordering.

On the other hand, if you know your supply lines are secure, you can then begin to leverage that to bring future benefits.  The average failure rates of official components will be well-known, and can be used to predict how many replacement parts are likely to be needed for post-sale service.

In turn, this means you can optimize your orders ahead of time, to pre-stock components based on their predicted failure rates.  This is significantly less expensive than running extra production runs later, to acquire parts your support staff has run out of.

ZenTech is one of America's leading contract electronics manufacturers, proudly US-based since its creation.  Our experts can guarantee the legitimacy of every part we use, while leveraging our supply line knowledge to save money.  Contact ZenTech today for more information.

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: contract electronic manufacturing, Contract Electronic Assembly

5 Ways You Can Reduce Your Electronic Assembly Expenses

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Tue, Jun 02, 2015 @ 09:00 AM

 Electronic ManufacturerThese days, everyone is looking for new ways to scale back their spending and become a more profitable business. Although it may seem counter-intuitive, hiring a contract manufacturing company to assist you with the design and assembly of the PC boards for your products is one of the best ways for electronics companies to save money. How can spending money on a third party manufacturing service actually allow you to increase your bottom line and thrive? Here, we'll take a look at some of the many ways that a contract manufacturer can help you to achieve your business goals.

5 Ways a Contract Manufacturer Can Reduce Your Electronic Assembly Expenses

1. Reduce Design Time

Even if your design and engineering team is skilled and experienced, the design process itself can be very time-consuming and can present issues - even more the most seasoned veterans. When tackling a new project, your staff my come across problems that they experience difficulty in overcoming. This may require them to go back to the drawing board and start anew, or simply get "stuck", preventing the project from moving forward. The advantage of having a contract manufacturer on your team is that a fresh set of eyes will be introduced to the issue and can help you to more quickly complete your plans. A contract manufacturer is also useful in situations where your design team is overwhelmed by a large volume of projects, or you need help completing protocol specs on a tight deadline.

2. Lower Equipment Expenses

One of the biggest problems that smaller electronics companies are faced with is their lack of funding or resources. Because a small scale operation will generally bring in less profit than major corporations, it can be difficult for the underdog to keep up with the competition in terms of purchasing the latest and greatest machinery and equipment for electronics assembly processes. When you have a partnership with a contract manufacturing company in place, you no longer have to worry about this. Your partner company will shoulder the burden of purchasing state-of-the-art equipment so that your boards can be assembled with the best of the best machinery available. You'll also enjoy savings on equipment maintenance, and won't be required to store the equipment within your facility which can reduce space needs and rent costs. 

3. Increase Production Speed & PrecisionContract Electronic Manufacturer

Wouldn't it be great if you had the ability to mass produce your PC boards faster than you are currently able, without being required to sacrifice the quality of your products? Knowledgable and experienced contract manufacturing companies with advanced electronics design and assembly equipment will have the ability to not only process your batch orders with speed, but also with painstaking accuracy. Boards are then tested to avoid problems with malfunctioning devices.

4. Spend Less on Parts

The costs associated with the parts and components used to assemble your product's PC boards can really add up. Contract manufacturing companies can help you to reduce those costs in 2 ways. First, by reviewing your plans carefully, a contract manufacturer may notice ways to make the board more efficient and compact. Secondly, contract manufacturing businesses will have long-established relationships with suppliers, resulting in a lower cost for parts.

5. Minimize Warranty Replacements

When something goes wrong with a PC board, many small electronics companies do not have the means to correct the issue, but simply choose to cut their losses and offer the customer a warranty replacement. In many cases, though, repairs would be much cheaper. When you work with a contract manufacturer, you will have someone on your team with the time to troubleshoot for the underlying problem, make the necessary corrections, and return the product to the customer. 

Sometimes you have to spend money to make money. Hiring a contract manufacturer to assist with your electronics assembly processes is an excellent investment that will benefit you in the long run. 

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: Contract Electronic Assembly, electronic assembly

Steps to Successful PCB Assembly

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Tue, Mar 10, 2015 @ 06:00 AM

PCB-ServicesThese days, electronics are everything. We are all wired in, whether for communication, work, or recreation. At the very heart of all of our electronics devices are the PC boards that allow them to operate and function as intended. As the years go by, the need for these boards to become more dense, more complex, and yet more compact has become even greater. As  a result, electronics companies must understand and anticipate consumer needs so as to develop boards and products that will sell and satisfy. Despite the fact that most consumers will never give a second though to the boards running their devices, this is arguably the most important part of product development. Do you know what goes into the design and assembly of your PC boards? Read on to learn more.

The PCB Assembly Process

In a world obsessed with aesthetics and appearances, PCBs must be assembled carefully so as to meet product specifications while still being compact and flexible enough for design purposes. This means that engineers and manufacturers have a lot more to consider during the design and assembly process than ever before. Here's a look at 3 steps to follow throughout PCB assembly:

1. Design & Testing

Your board's design is the roadmap for your entire project. Without a solid design in place, you will end up with a sub-par device that doesn't meet consumer demands and that won't function as intended or desired. For this reason, the design process is extremely important. Some companies prefer to listen to customer needs and create their own schematics from scratch. Others prefer to pass these demands along to a contract design and manufacturing service for help. In either case, the utmost attention to detail is required. This is the phase in which you can decide what components and parts are required, how they will be fitted to and arranged on the board, and how they will work together. This will determine how efficiently and effectively the board will work, as well as its size limitations. For best results, it's advisable to get a second opinion from an industry professional who may be able to spot any problem areas and make improvements. Testing should also be conducted to ensure that production doesn't go underway on an inadequate device. 

2. State-of-the-Art Technology 

In order to keep up with the competition, your boards must be assembled with the latest and greatest technologies. The difficulty involved with crafting smaller and more compact boards that are still extremely dense demands the use of advanced machinery and robotic arms. Never hesitate to talk to your contract manufacturer about the technologies they are currently using for board assembly

3. Troubleshooting and RepairProfessional-Electronics-Design

In order to keep your customers happy, you need to be able to address any issues as they arise. Instead of simply throwing out a faulty unit, your contract manufacturer should be able to troubleshoot for any underlying issues and then make the necessary repairs. This is much more cost-efficient and promotes consumer confidence as you are able to back up the integrity of the board on the whole, only replacing or repairing the necessary component. 

After all has been said and done, the assembly of PCBs involves a lot of care and attention to detail. Regardless of how complex or simple the finalized product may be, the board must be carefully constructed to exact specification. Knowing and understanding all of the required steps is essential to ensuring that your electronics are the best that they can be. 

Is your contract manufacturer following all of the necessary steps to generating a flawless board? 

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: pcb assembly, Contract Electronic Assembly, PCB Assembling

Don't Let Poor Inventory Management Cost You Money

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Thu, Dec 18, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

pc board developmentTightly-controlled inventory management and supply-line tracking is vital for a successful electronics manufacturing process.  Are you doing everything possible to protect the parts that build your products?

Inventory management goes far beyond merely keeping track of all the SKUs currently on sale.  It also means tracking the parts going into the products, since those parts are also potentially going to be used for post-sale support if necessary.   If you can't trust your components to be legitimate and trustworthy, backed by a solid chain-of-possession, then every aspect of your electronics operation may be in jeopardy.

If you haven't thought about the ways that inventory management problems might impact your electronics manufacturing, here are a few things to chew on.

Four Reasons Good Inventory Management Is Vital In Electronics

1 - Reliable Prototyping

If you do your prototyping in-house, it's likely that your R&D squad are using "off the shelf" components in your inventory for much of their experimenting.  To gauge the viability of a prototype, you need to be absolutely certain that the components which have gone into it are legitimate and fully up-to-spec.

Otherwise, if the prototype fails, your staff may end up in a situation that's worse than "square one" because they'll have no solid way of knowing whether the design failed due to their error, or because of faulty components.

2 - True Quality Guarantees

You have to offer a warranty with your product, and the length of the warranty can be a powerful sales tool.  However, the length of the warranty will also largely depend on just how much you trust your products to stand up to months or years of usage.

If you're using unverified or low-quality parts, the fail rate will be higher and the warranty period will necessarily have to be smaller to maintain profits.  This is damaging to the business as a whole, as well as potentially driving customers to manufacturers with better-built products.

Especially since...

3 - Product Failures Make Headlines These Days

From the infamous 20%+ fail rate of early XBox 360 units to more recent questions about the bendyness of iPhones, a poorly-designed consumer electronics product can sometimes drastically affect buyer perception of a brand.  Even a single well-publicized recall could create years worth of poor PR to overcome.

It used to be bad products only made the news if they blew up or caused serious head trauma.  Today, it's just one more piece of bad news fueling the 24/7 media cycle, and it's something any good electronics firm would be wise to avoid.

4 - Post-Sale Support Issuespc board inventory

If you aren't keeping good tabs on your inventory and supply chain, it could cause big cost-overruns on post-sale support.  Every component shipped to a customer and every unit brought in for repair ultimately costs you more money.  If the components shipped out are also faulty, then that just piles unnecessary costs on top of unnecessary costs.

Proper supply line oversight may require some expenditure to set up, but it's a bedrock requirement for an electronics concern that wants to be taken seriously in today's market.  Products known to contain counterfeit parts or generally-shoddy lowest-bidder components are going to quickly turn into money holes.

Partner With An Electronics Supplier Who Can Guarantee Their Parts

The simplest solution to these issues is also the most overall elegant:  Rather than using questionable low-cost manufacturers, hire an electronics assembly plant which has these inventory controls built into their processes.  If your manufacturer can show you, in black and white, the provenance of their parts, then you can put your product on the market with real peace of mind. 

ZenTech is one of America's premiere domestic electronics manufacturers, with in-country assembly lines and tightly-controlled parts protection.  The minimal extra expense associated with domestic work will pay off many times through better products, lower support costs, and better PR.

Contact ZenTech today for a free consultation on your manufacturing options! 


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photo credit: Eric Kilby via photopin cc

photo credit: todbaker via photopin cc

Topics: Contract Electronic Assembly, inventory management, Contract Electronic Manufacturers

Who Do You Trust For Your Electronic Assembly Needs?

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Fri, May 09, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

For small to mid-sized electronic companies, making the decision to outsource their assemblypc board repair electronic processes is a bit of a no-brainer. The cost to work with a third-party professional is often much less than it would be to hire a full team of skilled laborers, and the burden of purchasing and maintaining expensive equipment is removed from your shoulders. When you've got an excellent outsource vendor on your team, you can remain competitive with larger-scale industries and grow your business.

The problem, though, is knowing who you can put your confidence in. Who will have the ability to take care of all of your needs - from design to fulfillment services? Who will process your batch orders in a timely manner? Who will construct your PC boards with the highest quality and most affordable parts? All of these questions must be answered before you can hire an outside company to assist with your product's electronic assembly. This post will help you to distinguish the best from the rest so that you can put your confidence in a superior contract manufacturer.     

Put Your Trust in a Contract Manufacturer Who…

…Has Industry Experience

Startup companies are often quite enthusiastic about taking on new clients, and may even offer irresistibly low prices. It's important to remember, though, that experience pays. You should always look for a business that has been handling electronic assembly for years. Don't' hesitate to ask your prospective contract manufacturer how long they have actually been in business, as well as what their hiring requirements are for their employees. Is their team comprised of seasoned veterans? This is always ideal.

…Is Multi-Talented

Even if you initially think that you'll only need a contract manufacturer for the production aspect of the assembly electronic process, you should take the time to seek out a company that is able to handle a variety of related tasks. At some point in the future you may find that your design and engineering team is stuck on a problem with one of your PC boards, or needs some assistance in coming up with a new prototype for a device on very short notice. In situations like these, its good to know that you have someone on your team who can help you out in your moment of need.

…Is Based in Americapc board repair

Taking your business off shore isn't a good idea for several reasons. First, you are reducing the amount of work that your company is producing for American laborers who are in need. Secondly, many overseas contract manufacturing businesses tend to make use of counterfeit components and parts. While this may not seem like that big of a deal at first glance, it can create big problems. If parts used aren't up to US industry codes and requirements, you could be fined and forced to recall your products. A faulty unit as a result of counterfeit parts can also result in a lawsuit or harm to another person. It's in your best interest to stick with an American company that adheres to a higher standard.

…Is Well-Connected

Save money on the parts that you purchase without having to sacrifice quality or safety by finding a contract manufacturing company that has strongly established relationships with suppliers. This will ensure that you will always get the fairest and lowest prices possible for the components required for your boards. 

…Stands Behind Its Work

Never trust a contract manufacturer who doesn't offer a warranty or stand behind the boards that it produces. While some companies may try to sever ties after the assembly and manufacture process, a trustworthy company will offer fulfillment services, troubleshooting, and repair to reduce warranty replacement costs.     

Finding a contract manufacturer that you can trust with your assembly electronic processes isn't as difficult as you might imagine. By seeking out these characteristics, you can have confidence in your partner and in the quality of your products.   


Topics: Contract Electronic Assembly, contact manufacturers, assembly solutions

Contract Manufacturers Help You Shine

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Wed, Apr 02, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

In case you haven't already noticed, the electronics market is getting more and more competitiveelectronics repair services with every passing year. It really doesn't matter what industry you're working in, either. Whether you're developing high-tech aerospace technology or complex communications devices, you've got to contend with an array of similar products and find a way to stand out. This requires you to be the absolute best in everything from design to marketing and everything in-between. The problem for smaller companies like your own is that you may not have the manpower or resources available to give equal attention to both the creative development side of production, and the actual process of device assembly. If this sounds familiar, contract manufacturers are the solution.

The problem with going it alone

The mistake that many smaller technology-based companies make is spreading themselves too thin. Large businesses may have the money, skilled labor, and resources that are required  to handle the entire production process, but for you, it may not be as easy. 

Your primary goal is to come up with new and innovative products, and sell them to your customers. Through creative thinking and problem-solving techniques, you and your expert team of designers and engineers can develop brand new technology and improve existing products to meet consumer demand and improve the lives of people all over the world. Your sales and marketing team then work to demonstrate the value of your products to the marketplace.

But what about the actual assembly of your devices? The PC boards that give life to your technology are the real "guts" of each gadget, and production needs a great deal of care and attention. Today's consumers are demanding lighter, more compact devices, while in need of faster and more complex units than ever before. Skilled professionals are required to develop boards that can support this type of technology and operate in a way that is safe, efficient, and effective. Is this your forte? If you're like most other business, the answer is likely, "no."

Let us do what we do best so you can do what you do best

For smaller companies that lack the advanced equipment and specific "know-how" required to assemble these types of devices, contract manufacturers can help. After years of hard work and experience, these contract manufacturers are able to quickly and efficiently develop, review, and improve design schematics, in addition to assembling highly complex PC boards, conduct board testing, and make repairs. 

When you can count on the fact that a reliable contract manufacturing company is shoulderingpc board service this burden for you, you are freed up to focus on what you enjoy most and excel at. With your new ability to focus all of your attention on creating products to fulfill the market demand and introducing your devices to the world, you'll be able to stay ahead of the competition. And with expertly assembled and manufactured technology, you'll impress your customer base and grow your business.

In other words, by letting us handle the manufacturing processes that we are so familiar with, you can put all of your energy and resources into doing what you do and love best. Everyone wins.

It's time for you to shine

Trustworthy contract manufacturers like Zentech are in the business of helping you to look good. We're more than happy to do the less glamorous "behind-the-scenes" work of assembling, testing, troubleshooting, and repair PC boards so that you can provide your customers with the highest quality product possible. We want to help turn your ideas into a reality and bring faster, better, safer technology to the masses. When we choose to partner together, we can take pride in our involvement in the advancement of technology and electronics, while giving you the opportunity to shine.

It's time to stop standing on your own and struggling to remain competitive. With the help of contract manufacturers, you can rise to the top. 

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: Contract Electronic Assembly, contact manufacturers, assembly solutions

5 Things An Electronics Manufacturing Service Can Do For You

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Wed, Mar 12, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

Whenever a year comes to an end, it's a time for business owners to pause and reflect on whatpcb repair services has, and what has not, been working for their companies throughout the course of the past 12 months. For many small to mid-sized electronics businesses, though, it may be easy to pinpoint problems, but not as easy to find solutions. You may be aware that your equipment is out-dated or that you're spending too much on supplies and warranty replacements, but you're not sure where the answer lays. Fortunately, a stellar electronics manufacturing service can provide you with all of the help that you've been looking for. With the new year now upon us, there's no better time than now to partner with a reliable contract manufacturer. Here's a look at 5 key things that an electronics manufacturing service can do for you.

1. Improve the efficiency of board designs

Are your PC boards being designed as efficiently as they can possibly be? Although your designers and engineers may be experienced in the industry, there are instances in which being too close to one's work can actually hinder their ability to spot flaws. Bringing in a new set of eyes that are specifically trained to look for ways to improve on new and existing designs can make a huge difference. By cutting down on the amount of system components requires, you can save money. You may also discover ways to allow your boards to operate faster, more efficiently, and more effectively.

2. Streamline your production processes

The actual production process can be tricky for smaller electronics companies. Without the most advanced machinery, you could become bogged down with larger orders that simply take too long to manufacture. Older equipment can also yield costly errors that require a great deal of time and effort to correct. And without automation, many of your processes could require too much time and man power. By working with an electronics manufacturing service, you can take advantage of the latest equipment so that you can produce your boards faster, without investing the capitol in the actual machinery. 

3. Connect you with the best suppliers

As a "little fish", you may struggle to build strong relationships with great suppliers - especially if your business is relatively new. An established electronics manufacturing service, on the other hand, will have been in the industry for years, meaning that they will have connections to reliable, honest, American suppliers. Not only will this improve the quality of your boards, but your contract manufacturer will also be able to get better deals, meaning that it can also help to reduce your costs for parts.

4. Grow your client basecontract electronics manufacturing

As a business, it is your goal to continuously grow your client base by maintaining current customers while gaining new ones. Unless you are able to keep up with consumer demand and produce high quality boards, though, this can prove to be impossible. A contract manufacturer can help to shoulder the burden of manufacturing, ensuring that your products are developed on schedule, without ever sacrificing quality. This will help you to be able to produce more boards, allowing to you keep orders coming in from your present clients while still being able to take on new work.

5. Cut back your costs

We've already discussed how working with an electronics manufacturing service can help to reduce your costs for parts, but a great third-party manufacturer can also help you to cut back on your warranty replacement costs. In the event that something goes wrong with a board, many smaller companies don't have the resources to repair the issue. This means throwing away money on a replacement. To save money, allow a contract manufacturer to troubleshoot for the problem and repair it quickly and affordably.

Make 2014 your best year yet. By partnering with a contract electronics manufacturing service, you can accomplish your goals. 

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Topics: contract electronic manufacturing, Contract Electronic Assembly, electronics manufacturing service

8 Things to Look for in an Electronics Manufacturing Service

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Wed, Feb 12, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

Are you looking for a superior electronics manufacturing service to contract with in the new year?Contract Electronic Assembly If so, you're probably already well aware that there are numerous businesses that offer design and manufacturing services for you to choose from. Being able to differentiate between the best manufacturers and those that are sub-par, though, can initially seem tricky. If you're not exactly sure what it is that you should be looking for, you may not even know where to begin in narrowing down your options. In order to help you make the best and most educated decision possible, we've put together these eight factors that you should insist upon before hiring an electronics manufacturing service.    

1. Industry experience   First and foremost, it is always in your best interest to hire a contract manufacturing company that has an extensive history in the electronics industry. Those businesses that are well-established can be counted upon to provide high quality work, and will take pride in each board that they design and produce. Don't hesitate to ask your prospective manufacturer about how long they have been in business, and what their criteria is for hiring employees.  

2. Design capabilities   In addition to providing customers with an electronics manufacturing service, your outsource partner should also have the ability to help you throughout your design processes. Whether you are starting completely from scratch, or simply need a fresh set of eyes to review your current specs, the best manufacturing companies can help you to streamline your plans and make them as efficient and effective as possible.  

3. Advanced technologies   What type of tools, machinery, and equipment does your prospective electronics manufacturing service utilize? It's in your best interest to choose to give your business to a company that takes advantage of all of the latest technologies to ensure that your products can be developed in such a way that they remain highly competitive in the marketplace.  

4. Industry compliance   Never work with a contract manufacturing company that does not adhere to the most current industry standards. In addition to complying with various industry rules and regulations for design and manufacture, your partner company should be willing to comply with your specific standards for production.  

5. Environmentally responsible   The best electronics manufacturing service providers will always take the environment into consideration. Make sure that your prospective manufacturer is Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) compliant and can help you convert any of your board's specific designs to an RoHS compliant plan. Not only will this protect our earth, but it will also improve your image with your customers.   assembly solutions

6. Product testing   Your contract manufacturing service should never be satisfied with simply producing a batch order of PC boards. Testing should always be completed to ensure that each unit produced is up to par, and is highly functional and performs as expected. Testing the products for any design flaws or issues can help you to analyze trends and catch major production errors without causing you to waste an excessive amount of time or money.  

7. Supply chain management   Not all supply chain solutions will work for all electronics companies. Because of this, your contract manufacturer should have sourcing agreements for components and commodities from all around the globe, and be willing to meet your needs pertaining to contract requirements, preferred vendors, sourcing restrictions, etc.   

8. Fulfillment Services   It's never a good idea to choose an electronics manufacturing service that does not take care of your needs post-production. A great company will offer fulfillment services including troubleshooting any faulty PC boards and making the necessary repairs before returning them from their depot. In the end, this will save you a lot of time and money on labor or on warranty replacement units.    

Get the very most out of your electronics manufacturing service in 2014. By insisting on this set of criteria, you can easily pick out the best from the rest.

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Topics: contract electronic manufacturing, Contract Electronic Assembly, electronics manufacturing service

Contract Manufacturers: More Than Meets the Eye

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Wed, Feb 12, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

Contrary to the name, contract manufacturers actually do a lot more than "just manufacturing". pc boardsAlthough contracting with a third party electronics manufacturer is certainly ideal for businesses looking for a partner to shoulder the burden of production, the reaches of a great manufacturing company's services go far beyond that. In fact, those who make the decision to work with contract manufactures can reap a host of benefits. In this post we will explore some of the many services that the best third party electronics manufacturing businesses have to offer.

Design Services

Regardless of whether you are in need of a contract manufacturing company to completely design a board from scratch or to simply review the existing design plans that your team already has in place, you will find exactly what it is that you are looking for. Expert designers and engineers with years of industry experience can make use of the latest and greatest technologies to help you develop the greatest board possible, to give you a competitive edge in the marketplace. When looking for a contract manufacturer, look for a business that offers design services such as:

  • Review of product requirements

  • System design

  • Circuit design

  • Mechanical design

  • Embedded software (firmware)

  • Algorithm development

  • Test strategy

  • Documentation creation and management

  • Sustaining engineering

Your contractor should be able to utilize these services to help you to customize a solution that will fit your program's specific requirements.

Design Re-Working  

There may be times when your board design works "well enough", but isn't performing up to the standard that you had hoped for. Perhaps it is not operating as quickly as you would like, or is not as efficient or effective as that of your competition. In these situations, contract manufacturers can step in, assess your design, and help you to find ways to re-work it in such a way that you achieve your desired results. This may also involve scaling down the amount of parts and components that are required for a particular board, which may not only improve performance, but can also significantly reduce your costs.  

Supply Connections  pcb assembling

After spending years in the electronics industry, contract manufacturers have often established solid and long-lasting relationships with various suppliers. This can work to the benefit of electronics companies in several ways. First, you will be able to enjoy the peace of mind that the components that you utilize for your PC boards will be of the highest quality. This means that your products will meet industry standards, and will fully satisfy your clients. Secondly, you will get better deals on the parts that you order. Finally, you may find that you are connected with system components more quickly than ever before, speeding up production.  


A reputable contract manufacturer will always have processes in place that will enable them to properly test your boards for operability, functionality, and efficiency. This will prevent a faulty batch from being shipped out to a customer and giving your business a bad reputation. It will also cut back on the costs of recalling or re-producing an entire defective batch.  


Not just any third party manufacturer can produce your PC boards. In order for you to receive a safe and high-quality product, your manufacturing partner must adhere to industry standards, complying with all regulations.  


In most cases, when something goes wrong with a PC board, it can be traced back to a single faulty component. Instead of wasting money on entirely replacing a board, then, contract manufacturers can take the time to troubleshoot for the issue and make the repair in a way that is far more cost-effective. This satisfies customers and helps your business to save a lot of money in the long run.  

Don't limit your idea of contract manufacturers to only production value. By taking advantage of all of the services offered by your outsource partner, you can significantly improve your business and thrive.

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: contract electronic manufacturing, Contract Electronic Assembly, contact manufacturers