By Bill Huseby, President & CEO
While most of us associate manufacturing with Asia, there is actually a fair amount of it happening in the U.S. Manufacturing makes up 11.4% of the U.S. economy’s GDP and added $2.38 trillion to the economy in the last quarter of 2018, according to the National Association of Manufacturers. This occurs despite the fact that most U.S. production companies are considered small businesses, with less than 500 employees. With so many companies producing goods across industries, the U.S. manufacturer sector is very diverse.
Manufacturing companies are split into two categories; those specializing in producing specialty stock or custom projects (the majority of companies) or those providing production services. Companies, including SIGMADESIGN, that provide manufacturing services handle custom work for companies that do not have the resources to produce a product themselves. They offer expertise and capabilities in producing specific parts or custom products as required by their customers.
Even prior to the COVID – 19 pandemic, SIGMADESIGN was adding new manufacturing capabilities to the company’s service offerings. The COVID – 19 environment has made it even more important to offer local manufacturing options as many companies are forced to pivot their business models to stay competitive, or even in business at all, and as many global production processes have been disrupted during the pandemic. Many challenges faced by manufacturers are related to their ability to innovate and do so quickly in order to adapt to this new environment. In order to stay relevant, companies will need:
- Resources to innovate
- Speed of development
- Ability to maintain and grow a talented team
- Access to cross functional capabilities (concept through manufacturing)
- Automation processes for new levels of productivity
Defining Our Niche
Currently, SIGMADESIGN provides a substantial amount of manufacturing work for clients, yet an opportunity exists to grow and improve this part of the business. Defining our niche allows us to take on a wide variety of manufacturing projects while providing better clarity and value to our clients.
In 2020, one of our strategic initiatives focuses a dedicated team to defining efficient manufacturing processes from quoting to executing a customers’ needs. Understanding how we provide manufacturing involved outlining best practices and a systematic process. The team began by defining manufacturing specifically for SIGMADESIGN and developed a decision tree that helps the company delineate projects for manufacturing. At SIGMADESIGN, we believe:
Manufacturing is the continuous and repetitive production of a stable design using cost effective processes and labor.
The team evaluated our ability to quote production projects consistently and accurately. By developing a tool to assess various production scenarios, our customer quotes provide manufacturing estimates that specify cost and time more precisely for the wide variety of products that we fabricate.
As a product development and engineering firm, SIGMADESIGN offers adept abilities in manufacturing high quality, complex products. Our clients benefit from our broad experience with concept through production. This experience provides important structure for manufacturing including material procurement and logistics, tracking, communication, product re-works coordination, testing, and assembly. We offer value for clients with particularly complex manufacturing needs that may require build mixes with various product configurations. This provides our customers the ability to evaluate suppliers, different designs, and different materials.
Additionally, with a highly diverse group of experts, we have experience setting up a variety of production lines. We’re able to rapidly set-up dedicated manufacturing facilities to deliver products with relatively low-medium volume builds. We focus on making a product easier to assemble and stable for high-volume productions. When we think about manufacturing, the USA is definitely an option. SIGMADESIGN has the ability to innovate and produce products quickly in order to help customers adapt in this new environment.
Best to you and stay safe,