Make Your Life Easy - Choose Your CM Carefully
First and foremost your contract manufacturer must be, ITAR registered, ISO registered, and you probably would also want them to be UL recognized.
- Being ITAR registered means, that your contract manufacturer knows all the ITAR requirements and is abiding by them.
- ISO consists of a quality management principles that apply to a wide range of industries. ISO-9001 for instance is a base line for many companies. Some molders of medical devices choose to go with ISO-13485 since it is a requirement within the medical community and has many redundancies with ISO-9001.
- Finally UL Recognized, an additional standards category made particularly for components.
Optimize your designs for manufacturability. Many designers are just that, designers, an important step in the chain. They may not have the depth of production experience to be designing for manufacturability, or the training in the Scientific Injection Molding process to truly optimize your production process. Your chosen contract manufacturer should bring that to the table for you.
Your products are too important for you to gamble with an inexperienced supplier to the defense community. When you speak with them ask how long they have been an ITAR registered supplier and how many years have they been working with the defense suppliers.
Does your chosen contract manufacturer have the staff and equipment to handle several steps for you? Can they handle the additional external machining, pad printing, insertion, laser marking or many other steps that may be necessary? Dealing with one supplier minimizes communication errors, saves time and lessens overall aggravation on a complex project.
When you are choosing a contract manufacturer find out what level of commitment, how many people, what kind of experience does their personnel have with both quality and regulatory requirements. Do they have a separate department to manage the regulatory requirements around your part or assembly?