Need a Merry-Go-Round or an Airport Runway Electronic Assembler?

Posted by Dani Fulks on Fri, Dec 20, 2013 @ 10:12 AM

Finding a reliable contract electronic assembler that is qualified to handle your printed circuit board jobs can be a challenge for any business, but when your operation is small or mid-sized, it can feel downright impossible. In order for you to keep up with your production demands, to meet consumer needs and make a profit, you need your PCBs manufactured and returned to you in a timely manner. Unfortunately, if your batch sizes aren't large, you may find that your jobs just don't take priority. But why is this? Why should your orders go on the back burner simply because of their size? Your small jobs matter to you just as much as your high volume work does, but to a high-speed/high-volume CM, this isn’t the case. Because of this, your smaller PCB jobs may be treated as a hassle at best, and an annoyance at worst.

The good news is that there's a solution to this problem. What you need is a partnership with a contract electronic assembler that specifically puts its focus on small batch orders so that you can stay as productive and efficient in your processes as possible. By taking a few moments to understand the difference between a large electronic assembler and one that favors the "smaller batch", you'll see how partnering with a company that is the perfect match for your needs will significantly improve your level of success.

Should You be on an Airport Runway or a Merry-Go-Round?

To receive the best service possible from your contract electronic assembler, it helps to acknowledge that the batch size of your jobs can make a big difference to your assembler’s capacity and profitability. Despite the fact that your PCB jobs are very important to you, a small batch can really disrupt the flow of a larger scale, high-speed operation. Not only are smaller jobs less likely to generate the profit that the manufacturer would like, but they can also slow down production and reduce efficiency, eating up valuable time.

Consider that small, private aircraft don't utilize the same runways as the big 747’s do. Although the smaller plane is important for the function it serves, it simply isn't practical or appropriate to hold up a long line of commercial flights to accommodate the little airplane with its few passengers. So the smaller aircraft has to wait at the back of the line for a break in the 747 traffic or move to a separate runway altogether. 

If it feels like you keep getting left behind as major "airliners" pass you by, it might be time to re-consider your options. Imagine a merry-go-round instead. A merry-go-round repeats the same circular ride over and over again, stopping at regular intervals to let riders on and off. With its constant changeover in passengers, there's almost always a free seat for you to jump on. This is what you can expect with a small batch electronic assembler. Each small job is handled smoothly and efficiently without slowing down the flow of jobs or requiring a cost penalty. Everyone on the ride is in the same position, so each receives the same rapid service and attention.

Don't let your small aircraft be run over by a commercial airliner on the runway. By moving your small batches to the far more flexible merry-go-round, you can have all of your PCB circuit board needs met in a timely and cost effective way, and continue to focus on what's most important - growing your business. 

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RBB welcomed Dani in 2010 as Materials Specialist. In 2011 she joined the Sales Team where she helps develop pricing quotes and manages related project information for customers. In her free time, Dani enjoys being a performing singer/songwriter. 

Topics: Small Batch Electronics, Circuit Board & Assembly & Manufacturing, Contract Manufacturing, Original Equipment Manufacturing