Comparing different companies, particularly industrial services, can be a complicated process. All companies may not offer the same additional services over and above the basics, which often means variations in bids and estimates that are hard to compare in a line-by-line analysis.
While not all metal manufacturing companies may offer the same additional services, they should all be able to provide the basic fabrication processes including cutting, sawing, CNC machining, and welding.
The additional services offered by larger shops and facilities tend to include a greater choice in the basics such as choosing between different precision cutting options from lasers to plasma. Other services that may be included in metal manufacturing include punching and forming, prefinishing, finishing, and assembly as well as assistance with design and project development prior to prototyping.
Expertise in the Industry
In addition to the processes offered with each metal manufacturing company, check into the company’s expertise. This is not just about years in business. It also includes the experience of working within any regulations, specifications or standards required.
When manufacturing companies have a solid understanding of these issues, they are able to work with your in-house design team and ensure all prototypes and production runs meet those requirements.
Capacity and Capability
For new parts and components where the market is yet to be determined precisely, having a manufacturing company that will work on a prototype and then small production runs at the initial launch of the product will be important.
Then, as your business gains market share, can the manufacturing company also ramp up production to meet your needs? Ideally, even at the initial stages of the project, look for a manufacturer to partner with that has the full production capacity you see as your final market share rather than your initial production requirements.