On your mark, get set, invest! In an ideal world, finding a custom case manufacturer would be this simple. But if you want to make sure your custom case manufacturer checks all your boxes (which we’re sure you do), there’s a bit of research to do before you arrive at a final decision.
To streamline this evaluation, we’ve organized a list of things to consider about potential custom case manufacturers, highlighting those items that are most critical to the selection process.
How Does Their Team Collaborate with Yours?
While a custom case manufacturer offers unique expertise, your team has expertise to offer too. You know the ins and outs of your product(s), as well as what competitors in your industry are doing — and a custom case manufacturer should use that information to their advantage. Initial conversations around needs, timeline and budget should be paired with subsequent check-ins to assess that products are built to your specifications before mass production takes place.
What Kind of Capabilities Do They Offer?
There are a variety of manufacturing processes that can be used to produce custom cases — and the more options a custom case manufacturer offers, the more likely you are to find a method to suit your technical and budget requirements. Let’s say you’re shipping medical equipment. You could, in theory, use injection molding or rotomolding for this purpose. But if you need the case to have greater impact resistance and you want to save on tooling costs, rotomolding may be the more ideal option.
Then, there’s the question of what branding capabilities are available. In an effort to increase their brand awareness and stand out from the competition, more companies are investing in cases that distinctly align with their unique brand identifiers, from their signature colors to their logo. Finding a custom case manufacturer that has the resources to cater to these needs can also serve as a big selling point.
Do They Embrace or Shy Away from Innovation?
While some manufacturers may have a well-oiled process in place to produce custom cases, this can sometimes translate into a rut of sorts. Manufacturers often stick with the types of projects they are comfortable working on — and when new types of technical challenges arise, they may simply say that the project is outside of their wheelhouse.
That’s why it’s important to work with a custom case manufacturer that not only accepts but embraces new challenges. While this can help you solve existing problems, it is also a good sign of a long-term partnership where the manufacturer can continuously help you innovate in order to meet new business needs. So whether you have an idea for a new device that would integrate with a case or are looking to improve inventory management, you’ll be confident that your custom case manufacturer can help bring your vision to life.
Is Their Business Model Flexible or Rigid?
The partnership you have with a custom case manufacturer should be built directly on your individual needs, not a pre-existing template. Whether you need to ramp up production of your current custom cases or need a stock option to use while a design is created for a new line of cases, it’s critical that your manufacturer can shift gears as needed to best serve your needs.
What’s even more ideal is that this same manufacturer can design your new custom case. Keeping both design and manufacturing under the same roof boosts overall efficiency — as does the use of design-for-manufacturing approach that ensures the concept for a custom case successfully translates into a manufacturable product.
What Do Their Customers Have to Say?
When customers are extremely satisfied with the service they receive from a custom case manufacturer, odds are they’ll want to share their story with others and promote the business. Whether you browse reviews online or connect with other customers you know, the feedback you receive can be a strong indicator of whether the manufacturer is the right fit for you. This can stretch from the quality of the products themselves to the customer service provided.
At Cases By Source, we pride ourselves on the long-term relationships we’ve built with customers — ones that we believe our focus on collaboration, flexibility, innovation and offering comprehensive capabilities has helped support. To learn more about how we can help manufacture (and design) your custom case, schedule a consultation with us.