Whether you’re working with a company or you’re a solo entrepreneur, there are times when product design and development simply takes up more resources than you have available. Maybe you’ve got a timeline that you aren’t able to meet; maybe you don’t have all the expertise that the development process will require.
That’s why product design, development, and manufacturing firms, like Pivot, exist. We work with companies and individuals to help them design, develop, prototype, manufacture, and even market and sell their new products.
But what’s it really like working with a product design firm? While it may vary somewhat from firm to firm, here’s a glimpse at the general process.
Getting to know your product
This is the first step any product design firm will take when working with a new client. At Pivot, we offer free consultations for potential clients, during which we outline our services and get an idea of the kind of help you need.
When a client hires us, they have access to our experienced team of designers and product developers. One thing that sets Pivot apart is that we’re able to jump in at any point during the development process. We’ve worked with clients who have nothing but an idea, as well as those who want to update or refine an existing product – as well as stage in between.
Once we’ve worked with you to learn about your idea or product, we put our engineers and product designers to work.
Developing your product
The first step in creating a manufacturable, viable product is to take the vision for the product and translate it into technical specifications. Depending on what type of product it is – industrial, electrical, mechanical, or software – a specific team of engineers will work on designing a successful blueprint.
At Pivot, if we’re doing something like a cost reduction for an existing product, we’ll look at different materials, manufacturing processes, and other factors that can be implemented to help bring those costs down.
Regardless of what stage of development your product is in, however, you can be assured that our engineers will always work to create the most cost-effective designs possible.
Once we’ve created a viable design that our client is happy with, we can move into the prototyping phase. This is one of the most exciting stages of product development, as it’s the first time you get to see your idea in a tangible, 3D format.
Since there have been so many advances in software and 3D printing over the past several years, prototyping can be done extremely rapidly. (That’s why we have the term “rapid prototyping.”) Options include 3D printed (rapid) prototypes – as well as prototypes made to be exactly the same as the finished product would be. The former are less expensive, and the latter more so. You can read more about the prototyping process in our free ebook, “Product Prototyping: Getting It Right the First Time.”
Manufacturing your product
Once we’ve made a good working prototype, it’s time to move to the manufacturing stage. Thanks to Pivot’s global manufacturing resources, we can offer both the ease of working with a domestic company, and the cost savings of international sourcing.
We’ll work with our clients to ensure we’re using the best possible materials while staying within a realistic budget. Pivot can handle every aspect of the manufacturing process, including supply chain management, so clients don’t have to deal with managing global resources unless they want to.
Developing your business
Another important, yet often overlooked aspect of creating a successful product is creating a successful business to market that product. Even if you’ve already got an established company that will sell the product, Pivot can help with market research, strategic planning, and product launch planning.
Of course, we can do all these things for entrepreneurs who are building a company from the ground up, too. In addition, we’re versed in regulatory compliance for a huge variety of products and industries.
Working with an outside design firm can save both companies and entrepreneurs a great deal of time, money, and headaches. To learn more about how Pivot can help you, check out our Services page.