Top 3 Reasons to Outsource your Hardware Design
Let’s face it, unless you’re a big company with substantial resources, there are many benefits to outsource your hardware design. Here, we outline the top 3 benefits to your business when you work with a Hardware Design partner.
1. Access to Skilled Experts
The solution you’re tackling may require some specialized skillsets. In IoT, some of the harder-to-find skillsets include: RF/Wireless, Antenna, Embedded Firmware, Audio and DSP. Unfortunately, the available workforce isn’t typically full of experts in these areas so they can be hard to recruit.
If you are able to find skilled specialists, they are likely expensive to hire and onboard as an employee. Recruiting true technical experts is the same process as recruiting C-level employees – they are harder to find and compensation structures can be complex. The ongoing work needs to be compelling enough to pique their interest!
When you outsource your design, you gain access to expertise that often isn’t accessible to hire. Sometimes the hourly rates these experts command can seem high, but take time to consider their expertise and efficiency. Quite often experts can do complex work quickly and, even at the higher rates, it’s more cost effective and better for your project schedule to use the experts.
2. The Freedom of Project-based Work
When you’re building a physical product, the hardware design is a critical piece of the overall solution that’s often on the critical path early on in the project. However, unless you’re building several products each year, there is often not enough work to keep a team of Engineers busy year-round. The carrying costs of a technical team are high if they’re not being fully utilized.
For startups and young businesses especially, gaining initial traction and establishing a successful revenue base and business model takes time, even with the best solutions. By outsourcing your designs, you can control your costs and focus your financial resources on developing and growing the business.
A good Design Partner can also help you take your roadmap and quantify the technical challenges, budget and timeline to help you move forward with your business planning.
Collaborations between your internal team for requirements, resources and vision combined with your Design Partner can create wonderful synergies while minimizing budgetary and technical risk.
3. Managing Relationships and Staying Current
Building hardware is all about managing relationships. Relationships with:
Contract Manufacturers; from rapid prototyping to mass manufacture
Component Suppliers; including chips, sensors, batteries and passives
Test & Measurement Labs; including certification bodies and equipment vendors
Managing these relationships shouldn’t be treated as a transactional relationship where you only engage when need something. Instead, they should be approached as long-term relationships. Often if your in-house design team is focused on one particular project at a time, they can become disconnected from the relationships they need to rely on when the time comes to execute.
When you outsource your design, you are tapping into the network that your Design Partner maintains. Doing varied project work constantly, your Partner should always have their finger on the pulse of their network. They know what’s new and they’re constantly collaborating with various vendors on projects.
Outsourcing is a fantastic way to stay current with relationships and have your designs be using the best elements for a comprehensive solution.
At a glance, there’s a stigma around outsourcing – it’s often thought of as expensive and ineffective. But with the right partner, it’s a win-win.
Let your team focus on building the business and lean on your design house as a trusted partner to help you execute your vision until you’re ready for a full-time team of your own.
JTDC helps people build tech-enabled solutions into viable businesses. If you’re looking for a reliable Design Partner for your IoT solution, we have a team of world-class experts who have spent their careers building and delivering tech solutions into the market.