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  5. Add Value to Your Company with New Product Designs

Add Value to Your Company with New Product Designs

Identify. Investigate. Incorporate.

New product design can be a valuable time for a business. It also needs to be a strategic planning time, where many different elements need to be considered.

Ron Barnett, Product Development Manager at Interpower, shares some beginning steps relating to an electrical or electronic new product design, along with what should be accounted for early on by the designer.

Identify

“One of the first steps is to identify the market your product is destined for,” Barnett said. This means determining the specific type of component that will be the focus of the product design. Keep in mind that part of the identification process with this new product is that is needs to be of value to customers. Focus on what will delight them. Extensive research will assist with determining if this new idea merits further consideration.

Investigate

“Whether exporting globally or domestically, with an electrical and electronic product, you will need to investigate the safety standards and test requirements that your product will be required to meet,” Barnett said.

It is important to determine which national and/or international standards apply to the specific product design. “Particular clauses in a standard may require special design considerations,” he explained. For example, there may be a materials requirement—according to some test agencies, some plastics are required to be made with specific material properties. There may also be component dimensions and tolerances specifically defined in a standard in which the component design is not allowed to deviate from.

“Depending on the scope of the design and expertise needed, an in-country consultant may be required to navigate through a standard’s documentation,” Barnett added.

Incorporate

When ready to start actually designing the product, incorporate the knowledge learned through the research.

“If internal testing resources are available, develop a preliminary test plan to perform verification testing throughout the design process,” he explained. “These tests should be similar to what the test agency will perform.”

Testing the product throughout the process can help to give a competitive advantage and may help to reduce potentially costly mistakes. “The intended end use and destination of the product needs to be considered. The designer needs to keep in mind which safety standards need to be met for the market and country. It is important that the designer consider these requirements early in the design process through verification testing,” he added.

Various testing agencies are located throughout the world. Since each one has its own requirements, it is essential to have knowledge of what is required by the agency that will be used.

Objectives

A successful new product design can be a valuable asset to your company. For a continued positive impact, consider these objectives to incorporate throughout your design process.

  1. Uphold the highest quality of ethics with professionalism and teamwork.
  2. Ensure compliance with product safety agencies and customer requirements.
  3. Incorporate product guidelines to meet market demands.
  4. Ensure control of product specifications.
  5. Manage and continually improve the product development process.
  6. Utilize and coordinate external engineering resources to meet product design needs.

Additional Resources

Interpower offers free technical support. For further assistance, please see Interpower’s contact information below.

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