Before going into the depth of on-demand manufacturing, let us have a look into the conventional manufacturing process adopted by various businesses and industries. In the traditional manufacturing process, usually, email and phone conversations are predominant since most of the manufacturing systems are situated overseas with lots of minimum orders and lag times. Basically, an assembly line is incorporated in conventional manufacturing processes which helps in executing mass manufacturing orders (Part quantities ranging in lakhs). These parts are further stored in different facilities prior to the shipping. This incurs high inventory cost.
On-demand manufacturing, on the other hand, takes customer demands in the form of a data and instantly makes attempts to manufacture and assemble the desired products for the clients. Starting from the initial period of conceptualizing the business model, to the final product delivery to varied customers, on-demand manufacturing makes the whole manufacturing process suitable for the developers and the customers. One can have access to instant quotes, manage the projects effectively, and keep a track of the inventory from any corner of the world, using any type of web browser.
Advanced manufacturing technologies like 3D Printing, laser cutting etc. have vastly aided the success of on-demand manufacturing processes. This can be well explained from the situation where a customer in need of certain product can place the order instantly and thus, a template or sample can be generated according to the specifications using various technologies such as 3D printing, laser cutting etc. This can further help in generating a bulk of the specific products at any time of the day, thus making the supply chain network successful and efficient.
On-demand manufacturing can be beneficial in many ways:
Access to immediate quotes and budget-friendly model generation
All the innovative designers, now, do not need to worry about getting instant quotes. You just have to upload your design files along with the bill of materials. In addition to this, you can get a real-time assessment of value of the products thus, letting you analyse the capital to be spent. These online tools give you a balanced estimation of the parts and manufacturing expenditure to be incurred. Chizel has developed one such online tool called COCO which gives instant quotations and order timelines for your part orders.
Generation of wide variety of products
Unlike the traditional way of generating products, on-demand manufacturing lets you produce varied type of products from widely available raw materials, instantly. Thus, one can easily achieve hastened manufacturing process, and can easily avoid the shortage of products by coping with the market demand.
Management of the sources and parts of the model
Since a prototype and appropriate tools for the product to be generated are already available, keeping a track of the orders, management of the inventory has been quite easy and effective. All these features can be effortlessly accessed using various online applications available.
No need for stocking any material
All the parts generated from on-demand manufacturing avoid the necessity of hoarding pre-stocked materials. Also, there is additional advantage of not holding up an inventory. As a result, there’s no capital expense incurred during the same.
Full time service
Once you have placed an order for the on-demand manufacturing of a product, you can sit back and relax because the on-demand manufacturers are going to do the rest of the work for you! Right from the moment one places the order, these manufacturing companies act as your support system in ensuring a sound product right from the production station to your doorstep. The production costs, delivery costs, time utilized, and other expense costs can be saved in a major amount.
Less setup features
Since on-demand manufacturing achieves the product requirements using a simple design file which is uploaded to the software and by making use of available raw materials, the lead time to set up these features is comparatively lesser than the traditional ways of manufacturing parts.
We can surely say that both the manufacturers and customers can be always in the advantage. The distance between a generator and various manufacturing units doesn’t matter because all the operations are carried out via a common online server which ensures transparency and efficiency of the manufacturing processes adopted for producing parts.