Manufacturing tends to be one of the most extensive and most expensive departments of many kinds of businesses. To be able to make products requires tools and equipment, materials, warehousing space and sometimes even vehicles, licenses and more. It’s challenging to get right, and often involves a lot of cost, time and the right people to set up a plant.
Outsourcing vs in house
Setting up a manufacturing plant is always going to be a massive task, regardless of what your business does. You need to source all the correct machines and vehicles, find a suitable location; you need to hire the right staff to run and maintain everything. Things can and will break down, machines, for example, can wear out and parts can go wrong. However, manufacturing products yourself puts you in control. There are advantages and drawbacks to outsourcing any department of your business, but one of the drawbacks is that the work you submit is then out of your hands. You have to put trust in another company and rely on them to do the tasks for you, to a standard you’re happy with. Another reason manufacturing yourself can be a good idea in business is because it will save you money in the long run. While there are substantial upfront costs to consider in most cases, once everything is all up and running you will usually save money compared with outsourcing to another company.
What do you sell?
Whether or not your business is able to manufacture its own products will largely depend on what it is you want to make. Just about everything you need to make products from machines to materials will be expensive, but for some companies, it will be easier than others. Take textiles, for example. Investing in a small workshop, with perhaps some good quality sewing machines would be more doable than needing, say, machines for electronics. If you’re selling wood products, saws and lathes again are going to be less expensive that really high tech equipment. Consider the equipment and materials you’ll need to use, from plastic to polyurethane finishes and work out if buying and running the machines you need will be doable for you.
What health and safety implications are there?
Health and safety is a huge consideration when it comes to manufacturing your own products. There are risks in any workplace, but in factories and plants there are additional risks that you don’t get in other areas of work. Heavy machinery, vehicles, power tools, chemicals, heat, working at heights and more can all cause injury, illness or death. On top of this, you also have the general risks you get in any workplace like slips, trips and falls. Health and safety-wise, it can add up to a lot of potential problems. Always follow all health and safety laws to the letter, otherwise, employees could be injured as a result. Lawsuits being brought against you could mean your venture is over before it even really got started.