Time to Market: Security is Key

New product introduction (NPI) is on the rise. With crisis comes innovation and the COVID-19 pandemic is no different, as hundreds of new and innovative products are being developed and rushed to the marketplace.

There are all kinds of new and improved medical devices such as respirators, ventilators, and vaccine storage; expedited shipping on temperature monitors, sanitizers, and purifiers; and quick and accurate test and numerous other medical devices. There are also other new products being rushed to the market, everything from automatic door openers to office occupancy monitoring, and much more.

This tsunami of new products coming to market also includes innovations and inventions in the automotive marketplace, from electric and autonomous vehicles to battery chargers that are easier to use and longer lasting than anything currently on the market.

Adding to this is the fact that people have been locked down for well over a year, giving them creative time like they have never had in their lives. Artists are finding new ways to create art; singers are putting out new albums, and inventors are inventing like crazy.

Of course, they all want to get their creations and inventions to the marketplace as rapidly and as easily as possible.

There has never been a higher demand for faster time to market than right now. Those of us working in this space must get ready for a perfect storm of highly competitive companies wanting to get their products to market first.

If you’re in this end of the marketplace, you had better be ready for it. If you’re not, sharpen your pencils because every company in electronics is going to be looking for you to take their products to market—quickly, efficiently, and productively.

But one aspect of NPI QTA that we probably don’t talk enough about is confidentiality. In the past, we have been judged by three “legs” of NPI QTA: delivery, quality and price. Now, I propose we add confidentiality as the fourth leg, and also the one growing in importance.

With so much innovation, many ideas and concepts are likely to get stolen, or I should say “seemingly stolen.” By this, I mean that when a lot of companies are working on the same kinds of products at the same time there is bound to be some cross-pollination of ideas that could lead to lawsuits or at least severe misunderstandings. And of course, much of the time we are all working on products with either no patents yet, or best-case, patent pending.

This means that our customers are very sensitive about who is actually building their products and whether they are truly trustworthy.

For these reasons, we must develop privacy and security systems in our processes that will alleviate our customers’ fears of patent infringement of stealing of their new product ideas. We are all going to have to tighten our security systems to make sure that no product information in any way leaves our companies.

It is a known fact that often we will simultaneously be building two or sometimes three competing companies’ products, and we must make sure that these products lines never cross in any way. We also must make darn sure that we don’t inadvertently expose one company’s product or product secrets to one of their competitors.

So far, this has never posed that great a problem, but I see that it may change. We are seeing a drastic rise in customer concern for having their new products stolen by a competitor. I believe this concern will continue to rise in the next two years, at least.

Adding to this concern is the rise of the “anybody but China” (ABC) thinking when it comes to American OEMs losing their faith and trust in Chinese companies. There is currently a move to find suppliers with non-Chinese companies in Southeast Asia; it is something we need to address immediately.

While for years it was perfectly acceptable for Americans to buy components and other products directly from China, the trust in China (for whatever reason) is waning to the point where OEMs no longer want to deal with China. This is creating havoc with the supply chain as we’ve known it for the past 20 years.

Part of this concern is, of course, to produce the intellectual property (IP) that is being develop here by American OEMs. Once again, it is a matter of product security and patent infringement.

We now must demonstrate our trustworthiness when it comes to security and the protection from IP theft to our customers. We are going to have to make them very comfortable that they can trust us with their products of the future.

Imran Valiani is an account manager at Rush PCB. He can be reached at imran@rushpcb.com. 

Back

2021

Time to Market: Security is Key

05-27-2021

The tsunami of products coming to market means that confidentiality and security is more important than ever. But are they getting the attention they need?

View Story

Time to Market: Faster Than Ever

05-06-2021

Now more than ever, speed is more important than anything else. When we talk to our customers, especially the ones who are working on new and innovative products (and almost all of them are), there is a growing concern that their suppliers are not going to be able to keep up with their need for speed.

View Story

Time to Market: Secrets to Super Customer Service

03-25-2021

A recent survey of a few companies asked what was the most important to them. The survey not only focused on what was offered by their customers today, but what they wanted if they could have anything they wanted in terms of service from the suppliers. It was a very interesting, and surprising, exercise.

View Story

Time to Market: Customer Service is Still the Key

02-18-2021

Times have changed and fast time to market is not an excuse to skimp on quality, technology or customer service. In fact, great customer service is more important than it has ever been, especially when it comes to quick turn-around orders.

View Story

Time to Market: Everything Changes—Are You Ready?

01-21-2021

Imran Valiani is always on the lookout for ways to cut time to market. Over the years this has become his personal passion. When he stumbled on a way to shorten the quoting process, Valiani left no stone unturned.

View Story
Back

2020

Time to Market: Ensuring Your Suppliers Are There for You

12-10-2020

The best vendors are always there for you and are willing to work 365/24/7. Your company’s most valuable assets are your products, and you're entrusting them to another company. Here, Imran Valiani shares the eight most critical questions you have to ask about your supplier.

View Story

Time to Market: You Get What You Pay For

11-25-2020

There is an old saying that goes, “You get what you pay for.” This is especially true when it comes to the electronics manufacturing industry. What is a great product, what is a great PCB, and what is extraordinary service? Imran Valiani details eight characteristics of a great PCB supplier.

View Story

Time to Market: How Fast Do You Really Need It?

10-29-2020

There is no doubt that in this fast-paced world of innovation and time to market, speed is one of the most important aspects of making your products and company successful. Imran Valiani shares four actions that can be taken pre-manufacturing to cut down the critical need for speed at the manufacturing level.

View Story

Time to Market: 12 Characteristics of NPI Suppliers

09-24-2020

When trying to get a new product to market, time can be the most important factor when it comes to its future success or failure. Imran Valiani details 12 characteristics you should look for when choosing and developing a long-term working relationship with that right new product introduction (NPI) supplier.

View Story

Time to Market: 8 Ways to Know Your Customer Better

08-20-2020

Now is the time to go the extra mile in getting to know your customers, what they need, and how to help them solve their problems and challenges. Imran Valiani shares eight ways to know your customer better.

View Story

Time to Market: It’s Not All About Money

07-30-2020

When you consider the true value of getting your product built swiftly enough to make your required date, you come to realize that it’s not all about the money. After all of the planning, scheduling, and marketing you’ve done, Imran Valiani explains what could happen if you don’t get your product on time.

View Story

Time to Market: It’s Crunch Time!

06-25-2020

After sharing a crunch-time scenario, Imran Valiani emphasizes the importance of solid communication on getting to market on time—especially if you're not using a one-stop-shop for design, fabrication, and assembly.

View Story

Time to Market: 10 Guidelines for NPI Projects

05-21-2020

With everything going on right now, people are looking for solutions—especially fast solutions. Imran Valiani shares 10 guidelines for working with your NPI supplier to make sure that you get your new, innovative, and in some cases, life-saving products to market quickly and efficiently.

View Story

Time to Market: Time to Market Now More Critical Than Ever

04-23-2020

As inventors come up with new devices and equipment that can directly save lives when they are placed in the hands of the medical professionals who are treating COVID-19 patients, it is up to the PCB and PCBA industry to support those companies. Imran Valiani provides five actions to help customers get to market with their new products as rapidly as possible.

View Story

Time to Market: Handling the Precarious Global Supply Web

03-26-2020

The rush is on. As the world changes moment by moment, more and more companies are going to need to have their new product lines developed faster than ever. As the global supply web shuts down—or at least gets closed off in some areas of the world—companies, especially OEMs, are having to scramble to find alternate solutions for building their products. However, Imran Valiani explains how there is a way to countermand these challenges: using trusted sources.

View Story
Back

2019

Time to Market: The Complete Solution—Fabrication and Assembly in Five Days

12-05-2019

The future is here. More and more companies are turning to the complete synergistic solution, seeking companies who can provide PCB fabrication and assembly in just a few days, some in as little as five days. Imran Valiani shares five items to consider when choosing a total concept supplier.

View Story

Time to Market: Partnership Is a Two-way Street

11-21-2019

The best way—and really the only way—to get the most from both your PCB vendors and others is to treat them as an extended part of your company. Bring them into the family, so to speak. And the better you treat your vendors, the better they will perform. I know that’s not the most complicated thing to say, but it is often not an easy thing to do. You have to intentionally choose companies to partner with as vendors, and then intentionally work to create a bond of trust with them consistently throughout the relationship.

View Story

Time to Market: The Importance of Timely NPI

10-09-2019

In this new column from Imran Valiani plans to address ways to get products to market as quickly as possible.

View Story
Copyright © 2021 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.