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The design of your new electronic product is a significant challenge, especially when your development timelines are constrained.

You undoubtedly have certain resources and skills in-house, but are you sure you can secure the development of your product to meet its planned time-to-market?

You want to turn to an electronic design center, but you do not have all the elements to make sure you save time. In this article, we give you the key elements you need to check to accelerate the design of your product while securing its quality and cost despite short deadlines.

🏢 #1 Choose the right electronic design center for the rapid development of your product

You have a list of several providers who have been recommended to you. To make your choice you must take into account:

A. Its multidisciplinary expertise in electronic design

To develop your product, it is important that your design center has the multidisciplinary expertise (system architecture, hardware, software, and mechanics) necessary for the development of your product.

If you need to develop an IoT product, you should also check that it has skills in communication protocols, in the cloud, and in data security. You will also need to know if it is able to take charge of the mechatronic part of your product, that is to say, be able to accompany you in the industrial design of the mechanics and its integration with the electronics. All while projecting into the assembly that will be carried out (Box Build) during production. Has it already worked on similar projects?

You also need to know if it is able to quickly prototype your product: if it is an innovative product, a fast prototyping line will be a major asset to validate functionalities or the use of a new component.

B. Its (demonstrated) expertise in your field of activity

You should also check that the design center has proven experience in your market (automotive, defense, aeronautics, home automation, Industrial IoT, …) and the corresponding certifications.

Do you have a project in the automotive field, is your future design center IAT 16949 certified? Is your product intended to integrate an embedded system for aeronautics? Check that the design center is EN / AS / JISQ 9100 certified.

Its knowledge of projects and constraints related to your market allows it to respond quickly to your request and to make you a proposal that takes it into account and anticipates very upstream the possible risks of your product.

Its experience in your field may also lead it to offer you technological bricks already developed as part of previous projects or a product development policy. This will allow you to eliminate certain stages of development, optimize your budget, and reduce your time to market.

If you have questions about the feasibility or the conditions of realization of your project, the design center must be able to offer you a risk analysis with, if necessary, the realization of a POC to validate your decision to launch.

C. Its ability to help you specify and freeze the specifications of your electronic product

Given its expertise in your field of activity, the design center will be able to help you finalize your specifications or clarify the specifications of your project according to the degree of definition of your need. When the specifications are frozen, you will be asked to validate them jointly with him.

This step will allow you to secure the launch of your product on a solid basis and will prevent you from multiplying specification changes (Engineering Change Request) which are costly. You will save time.

D. The size needed to support the development of your product

Depending on your need, it is important that the design center is able to support the development of your project.

Its structure and its portfolio of skills, the number of engineers and the complementarity of services that ensure the coherence of the project and guard against any new risks will be indicators to take into account to make your choice: quickly mobilizing a team is part of the assets that you will have to consider in order to decide and which will impact the speed of implementation of your project.

It is reassuring to be able to work with an established and perennial design center.

⚡ #2 A solid project methodology: winning strategy to design an electronic product within constrained deadlines

Once the team is mobilized, you will need to verify the control of the project management process of the electronic design center and its ability to deploy it to support you in the development of your product.

A. Its ability to specify and plan the stages of development to meet deadlines

Depending on your need and the maturity of your project, the design center must offer you the methodology adapted to your need:

  • An agile methodology that allows to complete and refine the reflection on the product need and to validate its development step by step. We talk about “sprint”.Advantage: maximum flexibility in project development to quickly test the market.
    Disadvantage: a slightly higher TCO (total cost of ownership)
  • The V-cycle method which secures each stage of development by successive validations of each stage. A POC (proof of concept) can be made to validate a technology, a functionality or a component that have not yet been used in an equivalent project.Advantage: control, cost/delivery visibility and quality assurance
    Disadvantage: a rigorous process that leaves little room for unforeseen modifications
  • If we take the automotive and aeronautical sectors as an example, the APQP (Advanced Product Quality Planning) approach, which is transversal and preventive for the management of new products, will be used to anticipate risks and reduce non-quality costs related to development.
    Advantage: rigorous and controlled product development management
    Disadvantage: a more expensive serviceIn general, the project organization must allow to “de-risk” the development and integration of your electronic product, by identifying the critical points that will have to be validated at each of the stages.
=> The project methodology allows to secure a reliable, flexible and fast design of your product. The teams of the engineering center will advise you to choose the method best suited to your project according to your stakes and your organization in place.


B. Its ability to set up a project team for maximum responsiveness at each stage

To ensure the management of your project, it is preferable that your future partner has a confirmed experience, especially in your field of activity.

Initially, it will define a project team bringing together the required skills, under the leadership of a project manager.

  • Competent and experienced R&D engineers in hardware, software, mechanics, and quality
  • Industrialization engineers will propose test strategies corresponding to the needs for component purchases and product features and they will define the industrial equipment necessary for its production

When the design center is integrated with the EMS (Electronic Manufacturing Services or electronic subcontractor), it is the factory test engineer who proposes this strategy.

  • Development teams close to industrial teams allowing to carry out all the DfX at all stages of the project.
  • Buyers allowing
    > to select the right components from the panel> or to reference new suppliers in order to establish the BOM (bill of materials) of planned components and to check their obsolescence.

When the design center is integrated with the EMS, it benefits from its purchasing power which allows it to obtain the best prices.

Once the development is completed, the project engineer ensures the quality of the deliverables with the production factory and makes available all the design documents, from the BOM to the software firmware.


🤖 #3 Its ability to set up a project team for maximum responsiveness at each stage

To guarantee the QCD (quality, costs, deadlines) of your product, and ensure its robustness, it is essential that the design office assures you of its capabilities to carry out all phases of industrialization. To do this, it must be able to rely on the various services around product design: DfX (Design for Excellence).

DfX: think about the design to be able to purchase the components, produce, test the product in order to guarantee its industrialization and mass production while respecting the target cost and quality objectives.

A. Securing product quality through prototyping and testing (DfT: design for test)

You will also check that the design office has the prototyping and testing capabilities to validate and qualify your product at the different phases of its development.
The objective is for your product to meet the various regulations and certifications sought (IP 67, CEM, etc.). For the automotive sector, prototyping will take place while respecting the product/process maturity levels from the APQP.

B. Sustain the supply of components, anticipate their obsolescence (DfP: design for purchasing)

Selecting suppliers who will be able to deliver the components necessary for your product throughout its life cycle is part of the skills you will seek from an electronic design office to guarantee both the availability and robustness of your product.

C. Optimize finished product costs / (Design to Cost)

To ensure optimal serial cost of your finished product, you will need an industrial partner with strong purchasing capacity giving them access to a large number of suppliers. This purchasing capacity will make it possible to optimize the selection of components and their cost.

Furthermore, the testing strategies and qualification programs that you have chosen will directly impact the overall cost of your product development and its industrialization.

D. Industrialize your product: a crucial step in the development of your product (Design for Manufacturing)

The “industrialization” expertise of your design office will determine the industrial feasibility of your product. This step is decisive in the perspective of mass production.

At this stage, it will be important for you that the design office demonstrates its skills in industrialization and the way in which it will approach it.

It is interesting to check that it can offer you the Design for Manufacturing service: it is a support solution which begins from the design phase of your electronic product, through the prototyping and pre-series phase, up to to the final production of the latter. It makes it possible to target the ideal design as early as possible and to facilitate and make all industrialization stages more reliable before mass production. Result: optimization of production times, quality and reliability of the future product as well as securing the budget for the project.

The ability of the design office to communicate transparently and fluidly with the industrial teams is decisive for the successful start of serial production of the product. It is crucial that all information is properly transmitted to the factory teams: that is the whole point of having a single point of contact who coordinates and synchronizes with all stakeholders.

E. Master the process from start to finish: choose an integrated design center

When moving into series production of a new product, it is not uncommon to notice manufacturing and/or testing problems that could have been anticipated with a solid design/manufacturing partnership that secures the industrialization of the product. This then requires delaying the start of production to choose a new component and carry out a new validation.

To avoid this, there is an alternative: opt for an electronic design office integrated into an EMS..

This solution allows you to:

  • Have a single contact and a unique responsibility
  • Secure the exchange of information between development, purchasing and industrial teams, optimize industrialization and DfX
  • Minimize risks
  • Reduce costs (optimized purchasing capacity)
  • Save time in the overall development of the product, especially thanks to industrialization as close as possible to the design
  • Have a complete and consolidated view of the project (risks, costs, deadlines)

The design center that will convince you is the one that:

  • Has solid and proven technical expertise, a system vision and project management that allows the different expertises to converge,
  • Designs products similar to the one you want to develop or that implements similar technologies in environments equivalent to yours.

By proving its expertise, it will be able to ensure the development of your product from end to end, from design to series production while securing its robustness, reliability – whether it is IoT or embedded electronics.

By choosing an integrated design center, you reduce the time to market: you optimize the DfX and industrialization, you minimize the risks associated with the qualification of your product and improve the date of placing your product on the market. All while respecting the target cost and the desired level of quality.

You have a project: contact our design center