Improving Reliability in Electronics Manufacturing
MC Assembly has built its business on manufacturing electronics and providing services that are a perfect fit for the customers it serves. That includes improving reliability in electronics manufacturing processes. Tailoring its manufacturing capabilities and processes to fit the needs of its customers. All which has helped the company grow to generate more than $200 million in sales annually.
But if the old adage is to be believed, then all good things do in fact take time, even in the fast-pace, high-tech world of electronics manufacturing.
That’s where the real value in MC Assembly lies – adapting and optimizing product life cycles for their clients. MC Assembly is acutely aware of the effects that time and future innovation can have on technology.
Getting Granular About Electronics Manufacturing
Take the company’s New Product Introduction (NPI) process for example. Jose Sierra, vice president of quality and engineering, knows that executing a reliable new product introduction for a customer needs to begin, well, at the beginning.
“If you look at some new product introduction processes, they look at a product as a general platform,” Sierra said. “We take the process to a granular level to develop it.”
That means creating a process that adapts and morphs to fit every unique and individual products current requirements and specifications.
The NPI process MC Assembly has in place is robust, repeatable and reliable; whether launching one new product or one hundred products. This ensures the highest probability of successful first article launches for MC’s clients. In other words, it allows the company to understand the requirements and to look at it on an assembly-by-assembly basis. It helps them ensure that they’re deploying a process to meet all those design and performance requirements. Whether that’s implementing tooling, designing a new fixture, putting the proper process routing together and iteratively getting the product build steps completed to the product needs, MC Assembly’s NPI process is an industry high water mark.
Designing a Better Board Another area where the MC Assembly team shines is in working collaboratively with the customer’s design team to ensure that each product produced will work reliably well into the future.
“Strength and reliability can be gained from design changes,” said Andy Nunenkamp. “The manufacturing cost and the cycle time are optimized from collaboration.”
Being a part of the design phase makes this sort of collaboration return large rewards through the product’s life cycle. It gives MC Assembly’s manufacturing team the opportunity to give constructive feedback that ultimately impacts the design in a positive way.
“Both our customers and MC Assembly benefit significantly from a partner we can collaborate with through a design for manufacturability (DFM) process where they will actually make changes to create a product that can be manufactured in volumes without rework or errors,” Nunenkamp said.
Performing a BOM Scrub Then there are the raw material components that go into creating those PCBAs. The last thing any customer wants is a board that will become outdated due to obsolete components, before its usable life has expired.
MC Assembly solves that problem by performing a comprehensive bill of materials (BOM) scrub to ensure that all parts being utilized are within acceptable life cycle / supply tolerances. These BOM scrubs, if done early enough in the design process, can help customers see areas where they have exposure in their initial component selections, with some time to take MC’s cross reference suggestions, if there are any. They also offer a level of transparency that many electronics manufacturing services providers don’t’ offer.
Jake Kulp, vice president of new business development, said MC Assembly recommends that new clients take advantage of the technology, engineering services and tools that his company’s engineers have at their disposal.
“Take RF water meters for example,” Kulp said. “They’re buried underground and they have to work, regardless of where they have been deployed, Arizona or Illinois. You don’t want to dig up all of Miami in five years’ time because you have a reliability issue.”
MC Assembly has made a business decision to create value with an OEM selecting them as a manufacturing partner by offering these engineering optimization services free of charge, as well as other services such a design for test (DFT) and design for assembly (DFA) if they are building the whole box build.