In the last in a series of blog posts exploring how to bring a new product to market, Teddington MD James Henderson looks at how to make your idea a reality. 


Over the last few weeks we’ve looked at various aspects of bringing a product to market – the importance of choosing the right partners, the rules within which we have to work, the need to team up with a genuine expert and the importance of agreeing a set development process. Now we’re ready to build our product.

If we look back at our original business case it’s more than likely to have had a healthy dose of optimism. The development process aleways takes longer than palnned and the numbers rarely hit the assumed targets.

So, when planning your very first production run there are two key things to consider. First, do not over-order. Second, do not over-order.

This is why:

  • Filling the supply chain is a significant task. It might sound easy. But you will be setting expectations with suppliers before you actually know if they can be fulfilled. This is the fastest way to annoy a contact and you will rapidly find yourself at the bottom of the priority list. A supply chain works far better (and is often cheaper) with lower volume but regular orders. Rather than a boom and bust procurement approach.

  • You do not want to have unsold stock on your shelf. We have seen too many projects fail because they have run out of cash, despite having piles of stock around them. The product unit cost is not usually the largest cost in getting a new product to market.

The next trap to avoid is being tempted to buy a quantity of parts simply because there is a price break at a higher volume.

You should instead, (a) buy what will definitely sell and (b), be prepared to take a lower margin as part of the customer establishment process. Again - do not over-order!

This is by far the biggest failure we see.

As a engineering company it breaks our hearts when a project fails at the last hurdle.

Speak to any of our engineers and they will say the same – seeing a project through to completion and then watching as it becomes successful is one of the biggest thrils they get. In many cases it's their whole reason for doing the things they do.

One final point, development is a journey. Be enthusiastic, passionate, realistic and, I would suggest, cautious. Build a team with partners you trust, capable of delivering what is needed and importantly, has a good time doing it.


Read the previous blog post in this series - examining the production process.