Is my product idea feasible? Part 2

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Feasibility Studies are a crucial tool in ensuring your project gets off to the best start in the right direction. Catch up on Part 1 of Is my product idea feasible? Which explains the benefits of Feasibility Studies, how to get the best from them and how they help you to visualise the end goal.

3) Understanding Design Standards

It is important to be aware of statutory requirements for your product before you develop your design any further. These standards will govern elements like size, shape, materials, construction, emissions and immunities, and end of life considerations of the product, so having an understanding of them ahead of time is a big advantage. This is especially true if you plan to sell the product in multiple territories, each with different standards. A brief summary based on a cursory investigation should be included. Depending on the product this may include information relating to the following:

“CE, General Product Safety Regulations, European Commission Directives, Underwriters Laboratories (US), Trading Standards, Food Standards Agency, Food and Drug Administration (US), Federal Communications Commission (US), Consumer Product Safety Commission (US), standards relating to children, standards relating to electrical devices etc…”

4) Manufacture and Assembly

It is helpful to be aware of manufacturing constraints for the known components and to get the manufacturers advice during the quotation process to ensure that the design is optimised for performance and unit cost. Other constraints include:

– Geographical location and logistics
– Investment cost and amortisation
– Mechanical requirements of parts
– Manufacturability
– Method of assembly
– Quality assurance

5) Running the Numbers –
Preliminary Costings

To determine a realistic budget for a product, it is important to compile a cost breakdown for tooling, parts manufacture, and assembly from manufacturers. This is normally done by submitting requests for quotation along with part and assembly specifications.

Sated Design can prepare specifications for manufacturers to quote against, and depending on the client’s requirements Sated Design can provide this as a pack for the client to issue, or Sated Design can perform a costing exercise and present the client with a finished cost breakdown.

Sated Design’s feasibility study service can help you to make the best decisions for your business before you take the leap into the industrial design process. Get in touch to discuss your project and begin the journey.

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Is my product idea feasible? Part 1

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What is a feasibility study?

In product development, a feasibility study asks whether or not your project is do-able. It should be conducted at the outset of a project against the background context of the business, and it takes into account all factors likely to have an impact, including economic, technical, legal and scheduling aspects.

Will the project achieve the desired effect within the set budget and timeframe? Can you adequately fund the project? Do you have the technical resources to transform your project into reality or will you need to outsource? Will there be any legal considerations or conflicts that arise from your project? Can you achieve your goals within the specified deadlines?

These answers and many others allow business leaders to decide if there is enough potential for the project to succeed or that it is worth allocating resources towards pursuing it further.

1) Prepare – Where Do I Start?

To make the best use of a feasibility study, you should collect together all of the relevant information you have relating to the project. Each project will be different but the following should be considered:

– Costings and budget
– Material preferences
– Target market
– Anticipated life cycle of the product
– Aesthetics & Styling
– Pre-existing or problematic Intellectual Property (IP)
– Funding and investment
– Technological requirements
– Legal requirements and standards
– Milestones and deadlines

2) Visualising Your Product

In most cases, visual images of a product are one of the quickest ways to get feedback from interested parties, collaborators, stakeholders, and users. Most projects will require some form of visual material to communicate ideas effectively. A picture tells a thousand words and Sated Design can help you to tell the best story.

Mood boards, hand-drawn sketches, shaded industrial design illustrations and 3D CGI renders are all examples of visual presentation techniques. The number of images and the techniques used to communicate ideas will vary dependant on time, budget, intended use, and the complexity of the subject.

Coming up in Part 2 – Understanding Standards, Manufacture and Assembly, and Running the Numbers – Preliminary Costings.

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