Optimizing Cost through Early Supplier Involvement

John Scott Bull
Vice President of Sales & Marketing

Arnie Fulton
Vice President of Engineering

At Pace Industries, we pride ourselves on being a true partner with our customer. We’ve long recognized that we need to set ourselves apart from the rest in order to earn and keep your business. Our mission statement is to find uncommon, creative solutions that contribute to the success of our customers. One of the ways we do that is through our desire and ability to optimize cost for our customers.

Cost optimization can be achieved in a number of ways. We are committed to a lean manufacturing process whenever possible. By reducing waste, streamlining production processes and design, as well as improving workflow, our customers benefit by having reduced time-to-market and lower overall production costs. However, Early Supplier Involvement is where our greatest opportunity lies. By working early on with your engineers on the design activities, we can develop designs that are not only functional, but are also easier to cast. There have been multiple times that we have been brought into a project during the design phase and we have been able to reduce metal content, adjust shapes to improve productivity, and even offer alternatives like different alloys that would reduce the cost and meet customer criteria.

“We work with our customers to understand the function of part they want to design and provide design suggestions to achieve the functional requirements while incorporating features that are efficient to cast. In this way we satisfy our customer’s need for a functional part along with our need to have a design that satisfies the requirements for the die cast process.”

— Arnie Fulton, Vice President of Engineering

For example, we suggested a novel approach for a customer who had an automotive application. Typically, the part would be manufactured using a non-die cast process, but we felt that a die cast product would give them the functionality needed but at a lower cost of production. After we conducted casting design training sessions with their engineers and applied our education and expert guidance, we were able to show them how die casting would be a more cost efficient method of manufacturing for them.

In another instance, we worked with a lighting customer on a fast track LED project. At the time we were brought in, they already had a near final design. After review, we realized it wasn’t possible to manufacture the part in its current state. Following two days of discussion and revision, we were able to optimize the design for manufacturing, and remove more than two pounds of aluminum from the design, reducing the cost by several dollars.

Not every manufacturer has the capabilities to work with you in this way. We put a significant focus on working with our customers to find solutions to optimize cost. Being a full-service die cast company means we have the resources and technical expertise to partner with our customers early in the design phase and also once the part is in production. To truly optimize cost, you need more than a good price or a low margin. The value we provide in product design, weight reduction, keeping proper inventory levels on hand, close proximity to delivery locations, internal tool shops, good quality, and other benefits are what truly optimizes the cost of doing business with Pace versus other die casters.  We welcome the opportunity to show you how we can help you achieve the right balance of design, function and cost.

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