Have you always wanted to set up your own business? If you have a solid background in manufacturing industries, the time is right to take that big step and you’re ready to take on the challenge, here’s some valuable start-up advice for you.
In most cases, a manufacturing business requires a substantial up-front financial commitment, specialised facilities, workers with unique skills, as well as equipment and raw materials. You’ll have to overcome some difficult obstacles, but if you’re successful, the rewards and sense of accomplishment make it all worthwhile.
Take a look at these five basic steps to help you set up a manufacturing business. With dedication and hard work, there’s every chance that you can grow it into a highly lucrative enterprise.
1. Surround Yourself With A Solid Support Network
Although you’ll start out with great enthusiasm and energy, it’s wise to remember that you can’t take on the world single-handedly. There’ll be times when you’re going to need some guidance and a helping hand. Don’t wait until the dark days before you look for support. There are a number of organisations you can join – the Federation of Small Businesses, the Chamber of Commerce in your area, and the Department for International Trade. These groups can assist with everything from guidance and grants, to free advice and expertise and they can also help you from making costly mistakes. It’s also a very good idea to hook up with someone who has knowledge and expertise in your type of manufacturing concern. Meet regularly with them for a business chat – talking to someone with experience about problems in your business can help solve issues and keep you motivated.
2. The Location Of Your Business Is Critical
It’s vital to choose the right geographical area to set up your business, as you’ll need a solid support infrastructure close by. It’s tempting to go for cheap premises but for many reasons this is normally not the best solution. Good transport links are essential to get your finished product to your customers and the raw materials you need to you. You also need workers nearby with the necessary skills you require. You should also check whether you can apply for any tax breaks from the government or your local authority for establishing your business in a particular area.
3. Choose The Right Premises For Manufacturing Your Product
OK, so you’ve found the right location but now you need to find the best possible premises in which to manufacture your product. Will you need three-phase electricity for your machinery? Most domestic buildings only have single-phase. You may need a large warehouse with enough racking space. The floors may have to withstand heavy traffic in the form of pallet or fork lift trucks. Is the office space sufficient for your needs? Are the telecommunications systems up to date? Is there enough parking for your employees and your customers? These are questions that need to be carefully considered.
4. Your Employees Can Make Or Break Your Business
Even if you have a great product, a superb location and your premises are state-of-the-art, if you don’t have the right team behind you, you’re not going to make it. You need an experienced, skilled and happy labour force that has access to good transport links. Try to pay your workers a little more than they could get elsewhere, or perhaps incentivise them, so they’ll be more likely to stay with you and be more loyal – a workforce that comes and goes is a big drain on any company’s finances.
5. Your Choice Of Business Model
Make sure your business model is sound. You may well have a great product but perhaps there’s someone who already has the right kind of equipment and facilities to manufacture it for you – in which case you only need to set up a distribution network. Are you sure your product will appeal to a large enough market? Is someone else manufacturing a similar product? Are you sure you possess the relevant management skills to set up and coordinate everything that makes up a manufacturing business?
These factors may seem obvious but that’s why they’re often ignored. It’s easy to get distracted and lose focus in all the excitement of setting up a new business. It’s the little things, the simple details that, if ignored, can make the difference between failure and success.