In an earlier post we wrote about the pros and cons of outsourcing engineering work. Once you get past this initial question and you choose to outsource your engineering projects to a service provider, the next step is to find a firm that you can trust.  Cons associated with outsourcing can be minimized or eliminated through careful consideration of potential providers. In this blog, we discuss how to choose the right engineering service provider for your project.

1) Figure out what you need from an engineering service provider.

Before looking into various outsourcing options, it is important to understand exactly what you need from an engineering services firm and what your own capabilities are. Engineering projects move an idea or concept through the steps of design, documentation, analysis, prototyping and production. Does your company need to contract out each of these steps, or do you have some in-house capabilities? Do you need a solution to a problem or do you already have an idea that you want to see designed and prototyped? It is important to answer these questions before approaching an engineering service provider, so you know exactly what to look for.

2) Look at their portfolio.

Reputable engineering firms will have a portfolio of past projects and clients that you can refer to. Take a close look at their portfolio to determine if their work aligns with your needs. You can also contact their past clients and ask about the firm’s work, trustworthiness and professionalism. Using referrals is a great way to determine the right fit.

For examples, see TriMech Services’ case studies:

>> Brain Sentry for Mechanical Design

>> Cottrell Contracting for 2D-3D Conversion

>> Ingenco with Cabinet Design Layout

3) Do some research into their talent pool, background and qualifications.

Discuss your project with providers, and make sure you’re hiring a firm that has a great vetting system in place for their engineers. Ask about their education, experience and background. You want to be sure that your engineering service provider has the qualifications to meet your needs. Most firms have a large talent pool at their disposal—take advantage of it!

4) Ask about their processes and software.

It’s important to be aware of the software and tools that the engineering service provider works with. The best engineering service providers will be up-to-date on the latest technologies and have the best engineering resources available. One of the biggest pros to outsourcing engineering projects is having access to resources you wouldn’t otherwise have, so you want to be sure that they have the best.

5) Make pricing the last consideration.

When it comes to engineering work, the most important factor is qualifications. Pricing should be one of the last considerations when choosing an engineering service provider because only the most highly qualified can get your job done right.

Choosing an engineering service provider that you trust requires research and careful consideration. With open communication about your needs and expectations, you can create a great partnership with an engineering firm. If you’re considering outsourcing your project, contact TriMech Services.