On September 28, 2020, the world reached the sad and sobering milestone of 1 million deaths caused by COVID-19. In the three ensuing months, approximately 625,000 more deaths were added to the tally, and the nearly 73 million active cases around the global are added to daily — and at astounding rates.1
The pandemic has populations scared and experts stymied as to how to manage and eventually eradicate the virus. For obvious reasons the medical and healthcare industries are leading the charge in terms of innovation, with antimicrobial resins and antimicrobial polymers playing major roles in effective solutions.
The consumer market is demanding. The need for and availability of products is largely predicated on economies wherein consumer purchase confidence can be fickle. It leaves consumer market OEMs to balance product quality, performance, and cost to remain competitive.
It also compels them to be purposeful in creating and maintaining their supply chain. Suppliers that have proven proficiencies across a range of needs provide a stable framework upon which an OEM can build a versatile — and valuable — partnership.
The escalation of political, trade, and pandemic-related tensions have called manufacturers and their suppliers into question. Some supply chains are snapping under the strain, and OEMs are left to find answers for — and rectify — costly failures.
Nearly half of respondents to a recent Thomas Industrial poll placed “Fabricated Materials (machined, stamped, extruded, or molded material)” at the top of the list of things needed for supply chain stabilization and consistent production.1 With that comes close scrutiny of custom injection molding companies when OEMs are streamlining suppliers.
Medical device design engineers often make allowances for the impact that the molding process has on plastic part manufacturability. They carefully consider a variety of design factors like the materials chosen, the part shape and features, surface finish, and the properties of the tool itself. So, why involve an injection molder early in the medical device development phase?
Involving an experienced injection molder early in the design process safeguards against adverse outcomes that a designer may not have anticipated.
Globally, the annual injection-molded plastics market is currently valued at approximately $260 billion, with a projected 5% CAGR over the next five years.1
These substantial numbers validate the continued and increasing reliance on injection-molded solutions for a variety of applications across industries. They also indicate how much the role of a custom injection molder has changed, shifting from general supplier to trusted partner.
According to global aging data compiled by the United Nations, by 2050 1 in 6 people in the world will be over the age of 65.1 That's a dramatic jump from current statistics that place the same segment of the population at 1 in 11.1
As a result — and in light of spikes in medical demand due to COVID-19 for all age groups — healthcare is rapidly shifting from clinics and hospitals to in-home care and smaller, non-traditional facilities.
Several industrial sectors are converting metal components to plastic to gain efficiencies in cost, weight, performance, aesthetics, and durability. While these are compelling reasons to consider plastic versus metal, the process isn’t necessarily right for all industrial applications.
A comprehensive feasibility analysis can help you determine if your project is suitable for metal-to-plastic conversion by evaluating it from three fundamental perspectives: design, manufacturability, and return on investment.
The relationship an OEM maintains with its injection molder is integral to successful production of complex plastic parts. Often the partnership remains a value-add across projects and time.
But, there are instances when alignment between OEM expectations and molder capabilities erodes either suddenly or incrementally. Regardless, the outcome is the same: it’s time for the OEM to shuffle suppliers and find a new injection molder.
On-time delivery (OTD). Suppliers are defined by it. Industrial buyers demand it. A recent study about supplier sourcing confirms it, reporting that "delivery performance" is the most important of six factors buyers consider when compiling supplier shortlists.
The focus on supplier OTD takes on added significance in light of the massive supply disruptions caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. How well or how poorly a supplier is navigating the crisis and meeting OTD expectations provides a glimpse into their grasp on materials handling and production processes.