Engineering design is a complex process that can, at times, seem overwhelming. Creative Mechanisms is here to simplify it for you. This starts with setting engagement expectations. Here are a few things to recognize up front:
1. The level of detail in the design concept will adjust to the client firm’s expertise. If your firm has an engineer in-house, for example, we will start with a synopsis of their current progress and push the ball forward after identifying pain points. Creative Mechanisms can and often does help in idea development - starting from something as simple as an artist’s rendering with call-outs, however, there is no need to re-invent the wheel if a simple fix will solve the problem. Oftentimes the simplest solutions are the most elegant.
2. Design criteria establish guide-posts for product development but do not predetermine any particular solution. Good criteria often result in multiple solutions to a single problem. Keep your focus on the end result, rather than the process used to reach it.
Note: A product engineering firm like Creative Mechanisms is capable of finding more ways to solve a problem when there are fewer fixed design criteria. Typically we will carefully question our clients to develop criteria that will ensure a successful prototype. Understanding this up front helps to avoid confusion over what’s to be created. In the end, it’s not unusual for some aspects of the original idea to be set aside, discarded as unworkable, or replaced with other details as the work moves forward. If the criteria are developed to focus on the product’s goals while otherwise allowing flexibility, the results can be surprising great.
3. Team structure impacts the free flow of ideas so devote time to finding the delicate balance. Particularly with projects that are more complex or have tight deadlines, it’s not unusual for a client focus on the interim steps and advising the vendor how to do accomplish each one. This can do more harm than good, since a capable vendor should know more than its client about how to reach those goals. If you did your homework while selecting a vendor, this is the time to trust in your own process and let the design professionals do what you hired them to.
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