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October 19, 2020
Are you too secretive with your new product idea?
Written by: Damir Cvetojevic
You have a great idea for a product, and you’re making sure to keep a tight lid on all of your plans. But are you keeping your product idea too much of a secret for too long? This may be a huge mistake.
“You have to dare to get feedback so you can gain valuable knowledge from people who have experience and know all the regulatory requirements,” says Nemko Sales Director Scandinavia, Frode Lukassen.
If you develop your product in total secrecy, you could end up spending vast amounts of development time and cost on aspects of the product that should never have been invested in. For companies with new product ideas, the earlier they reach out to Nemko, the better – ensuring the product development doesn’t incur unnecessary costs and that the product can go to market as soon as possible.
“Customers can come to us as early as the idea phase, they don’t have to have a prototype at all,” says Lukassen.
Remember, an idea is not valuable until it becomes a product that fulfils all regulatory requirements for the markets you’re targeting. It pays to do your homework ahead of time, because otherwise the path to compliance could be less straightforward than you planned.
There are basic questions that need to be answered very early in the development process. What is your product intended for and which markets are you targeting?
If developers work for too long without dialogue with knowledgeable experts, they could actually be spending time and resources on aspects of the product that are either unnecessary or are too costly to test for certification.
“Getting the product to the market is not about the customer coming to us with a final product that they only want a seal of approval on,” says Lukassen. “They know their product best, but we know directives, standards, regulations and what testing needs to be done.”
That’s why Nemko puts so much emphasis on a close partnership and dialogue during the pre-testing phase.
One example is the need for electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) testing for products with radio communication to prevent interference with or damage to other equipment. Perhaps your product has several radios in the product, when only one or fewer would be much smarter. Testing several different types of radio in a product will entail a much more complicated product and cost much more than testing one type of radio.
“Up to 80% of the products we test at Nemko will fail an initial EMC test,” says Lukassen.
If you’ve developed your product and not done any pre-testing, this failure of the EMC test may be the result. Then there is a big risk that you need to retest. Perhaps, in the meantime, the test chamber has already been booked for the follow-up tests that now have to be postponed.
Another example is the use of sub-assemblies in your product. Are the components already certified, or do they also need to be tested? If they do, that will increase the cost of testing significantly.
It can also be very important for innovators to be working with a lab with a local presence in their country. This prevents delays in the development process, as feedback can be acted upon by the development engineers immediately. If you are working with a testing lab in a different region, not to mention a different continent, not only do prototypes spend valuable time being shipped back and forth, there is also a risk that you lose the crucial advantage of clear and immediate communication.
And finally, it goes without saying that Nemko has the strictest routines and accredited processes for how we work with information, ensuring the safety of our customers’ intellectual property. That’s why so many well-known and innovative companies partner with us – from pre-compliance, to testing and all the way to the world’s markets, they choose Scandinavian trust.
Tags: Product testing , Pre-compliance