Throughout the history of PCBA design and manufacturing, innovators have continually incorporated new techniques and processes to ensure the delivery of quality electronic products when and where they are needed. However, no one has faced the widespread supply chain issues of today. Viable solutions are only possible if you identify the underlying factors that pose the greatest risks to the board construction process.
Perhaps the single most important aspect of PCBA design that needs to be optimized to avoid risks to your manufacturing process, as well as performance and operational contingencies, is component selection. In today’s environment, successfully solving electronic component supply chain issues must be at the top of the list of considerations for developers to meet customer delivery demands and maximize ROI. Doing so requires that developers understand which issues have the greatest impact and what options are available to de-risk the board build process.
Understanding Electronic Component Supply Chain Issues
There was a time when the biggest component supply chain concern was finding components with the capabilities to meet your PCBA or electronics product performance objectives. However, as the applications for electronic circuit boards increased, so did the numbers and types of manufactured components. And additional considerations, such as the proliferation of counterfeits (especially in critical industries like aerospace, military, medical and automotive), led to the need for more control over electronic supply chains.
Managing and securing the component supply chain has never been a more critical enterprise. The global component shortages, the effects of COVID-19 government shutdowns, and the application of differing manufacturing strategies are factors that affect component supply chains. Knowing the many challenges that affect the reliability and security of your electronic component supply chain is the first step towards mitigating their impact on your board build process.
Common Electronic Component Supply Chain Problems
⛔ Constantly changing material lead times.
⛔ Lack of time, resources, and expertise required to manage the supply chain.
⛔ Inadaptability when unforeseen situations arise.
⛔ Increased prices because of component unavailability.
⛔ Inconsistency in supplier inventories.
Although no magic fix can solve all electronic component supply chain issues, a good component sourcing strategy can mitigate the problems listed above.
PCBA Manufacturing Component Supply Chain Options
The need for effective supply chain management is not a new consideration among the electronics industry’s most advanced CMs. Discovering that selected components are unavailable, whether due to obsolescence or more unpredictable reasons, can be disruptive or even halt PCB assembly. Therefore, many CMs make real-time component data verification and a reliable vendor network prioritized features of their QC efforts.
When selecting your PCBA manufacturing partner, supply chain management options should inform your decision, as listed below.
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CM Supply Chain Service Options
This option offers the least support from your CM, as you are responsible for providing all components for your board build. While cost-effective, this option requires that you bear all responsibility for component availability, quality, and accuracy.
- Partial Turnkey
With partial turnkey, your CM takes care of most supply chain issues. However, you’ll still need to acquire and supply specialty or exotic components. This service will defray some costs; yet, it is essential that your CM employs good supply chain QC processes.
- Full Turnkey
Opting for a full turnkey service will free your team to focus their efforts on optimizing the design. Your CM will manage all aspects of the component supply chain, which can significantly reduce your internal project resource expenditure on engineering and administrative work hours related to electronic component supply chain issues.
As indicated above, your choice of component supply chain service can have a significant impact on your ability to meet product delivery schedules. Equally important, though, is your choice of CM to forge a board-building relationship with, as it is their expertise and emphasis on mitigating electronic component supply chain issues that will dictate the quality of your PCBA development process.
|Tempo’s Software-Driven Smart Factory Delivers the Industry’s Leading Custom Turnkey PCBA Manufacturing Services
Tempo Automation leads the industry in fast, high-quality PCBA prototyping and on-demand production. This includes a supply chain service package that offers a Pre-DFM report, a BOM analysis report, a lead time report, and a cost-optimized custom quote. Ongoing services that identify backup sources, risk monitoring and analysis, advance buys, and bonded inventory are available for select relationships.
And to help you get started on the best path, we furnish information for your DFM checks and enable you to easily view and download DRC files. If you’re an Altium Designer or Cadence Allegro user, you can simply add these files to your PCB design software. For Mentor Pads or other design packages, we furnish DRC information in other CAD formats and Excel.
If you are ready to have your design manufactured, try our quote tool to upload your CAD and BOM files. If you want more information on electronic component supply chain issues and how to mitigate them, contact us.