By: Lauren Cordeiro, Ph.D - Consultant at Endeavor Consulting Group, LLC
Across the Life Sciences Industry, manufacturing can span everything from Medical Devices and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) to Nutraceuticals and Cosmetics. Each of these products are unique, requiring specialized manufacturing processes and skilled teams to go from conception to commercialization. While the manufacturing methods for each of these Life Science products are distinct, the one common factor is that having the right manufacturing partner is crucial to the success of the product, and success begins with the search process. Whether a startup is launching its first product, an established company is looking for a new manufacturer for a legacy product or planning to expand its product portfolio, here are a few key ideas to consider in the selection of a manufacturing partner (besides just cost).
1. Technical Capabilities
Based on the technical requirements for your product, identify any specialty equipment or testing that will be needed. Ideally, finding a manufacturer that already has the equipment in place and in-house analytical capabilities will save on purchasing additional equipment, or finding another partner exclusively for testing.
Ask a potential manufacturer if they have worked with similar products before. Their prior knowledge means they can provide valuable insight throughout your development or scale-up process to potentially save on time and cost. Also, ensure they have the trained personnel with the experience you’re looking for.
Find a manufacturer with a stringent Quality program. Having strict Quality standards is crucial to the success of launching a product. A potential manufacturer should be able to demonstrate their compliance with all applicable regulations.
4. Growth Potential
Consider a manufacturer’s potential to grow with your business. You should note whether a manufacturing partner can scale to meet your volume needs, in addition to their ability to handle future products that you may have in mind.
One of the most important factors in selecting a suitable manufacturer is communication. Pay close attention to their responsiveness and willingness to provide documentation. A partner that is upfront and can provide detailed information will be invaluable during inevitable challenges.