Plastic Apples to Apples

When receiving bids on a new plastic injection molding program, it is important to gather and analyze all of the relevant data. This is true for both the building of molds and for the production of parts.

However, just like snowflakes and fingerprints, molders and the proposals they create are all different. So, it can be challenging when comparing the quotes you receive. Are the molders quoting a different number of molds and cavities in each? Are the molds of the same quality? What are the guarantees? Do the quotes have different pricing tiers for the production of parts? Are there any hidden or extra fees? What are the payment terms? You get the idea.

In an effort to calibrate the data received, it definitely helps to put the specific information you want in a formal Request For Quote (RFQ) package that all the molders receive. Ideally, the person or department responsible for the part and project requirements has supplied you with them. Additionally, be sure to include your specific needs and expectations for the job and the relationship.

Some buyers include a form or spreadsheet the suppliers are required to complete and submit with their quotes (although some molders won’t be happy about it but, if they aren’t, do you really want to work with them?). Of course, that will not guarantee identical elements across the board, but it should help, too.

To stay organized, it is a good idea to create a spreadsheet that lists the main important items. In addition to your unique requirements, we have a buyer’s guide that explains what most of the essential elements in a plastic injection molding quote are, which should assist in your analysis.

While there may be a tendency to compare only the different prices you receive, analyzing proposals to build valuable company assets like molds, to produce parts and components your company will use or sell to others, and to enter into a long term business relationship requires a more sophisticated and thorough examination. Accordingly, make sure you are identifying the separate, important factors and evaluating them consistently. Lastly, in addition to the individual items, be sure to consider the overall value that each company provides and whether they are the injection molding partner for which you are looking.


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