Harwin formally launched its subcontract manufacturing capabilities at the Southern Manufacturing & Electronics Exhibition at Farnborough on 11/12 February 2009. In fact Harwin has always undertaken contract manufacturing work utilising the capacity that it has in its manufacturing facility. Harwin has a policy of replacing all its production equipment – stamping, turning, moulding and plating – every five years, so the company already has a state-of-the-art facility that is required to support the manufacture of its high-reliability interconnect components.
Because the company is now seeing manufacturing returning to the UK from 'low-cost' manufacturing regions – predominantly the Far East – Harwin has decided to pursue and support its contract manufacturing services. Mick Osborne has recently been appointed Sales Manager for subcontract manufacturing: "One of Harwin's main strengths is our commitment to retaining all key connector manufacturing processes in-house, here in the UK in Portsmouth. This means that we can offer very short lead times, and be very flexible and responsive to our customers' needs. To compete with Chinese and Eastern European producers we must have the latest production equipment – and a highly skilled and flexible workforce. That combination of capabilities is also very attractive to other companies who are looking to outsource, but who do not want the risk of incurring hidden supply chain costs that are often experienced when working with a manufacturing partner on the other side of the world.
"Our modern BS EN ISO 9001:2000 manufacturing site has been designed, equipped and staffed to produce the highest quality parts – many of which carry BS certification – and it is this resource that we are now offering to the market in general. Our background as a connector supplier to customers in demanding, hi-rel markets including aerospace, medical and defence means that our subcontract customers can be assured of a high quality of work and service."