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Guide for Selection of an Electronic Manufacturing Service Provider

Guide for Selection of an Electronic Manufacturing Service Provider

Electronic Manufacturing Service (EMS) providers are companies providing manufacturing services on a contract basis for various services to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). They provide different kinds of service, offering a high level of expertise in the specific fields required by their customers.

Electronic manufacturing services in general include:

  • Printed Circuit Board Assembly – Installation and attachment (soldering) of electronic components to printed circuit boards. These may be thru-hole, or surface mount technology parts.
  • Cable Assembly – Custom-created cables or harnesses.
  • Electromechanical Assembly – Combining electrical and mechanical parts needed to make mechanical equipment functional. Electronic assembly companies follow your specifications / drawings to complete your system or box-build requirements.
  • Testing –There are different ways to test your PCBs depending on your requirements. Some of the methods are
  • Prototyping –Some of the services are,
    • Prototyping (PCBA)
    • Design for Procurement (cost)
    • 3D Printing
    • Soft tooling

Outsourcing some or all of your manufacturing process can save you a lot of time and money compared to doing everything independently. To succeed, you should look for the best match of electronics manufacturing companies possible for your program. Hopefully this guide will provide help in your selection process.

Advantages to Keep in Mind:

  • Using an EMS company will lower your cost and save you capital investments and focus your resources solely on core competencies.
  • EMS companies have loads of manufacturing experience and pride in upholding high product quality standards
  • With an EMS provider, you can expect to deliver on time and faster to market to give a competitive edge.

Key Factors for Consideration


Make sure to take into account a company’s experience and how well their former projects align with what you want. Don’t be afraid to ask critical questions, and do your research about the company to determine its capabilities.

Design Proficiency

Some EMS companies are very design-proficient, and others may be just electronics assembly companies, or they could be highly design-proficient in certain areas, but those areas may not be what you need for your product.

International Presence

Having an electronics manufacturing service company with worldwide experience is vital since they understand a market’s possibilities outside of local markets which means access to more customers resulting in higher revenue and profit.

Having a physical presence at a local market also makes it easier to communicate with customers because of fewer language and cultural barriers. Additionally, the companies will be more agile, and it will be easier to find solutions that suit your needs.


Technology is developing rapidly so ensure your EMS provider is capable and up to date you’re your product/project requirements.

Quality Focus

Having both top quality assurance and quality control means that the two balance each other out, giving you a good turnover as well as a durable product. Quality assurance prevents defects and problems in the product during manufacturing. Quality control is testing the products and ensuring that the quality has maintained its standard or improved before manufacturing.

Having good quality assurance but not reasonable quality control can mean that your product is assured but not tested. If your product has reasonable quality control but no assurance, it is tested, but the quality is not maintained over time.

Supply Chain Management System

A good supply chain ensures that your electronic manufacturing service company knows precisely how and where to find your products’ components.If you don’t have a well-researched supply chain management system in place, an abundance of time can be spent having the electronics manufacturing services company tracking your components down.


Product testing for assurance production meets your performance requirements.

Every company has unique requirements for their EMS provider. Every EMS company is different. Here are some key use as guide in your process:

    Can they meet your anticipated volumes, or product technology?
    Some companies prefer a hands-off approach. Once an agreement has been reached, then it’s up to the provider to work independently.Others prefer an interactive relationship. Make sure the type of service you desire, is available.
    Are there pre-payment requirements or are there various service levels offered?
    Does your company have Corporate Social Responsibility guidelines which your suppliers must meet? Are there environmental initiatives to adhere to?
    Knowing your rights is very important since you might be working with third-party providers who wish you to share your information with them, and you should protect yourself against theft. When looking for a company that offers EMS, make sure to find out how they will protect your property.

Optima Technology is a global provider of PCBs, PCB Assemblies, Cables and System Assemblies located in Lewisberry, PA and New Delhi, India. Since 1995, Optima has specialized in providing local support coupled with cost-effective pricing via offshore manufacturing through our ISO approved facilities. Please reach out to if you’d like to discuss further your PCB or Electronic Assembly needs.