Engineer to Order (ETO)

Gatehouse Design can support ETO companies both with bespoke project design and providing break out elements of product work using CTO production processes. For companies that provide standard products as integral elements of larger ETO projects, this can make a dramatic improvement in reducing time, cost, errors whilst increasing customer satisfaction and company profitability.

Many ETO companies provide both systems and standalone equipment. Their equipment sales are based upon standards used by the company to ensure consistency and accuracy. As a generalisation, many companies continue to manage equipment sales as any other ETO project. The design of the equipment does not start until the company receives a purchase order from the customer. By working differently, the company can save time, cost and reduce errors.

Larger projects should proceed using the ETO model, but this should be adapted to allow CTO project elements. The inclusion of CTO products will allow the project to be simplified, it will reduce risk, allow change to be managed easily and will add profitability to the overall project.

Having worked in the ETO sector for 30 years, we understand the management of large projects. We can help develop a different approach which maximises the profitability of equipment sales, whilst retaining the flexibility required for managing large projects where much of the design is impossible to develop until the order commences. Efficiency comes from the recognition that projects often comprise of both familiar and unfamiliar elements.

Gatehouse design can help with

  • Design solutions as required by the ETO project
  • New product development, developing strong well-structured standards.
  • Incremental product development, improving the efficiency of a product or manufacturing process. Improvement of existing product definitions which can help secure new customers or manufacturing processes.
  • Modular products for companies that offer many product variants
  • Product configuration for companies that have already invested in modular products, reducing time and cost
  • Design automation can be used to drive downstream processes such as 3D CAD, resource planning systems (ERP) or other processes.

 

Definition

ETO is a variant of make-to-order production approach in which engineering definition starts only after a customer’s order is received.

engineer to order

 

Design solutions

We can provide design solutions for all parts of the overall project design. Our engineers can carry out site surveys where required and work as an extension of your overall team to provide well-designed solutions for specific projects.

New product development

We can help companies develop new products or modify existing products to suit new markets. Our engineers can help you at every phase of new product development from concept, evaluation, detailing, production and securing new intellectual property.

 

Incremental product development

Using your existing product, we can help extend or modify the product to extend market share or to develop new market opportunities. We can also help modify products to suit new manufacturing processes or make improvements which can save time or cost.

 

Modular products

Gatehouse design can assist CTO companies to develop modular products to suit their assembly processes. Providing modular documentation required by different customers or markets. For example, documents may be required in different languages. Modular documentation can be used to simplify the production of documentation, streamlining the order fulfilment process. Modular documentation may consist of complete documents or modular content.

 

Product and document configuration

Product configuration can be used to quickly and accurately select modular products. The product configurator eliminates the need for product design following an order. Product information is available immediately and is always current and accurate. Product configuration reduces time and cost and ensures accuracy.

Where there are few product variants a document configurator may still be worth considering.  Where the management of documents requires considerable time, a document configurator may be used. The document configurator creates or collates documents based on user selections. Documents may include commercial documents such as invoices, transport notes, technical manuals and instructions, compliance certification, product guarantees, export documentation and much more.

Product configuration provides Sales teams speed and knowledge and can be used to generate documents at the touch of a button. Including product configuration moves a company towards a configure-to-order production model and creates opportunities for agile manufacturing.

 

Design automation

Design automation can be used to reduce design work further. A design automation system can be used to automatically produce 3D models, detailed drawings, pass information to ERP systems or other production systems. In some cases, design automation can automate fully design processes that would previously have taken hundreds of hours.

 

Lean improvements

We understand that it is essential to reduce waste in your business. Gatehouse Design is dedicated to helping companies make lean improvements. We can help by reducing waste in the following areas;

  • Transport – Reduce unnecessary movement of information
  • Inventory – Have just one source of information
  • Movement – Reduce unnecessary business processes
  • Waiting – Ensure information is available immediately
  • Over-production – Produce only the information required
  • Over-processing – Provide information only when it is required
  • Defects – Remove defects from the source
  • Skills – Deliver quality information to anyone authorised to get it

 

Agile improvements

We can help companies develop their business to become agiler. By embracing the power of a modular product, product configuration and design automation companies can provide customers with the exact product configuration they choose quickly and efficiently. Agile allows the company to respond to change rapidly and the modular products allow incremental product development to create new markets and opportunities whilst extending the life of existing products. Information will be shared easily throughout the business.

  • Customisation – Provide customers exactly what they want
  • Speed – Supply customers quickly
  • Ability to change – Highly responsive to change