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Find the answers to common questions we are asked about product design.

What does a product designer or design engineer do?

A product designer or design engineer is predominantly a problem solver. We develop products which help solve some of life’s problems, therefore enhancing the user’s experience. A product designer uses many different tools to design a product; from sketching basic ideas with a pencil and paper through to 3D-printing models for testing and validation.

I’ve got an idea but I have no clue where to start, can you help?

Getting in touch with us is a good place to start!  We’ll ask a few questions about your idea and also longer term goals in order to determine whether we can help or not.  Some things to consider before we chat are:

  1. Are you planning on creating a brand and business from this idea?
  2. Have you thought about where you might manufacture your product?
  3. Do you have sustainability goals you want to achieve?

What if I’m not local to your studio, can we still work together?

Of course we can!  In fact, we’ve got some clients that we’ve never even met in person but have still managed to deliver fantastic product design to them.  We’ve actually found that by working remotely, we can spend less time travelling and more time coming up with great ideas.

What makes npd different from other product design agencies?

There are a lot of very talented product design agencies across the country (and we encourage you to talk to as many as possible!) and we all offer pretty much the same services. For us, our difference comes from building lasting relationships with our clients who are looking for a partner for their journey from idea to reality. In fact, through these relationships, we offer so much more than just design, helping guide them through the maze that is product development.

Where should I plan to manufacture my product?

This will be very different for every project and there are a number of factors that will affect your decision. Given recent challenges with Brexit and COVID-19, we’re seeing a lot of our customers find manufacturing more locally to be more beneficial than the initial cost savings from manufacturing in the Far East.

I need a prototype made, how do you do that?

Firstly, we’ll need detailed designs and drawings that show the product in full detail. These drawings and 3D models will then be used to produce a prototype. Once you’ve got hold of the first prototype, you’ll begin a process of testing the functionality and purpose, then reiterating the design ready to produce a new prototype.

This process will refine the design and solve any functional issues before committing to an expensive manufacturing set-up, where it is difficult to make large amendments. We work with a number of prototyping partners who all specialise in different techniques, in order to provide you with exactly what you need.

How do you visualise a product?

There are a number of ways to visualise a product, from time-consuming digital sketches, through to hyper-realistic 3D visuals.We’ll tailor our approach depending on the project, but usually we’ll need to develop the detailed 3D models in order to then visualise them using the industry standard software; Keyshot.

We’ve also got partners who can develop augmented reality for your design, so that you can see it in situ and to scale.

What is Sustainable Product Design?

Sustainable product design is the method of creating new products whilst considering the environmental, economic and social impacts these products will have from initial idea through design, production and to the end of the product life cycle.

What is the NPD (New Product Development) Process?

New product development is the process of taking a new product from idea to market.  There are several stages in the new product development process.  These are

  • Product Idea
  • Concept Design
  • Product Engineering
  • Prototyping
  • Product Visualisation

We put people first and focus on keeping it honest and real

If you're looking for a creative team of product design experts, we'd love you to get in touch and chat about your ideas.

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