The 3 Top Challenges of a Design Engineer

By: SiliconExpert on December 20th, 2022

Saving time and money is crucial for design engineers. We are seeing an increased number in companies having to redesign products during the recent supply chain shortage. When one critical component is no longer available, a redesign could be required of the engineer. Here are the top three challenges we have discussed with experts in the electronics industry:

  1. Finding parts that meet specifications 
  2. Finding multi-sourced parts  
  3. Facing reliability or quality issues with parts, forcing a redesign 


Finding Parts that Meet Specifications  

Being able to find specific parts can take time and effort. Most electronics part search tools will give a basic layer of inventory, pricing, and parametric search features, but SiliconExpert’s Part Search comes equipped a Years to End-of-Life estimator, an alerts system that notifies customers of low inventory on a part, and a robust inventory of similar/alternative parts that identifies pin-to-pin matches across manufacturers. 

By having such a large database of options and risk-mitigating features within a search tool, engineers can save on valuable time and money during the design process. 


Finding Multi-Sourced Parts  

When searching for parts, multi-sourcing can keep the product design and procurement as flexible as possible. Some parts are flagged as not having any alternatives in production from other manufacturers, which can lead to a serious redesign issue if a part cannot be procured due to a shutdown of a factory or lockdown of a country. 

Every part in our database comes with a risk grade for alternatives and multi-sourcing risk. Avoid parts with a high-risk designation in multi-sourcing because alternatives will be impossible to find. 

Low risk multi-sourced parts will carry multiple alternatives currently in production from other manufacturers. In today’s environment of constant disruptions and supply chain shortages, it is essential to find alternative options to keep your product design as fluid and adaptable to changes in components as possible.

Facing Reliability or Quality Issues with Parts, Forcing a Redesign 

Manufacturers face numerous reliability and quality issues, many of which they have no control over. For instance, a microchip may suddenly come with a PCN that signals impending obsolescence or a product is not functioning correctly, and you suspect the chips you purchased are counterfeit. How can you tell? What can manufacturers do to proactively avoid these situations? 

SiliconExpert’s BOM Manager is not a simple procurement tool – it provides active risk management features to help users avoid parts with a high risk of obsolescence or counterfeiting. Automated alerts can be setup to email users when these risk are present in their BOM. 


Manage Product Design Risk with BOM Manager 

Turn these red flags into green, by giving your design engineers the support they need with software and tools that can help them save time, costs, and avoid re-design. SiliconExpert’s BOM Manager allows you to upload your bill of materials and instantaneously run risk assessments on lifecycle, inventory, multi-sourcing, conflict minerals, and compliance.  

To learn more about these risk-alleviating tools for your product design, get a free trial to SiliconExpert’s BOM Manager.

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