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How to Keep Your PCB Design Within Budget

A big part of completing a successful PCB design is making sure the project comes in on budget. Here's how you achieve it! Read ON
PCB Design Within Budget
Sure, you can create something incredible, but if you’ve gone way over budget then there is that much more riding on the success of the design. Not only that, but the client it has been created for is going to be less than happy at the final cost. So how can you manage to keep your PCB design on budget without having to make any sacrifices to quality? Here are some tips you can use.

Discuss the Project in Full with the Client First

Instead of just taking a project and running with it, it's very important to discuss the client’s expectations and budget before even taking on a project. You need to know what they are willing to spend, and what they want for that in order for you to figure out if you can make it possible. If you don't think you can stay within budget, it's important you state just that. They client may be willing to expand the budget, or it just may not be a good fit for you in the end.

Having an honest and open conversation with the client before the project begins can save you from a lot of hassle later on.

Use Effective Software

Another way to ensure you stay within budget is to be using efficient and effective software, such as the circuit board design software through Altium, which provides one database that integrates electrical and mechanical view, preventing people from having to spend extra money on extra software. Using the right software from the start can save you time and hassle, which ends up saving money or at least staying within the budget. Altium excels at offering state-of-the-art tools and features that allow you to make next-generation electronic designs possible.

Make Sure You Are Communicating Throughout

While communication may not seem like something that would affect the budget, at the end of the day it can have a fairly significant impact on it. The design team needs to be in constant communication with each other, and then the team lead needs to be able to talk with the client on a regular basis. Constant communication keeps everyone on the same page, and it allows for early detection of problems before they balloon out of control.

PCB Design Within Budget Make Sure Tests are Performed on Prototypes

Waiting until you have the finished product before you in order to perform tests is never a good idea. This could result in some very costly last minute changes that totally throw the budget out of whack.
Instead prototypes should be developed as early as possible so that issues and problems can be detected and remedied and mistakes can be avoided. Once the changes are made, new prototypes should be made and tested again.

The Budget Should be a Primary Concern

As a PCB designer it’s your job to not only provide the client with an ideal design, but to do so within the agreed upon budget. These tips will help you do just that, so that both you and the client are happy with the final result.
Have you been a part of PCB Design team or known friends who are? What are the experiences around budgeting? Share it with our readers in the comments below. Let's help everyone stay inspired to budget it right each time they are on a project for PCB Design.

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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 20th November 2017.

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