If you are a budding entrepreneur who has a technology-oriented business idea in mind you will most definitely be better placed for commercial success if you can access some technological assistance, formal or informal, right from the outset.
Most of the technological firms that are now big industry names started out very small and developed over time to what they are now. There is therefore little reason to feel inept – as long as you have a feasible technology-oriented business idea and are ready to use some helpful advice you will have the right footing for success.
The quest for technological assistance should begin with you identifying a suitable facility that will give you the help you require. Look for a relevant facility in your vicinity that has a good supply of adequately trained personnel, the requisite equipment and supplies, and the appropriate teaching and demonstration facilities.
Some of the options that you can consider in your search include:
- University research and development departments
- Centers for management development and productivity
- Vocational training institutions
- Technical institutes and colleges
- Technology consultants
- Common service facility units
- Machinery and equipment suppliers and distributors
A wide range of helpful information can be obtained from the listed facilities. This is bearing in mind that such technological institutions seek to help the small enterprise sector via the provision of testing and research facilities, general and research technological information, and general advice. The technology-oriented business idea assistance and services you stand to get here include:
Help with the upgrading of your designs to the current standards of productivity, quality and commercial potential, adaptation of the design so that it suits new machines and techniques of production, and technology-oriented information/studies that will help you configure the design to befit special customer requirements.
Hands-on advice on the usage of materials, the relevant machinery and auxiliary equipment, how to use new machine models, recommended methods and techniques of planning, production and control, how to assess or conduct quality control for raw materials, issues about works in progress and finished goods, how to set and enforce maintenance schedules, about repair work, the control and recording of machine/equipment performance, and issues of procurement and purchasing procedures, cost control and inventory control.
3. Service Faciltiy
Access to common service facilities, the most common being: quality control and testing of raw materials, facilities for the manufacture, maintenance and repair of tools and auxiliary equipment, access to jigs, dies, and facilities for pressing, forging and molding, and quality control for semi-finished and finished products.
4. Workshops and Labs
Access to specialized workshops and laboratories for activities as diverse as electroplating, textile testing, galvanizing, heat treatment, etc.
- The possibility to lease and/or rent specialized machinery and equipment to help you accomplish one-off jobs.
- Help with conducting industrial research and quality control tests for both raw materials and new products.
- Access to facilities for general maintenance and repair.
- Access to information collection and dissemination services that are specifically oriented for technology-oriented business ideas and small enterprises.