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Made in the UK: Why outsourcing withing the UK is making a comeback

You might think that outsourcing overseas is the right way to go, but savvy businesses are now choosing suppliers closer to home. Find out why you should work with a UK manufacturer instead.

Competitive pricing

With overseas wages going up year on year, offshore outsourcing is no longer a more cost effective route than onshore. Labour costs in the Far East have soared and as the economy continues to grow, other costs are likely to as well, pushing outsourcing prices up further.

Working with a UK partner reduces many of the hidden costs of outsourcing overseas, such as transportation, repairs and project management. Returning parts in need of repair can be prohibitively expensive, whereas having them fixed by a UK supplier is much more feasible. Sharing the same time zone helps reduce the time and money spent on the day to day running of a project, as communication can happen more quickly.

“Having worked with Steelplan for about a year to produce a new range of precision sheet metal components for our third generation machine, we cannot speak highly enough of their attention to detail, sensible pricing and on time delivery. Without doubt Steelplan’s attitude to quality makes our product easier to produce.” – World leading UK manufacturing experts of foil and hologram security equipment.

Simplicity and flexibility

The logistics involved with getting contracts set up and work underway is much simpler with an onshore supplier. Project management and quality assurance are easier too, thanks to closer proximity and ease of communication.

In a dynamic market, you need to be able to work flexibly and a more local partner can help you do that. Adjustments to product designs or delivery schedules can be discussed and implemented quickly – something which overseas manufacturers are not typically able to promise.

Geography will become particularly important should an event occur that could cause a delay. If there’s a power outage or extreme weather that could affect your schedule, you need to know straight away. Time differences, communications limitations and weaker client-supplier relations can have a domino effect. Completion dates, shipping and delivery can get knocked back, leading to a loss of revenue for you. With a UK partner, this risk is significantly reduced, thanks to better opportunities for close working relationships and staying in touch.

“The flexibility and technical expertise shown by Steelplan makes the decision to continue to manufacture our products in the UK a very easy one to make. New product introduction would not be possible via any other route.” – Lighting control manufacturer, UK

Stronger relationships

Behind every good outsourcing contract is a good relationship between clients and suppliers. Outsourcing within the UK makes it easier to build bonds with your supplier that are more difficult to achieve with contacts in other parts of the world. You can physically meet with one another, see work in action, and keep an eye on quality.

Partnering with a UK supplier also removes the frustrations that can be caused by time zone and language differences. One of the key pitfalls of an outsourcing relationship is poor communication, so by removing these barriers and selecting an onshore manufacturer, you can help reduce that risk.

At Steelplan Products, all of our manufacturing takes place in the UK, making it easier for you to visit our premises and meet our team. We build strong relationships with our clients to ensure that whether we’re servicing short runs or large ongoing orders, you get exactly what you need.

At Steelplan Products, we do things differently. We believe in forming strong relationships with our clients, whether we’re servicing short runs or large ongoing orders. All of our manufacturing takes place in the UK, making it easier for you to visit our premises and meet with our team.

To find out more about using Steelplan Products as your outsource partner, call us on 01442 248 565 or visit

“I have been working with Steelplan since 2008. The technical engineering expertise is superb, Steelplan have developed my ideas into an entire product range. They consistently deliver high quality products and service that you will only find in a UK-based manufacturer.” – Vehicle storage manufacturer, UK

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