October 17, 2012
Grove Gives an Update on our iPhone 5 Production Process
If you've ordered our iPhone 5 case and checked out the shipment date estimates, you'll know the lead time on the product takes a lot of patience. We're working around the clock to get each case finished and out the door, and we so appreciate our amazing customers that understand why we do what we do.
In our co-owner Ken’s words: “The heart of our business is that we make our own stuff. We design and build our own products.” We’ve been working hard at designing and implementing our new production process for the iPhone 5 case. It’s always challenging to see a product through from design to use, and a main challenge this time around is that we’re combining two different materials into one product. Luckily we have the machinery and talent to pull it off! “It all starts with the team,” says our production manager and designer Sean, “all of us who make the cases. Figuring out how to use the team to create the best product we can.”
If you’re designing and crafting products on a fast timeline like in the mobile phone industry, you’ve got to be up for a challenge. Our general manager, Galen, secretly relishes the little “headaches” that go along with production process design. “Even though it may seem simple,” he says that there’s a whole lot of research and development that goes on behind the scenes. Especially when working with a new material. He stands behind our commitment to “maintaining an attitude and drive of constant improvement.” Our production team knows first hand it takes teamwork and patience to figure out every detail - Sean says, “We need to fail a lot before we can succeed.” It takes mental and physical strength for this type of hands-on production, and our entire team is willing to go the extra mile and work overtime hours to reach our goals.
Innovation is a big part of our everyday process. Ken explains, “The fact is that we can make changes and improvements rapidly - because we do it ourselves!” Most production facilities will outsource a lot of work, but we do it all here in our little shop. From website photography, copy and programming, to filing all the holes in your iPhone Case, to sewing each stitch on your Felt Sleeve, we do it all. Challenge-wise, the new materials certainly make for increased complexity in production, according to everyone on production. Galen clarifies that “Ultimately, the goal is to create the best iPhone case we can for our customers, and with the new design, we think we've done that.” And that’s where the challenges pay off.
Ken states, “What’s really important is to have an open mind and constantly make our production and processes better.” Sean has other reasons for our hands-on methods though: “Our hands touch every case everyday, so when you use your phone it is like we are touching your face tenderly. If I stand still and quiet I can almost feel your voices in my hands...”
We appreciate our customers more than anything, and we couldn't exist without your patience and support! Thank you for enabling our vision. Weekly-updated shipment dates for the iPhone 5 are posted here.
Written by Mary Yajko. She is a Grove customer support rep and crazed blogger originally from upstate New York. She enjoys opened minds, uncontrollable fits of laughter, and large amounts of french fries with ketchup.