The cost and quality model developed in this chapter can be used at the earliest possible time in design to develop an accurate estimate of quality and cost of new products and to help design and manufacturing engineers make tradeoffs in material and manufacturing equipment acquisition and selection.
The design of new electronic products can be partitioned effectively into modules, each comprising units or collections of PCBs, mechanical parts and assemblies, software, and special requirements such as hybrid integrated circuits. As described in earlier chapters, a quality assessment of the design of each part up to the completed product can be undertaken to determine the quality of the design and the proposed manufacturing plan. The results of this process will input into the quality and cost model.
The model can also be interconnected to a simulation of the current manufacturing process as it exists in equipment and work flow. The results of adding the new product to the factory can be shown clearly through the model. The manufacturing equipment can be reorganized for better work flow or new machines can be added and their impact on cost and quality shown. In addition, a cost-effective test strategy
can be developed from the quality attributes of design and manufacturing， as well as a strategy to most efficiently remove defects by using the various test equipment available, as was discussed in Chapter 4.
The cost and quality model can help company management keep abreast of how the new product is meeting its initial goals. This will guide the engineers in making the necessary adjustments in order to keep quality and cost at competitive levels.