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Xometry Premium Partner

APW

Plastic
Joined
Mar 1, 2022
Hi all,
I know how most feel about Xometry so I ask this question hoping I don't get jumped by everyone.
Anyone on here a premium partner with xometry? If so, can you give some detail on how things changed on the job board once you reached this level?
 
No, no fee but I need to have a quality management system in place and they want a virtual tour of the shop.
 
Wow!

Any tips on hos to wring that much money out of Xometry? Seems like everyone else here doesn't have nearly the same experience.
 
Its probably because I am a Xom schill. Or I am that AS9100D guy or some other bullshit. I can't tell you why other people have struggled with Xom. All I know is that I have done everything I could to foster a great relationship with them. I made contacts and built friendships and trust with everyone there I possibly could. I made myself critical to their business operation. I opened my doors and let Xom spend weeks upon weeks here in my shop on critical projects. I have had multiple customers of theirs visit my shop with them to help them grow their business with me, and with their entire network. I spend 10ish hours per week in meetings and on the phone helping them with DFM, quoting, customer calls, and manufacturing questions. I have spent 5 years building a relationship of trust and integrity with them. In turn I get as much good profit work as I can take, and I get paid on time. They provide a lot of other intangibles to us also and I have fantastic working relationships with people all over Xom's rank and file, all the way through upper management. Because I fostered it, treated it with care, and don't take it for granted.

They are a customer. Their goal is to maximize their own profits, same as every other customer. If you don't like working with them, then don't. I also never saw the point in bad mouthing any customer. I have had plenty of bad customers, but its not information I would ever share on a public forum of any sort. If you want to work with them, then realize that you will have to treat them like they are a customer who is important to you. At the end of the day Xom is full of real people who are just doing their job to earn a paycheck. Find a way to make their job easier, and they will reward you.
 
Man, you had the opposite experience with Xometry that I did.

I would strongly recommend against working for Xometry, but that's a dead horse that I don't care to waste anymore time on.
 
I think Nate's experiences might also be from a ground floor sort of opportunity that might not be available to the average shop that lines up for Xometry work, at least not any more.

@Fal Grunt, can you elaborate on your specific bad experiences with Xometry? It's only fair to get the details from both sides of the spectrum.
 
I think Nate's experiences might also be from a ground floor sort of opportunity that might not be available to the average shop that lines up for Xometry work, at least not any more.

@Fal Grunt, can you elaborate on your specific bad experiences with Xometry? It's only fair to get the details from both sides of the spectrum.

I think, and he can correct me if I am wrong, Nate works for a shop that is a crew of guys. His job is to work with customers. If your full time job is working with customers, and you have a group of people doing the work, it is a totally different experience.

If you want detail, there are numerous posts by me in several threads. In short, Xometry was a disaster to try and work with. They were less than honest about many things, contradictory in others. You supposedly have a "point of contact", in the several months I was trying Xometry, I never spoke to the same person twice. Not one of the people knew anything about manufacturing, tolerances, machining, or actually making the parts. One phone call, I couldn't hear the representative because of the noise in the background. After I repeatedly asked about it, he admitted that he was in his dorm lobby playing cards, or maybe he was at a party, I forget, its in one of my posts.

Their job board I found out is not a "job board", but a "bid board". The prices offered have an enormous disparity between people. I posted at length about this in another thread where another forum member and I compared prices. His prices were 1/3 to 1/2 what mine were, and mine were still way too low to do the job. When I spoke with someone at Xomerty about it, this person said very few people that take the jobs off the boards, takes it for the offered price, most submit an offer and then Xometry takes the best offers to the customer.

One job I wanted to take because it fit right in my abilities prompted a call to ask some questions. They said they would call back with answers. Second person calls back and asks what can they do for me. I repeat the questions. Third person calls back and asks what can they do for me. I repeat the questions. Fourth person calls back and asks what can they do for me.

Another job I believe I posted at length about in another thread was a fairly simple part, and one I would actually make money on, but the lead time was too short. I called and explained that the part would require special form tooling, which would take a week or more to manufacture, but I would do the job. They went on to ask if I could do it some other way, to which I said no, it requires form tooling, to which they said they would wait for someone with a 5 axis to do it. I explained that while a 5 axis would make the job easier, you couldn't make the part without form tooling. Then the guy says, form tooling isn't necessary just make it close.

I have no doubt that Nate and the business he works for is on a whole different level compared to what I saw. I genuinely believe that I gave Xometry the same, if not better, treatment than I give the rest of my new customers. However, the HOURS that I spent trying to work with them, coupled with the absurdly low prices, meant it simply was not worth the time.
 
That sounds frustrating. Looking at their Glassdoor profile, it seems that Xometery is having some internal personnel issues and management problems that are leading to high turnover.
 
I think Nate's experiences might also be from a ground floor sort of opportunity that might not be available to the average shop that lines up for Xometry work, at least not any more.

@Fal Grunt, can you elaborate on your specific bad experiences with Xometry? It's only fair to get the details from both sides of the spectrum.
I have had a very similar experience to @nateacox - It's been about 5 years and I feel I've built a great relationship with the few I speak to regularly.
I think, and he can correct me if I am wrong, Nate works for a shop that is a crew of guys. His job is to work with customers. If your full time job is working with customers, and you have a group of people doing the work, it is a totally different experience.

If you want detail, there are numerous posts by me in several threads. In short, Xometry was a disaster to try and work with. They were less than honest about many things, contradictory in others. You supposedly have a "point of contact", in the several months I was trying Xometry, I never spoke to the same person twice. Not one of the people knew anything about manufacturing, tolerances, machining, or actually making the parts. One phone call, I couldn't hear the representative because of the noise in the background. After I repeatedly asked about it, he admitted that he was in his dorm lobby playing cards, or maybe he was at a party, I forget, its in one of my posts.

Their job board I found out is not a "job board", but a "bid board". The prices offered have an enormous disparity between people. I posted at length about this in another thread where another forum member and I compared prices. His prices were 1/3 to 1/2 what mine were, and mine were still way too low to do the job. When I spoke with someone at Xomerty about it, this person said very few people that take the jobs off the boards, takes it for the offered price, most submit an offer and then Xometry takes the best offers to the customer.

One job I wanted to take because it fit right in my abilities prompted a call to ask some questions. They said they would call back with answers. Second person calls back and asks what can they do for me. I repeat the questions. Third person calls back and asks what can they do for me. I repeat the questions. Fourth person calls back and asks what can they do for me.

Another job I believe I posted at length about in another thread was a fairly simple part, and one I would actually make money on, but the lead time was too short. I called and explained that the part would require special form tooling, which would take a week or more to manufacture, but I would do the job. They went on to ask if I could do it some other way, to which I said no, it requires form tooling, to which they said they would wait for someone with a 5 axis to do it. I explained that while a 5 axis would make the job easier, you couldn't make the part without form tooling. Then the guy says, form tooling isn't necessary just make it close.

I have no doubt that Nate and the business he works for is on a whole different level compared to what I saw. I genuinely believe that I gave Xometry the same, if not better, treatment than I give the rest of my new customers. However, the HOURS that I spent trying to work with them, coupled with the absurdly low prices, meant it simply was not worth the time.
@Fal Grunt I believe @nateacox owns his own business and is not working for a shop.

I have a few points of contact, 4-5 depending on what the topic is but it's always the same people for me.

As far as the job board, it is what it is, sometimes its great, sometimes its not, that's why you have the ability to leave feedback. A lot of these jobs are being auto quoted through their online system, it's not perfect, it will miss things. I miss things looking at prints and models from direct customers when I am quoting. I just had one, I missed an o-ring groove, I saw it as a simple slot feature but once I started programming I grabbed a surface and realized it was an o-ring feature, a tool I didn't have in stock. This is where you need to make connections, I can have a custom tool made locally in 1-2 days for almost the same cost as a Harvey Tool. Same with material, I've build a relationship with a few vendors, I can typically get plate stock material cut next day. These things help with some of the short lead times.

There is a lot of manufacturing companies that will have employees that don't know much about machining, or anything about making parts, especially larger companies. I have a few customers that have buyers/purchasers that couldn't even tell you what a cnc machine is. And they are my main point of contact, if I have questions they can't answer, they have to find the answer from an engineer or someone that knows. I worked for a company about 7 years ago, our largest customer was LM and it took minimum 3 days to get a response on any manufacturing question cause all the point of contacts had no idea.

Sourcing companies aren't for everyone or every shop, Xometry is not the first and only sourcing company doing what they do, others have been around for a long time and I can only imagine they'll be more.
 
Sure, Xometry clearly works, as have been discussed in other threads. People who have a gold plater next door who can do a 24 hr turn around will be able to do a lot of work for Xometry.

And yes, I know that many people in manufacturing don’t know anything about manufacturing. However my experience is that most customers, good and bad, can at least tell you yes or no, or give you to someone who can answer the questions. With Xometry it ultimately came down to no one wanted to take responsibility for anything. I have customers that literally cannot express what they need made. I did a job last week that the guy handed me two parts and said we need this to fit this. We don’t know what either of them are. And these guys are a billion dollar international company.

For me, I can get the steel next day, and I can (if I pay expedite) get my cutter in 2 days. So I get my $100 worth of steel, and I get my $400 cutter, and with a 2 day lead time I get started on my $600 Xometry job, needing to ship out the same day the tool is received. Hopefully the tool makes it through the 10pcs. And the UPS store is still open.

I don’t know how you guys do it, but hats off to you for your success. You are far better machinists and business owners than I. And I mean that genuinely, there were countless jobs, like 95% of them that the material, tooling, and post processing cost more than the job. I just couldn’t figure out how to make that math work.
 
Sure, Xometry clearly works, as have been discussed in other threads. People who have a gold plater next door who can do a 24 hr turn around will be able to do a lot of work for Xometry.

And yes, I know that many people in manufacturing don’t know anything about manufacturing. However my experience is that most customers, good and bad, can at least tell you yes or no, or give you to someone who can answer the questions. With Xometry it ultimately came down to no one wanted to take responsibility for anything. I have customers that literally cannot express what they need made. I did a job last week that the guy handed me two parts and said we need this to fit this. We don’t know what either of them are. And these guys are a billion dollar international company.

For me, I can get the steel next day, and I can (if I pay expedite) get my cutter in 2 days. So I get my $100 worth of steel, and I get my $400 cutter, and with a 2 day lead time I get started on my $600 Xometry job, needing to ship out the same day the tool is received. Hopefully the tool makes it through the 10pcs. And the UPS store is still open.

I don’t know how you guys do it, but hats off to you for your success. You are far better machinists and business owners than I. And I mean that genuinely, there were countless jobs, like 95% of them that the material, tooling, and post processing cost more than the job. I just couldn’t figure out how to make that math work.
There's going to be jobs like that across the board with these sourcing companies and direct customers, I have direct customers that have given price points and due dates that I can't do but they have a shop that has them cutters and material in stock.

I've had jobs with direct customers that if I had to buy a odd size tool whether it be an o ring cutter, key seat cutter, whatever it may be, I'd lose money, but I have a lot of that odd stuff that I've factored into jobs over the years. So when I have say a that same $600 job that comes around that YOU would have to spend $400 on a cutter for, I already have it, I've used it for 3-4 jobs already, it's more than paid for itself.

And you NEVER buy one cutter, it sucks having to buy multiples of something but it is what it is. I had a job I needed a .025" Harvey end mill, I bought 6, and only needed one!

Yea, I see them, the jobs that are quoted too low, but again, most them are automated quotes and certain "special" tooling can easily be missed. I've done it plenty of times quoting for my customers, miss something and have to order a tool and that's my loss. That's unfortunately our business, can't win them all.

If you have a good customer that understands, some are willing to adjust PO's if you reach out, Xometry will as well, I've done it, sent in an email - sorry I totally missed this and need to spend X on X and they've adjusted the PO with no problem. About 3 months ago I took a job without waiting for a insert quote, I assumed they'd be around $200....nope, came in at $1200, they adjusted the PO no questions asked. I have a current rush job for a local customer, I got burned by material supplier this time, they fell 6 days behind, I had to cancel and go with another vendor and same day expedite, let the customer know what was going on and they offered to adjust the PO accordingly for the material price increase difference and expedite.

Communication is key with any and all customers.
 
Your absolutely right, but your 100% proving my point why Xometry is terrible. They don't communicate or mis communicate. It took on average (I just looked at my emails) 4 to 7 days to receive a response via email. Phone calls varied, but to get an actual response, not a useless phone call, usually took longer than the "expiration" time. Jobs that typically expired in 24 hrs and had a 2 day lead time. I don't think I ever saw a job on the job board with more than a 2 day lead time. And yes, direct customers have unrealistic expectations as well. Every one of them I have worked with communicates. When you explain the complexities or issues, typically they adjust accordingly. Xometry every single time said, that's the job. So to pass on work, because they are inflexible, to then find out they are flexible for some people is not what I would consider a good customer. One set of standards for you, but a different set for me?

I am quite confident, the job in question, was not a cutter you would have in stock. Unless they are making O rings that are inverted U's in a Z profile down the length of the part now days..... I am 100% confident, even if you had the cutter in stock, you would not have done the job. If I had run the job before, had fixtures and tooling loaded in the machine, I wouldn't have done that job for $600. Based on comparing prices with other people on the board, it is likely that the shop that took that job was paid closer to $2k.

I find the PO aspect you mentioned interesting, because when I was "on boarded" I specifically asked that question, and was told, the PO price is the PO price, they would not be adjusted for any reason. Period. So, another example, I had one set of rules, and you have a different set of rules.

It seems to me that Xometry has a serious communication issue if they are telling some people one set of rules, and a different set for others. Maybe this is part of their tiered structure? You have to loose money on a certain number of jobs before you are elevated to where you get special treatment outside the rules? Make monthly payments and then you are allowed special privileges?

Does this happen with your direct customers? If I found out one of my direct customers was having me quote work against another shop that they gave different tolerances, lead times, and payment terms, that gave the other shop advantageous treatment to the tune of thousands of dollars, I would have some serious questions as to whether I would continue doing work for them.

Does this happen on a daily basis in our industry, absolutely, but that doesn't mean I have to accept it or be a party to it.
 
Your absolutely right, but your 100% proving my point why Xometry is terrible. They don't communicate or mis communicate. It took on average (I just looked at my emails) 4 to 7 days to receive a response via email. Phone calls varied, but to get an actual response, not a useless phone call, usually took longer than the "expiration" time. Jobs that typically expired in 24 hrs and had a 2 day lead time. I don't think I ever saw a job on the job board with more than a 2 day lead time. And yes, direct customers have unrealistic expectations as well. Every one of them I have worked with communicates. When you explain the complexities or issues, typically they adjust accordingly. Xometry every single time said, that's the job. So to pass on work, because they are inflexible, to then find out they are flexible for some people is not what I would consider a good customer. One set of standards for you, but a different set for me?

I am quite confident, the job in question, was not a cutter you would have in stock. Unless they are making O rings that are inverted U's in a Z profile down the length of the part now days..... I am 100% confident, even if you had the cutter in stock, you would not have done the job. If I had run the job before, had fixtures and tooling loaded in the machine, I wouldn't have done that job for $600. Based on comparing prices with other people on the board, it is likely that the shop that took that job was paid closer to $2k.

I find the PO aspect you mentioned interesting, because when I was "on boarded" I specifically asked that question, and was told, the PO price is the PO price, they would not be adjusted for any reason. Period. So, another example, I had one set of rules, and you have a different set of rules.

It seems to me that Xometry has a serious communication issue if they are telling some people one set of rules, and a different set for others. Maybe this is part of their tiered structure? You have to loose money on a certain number of jobs before you are elevated to where you get special treatment outside the rules? Make monthly payments and then you are allowed special privileges?

Does this happen with your direct customers? If I found out one of my direct customers was having me quote work against another shop that they gave different tolerances, lead times, and payment terms, that gave the other shop advantageous treatment to the tune of thousands of dollars, I would have some serious questions as to whether I would continue doing work for them.

Does this happen on a daily basis in our industry, absolutely, but that doesn't mean I have to accept it or be a party to it.
You are 100% right, you do not have to accept it or be party to it.

Xometry's response time is typically terrible, I can agree to that! I don't see very many 2 day lead time jobs, I typically see 3-4 weeks, are there shorter lead times, yes, with terrible pricing, of course there is.

I don't take very many low paying jobs, so a $600 job I would more than likely pass on it, occasionally I do, when I'm bored and have an open machine and my other machine has a long cycle time, and if I have material and tooling in stock I may grab a few jobs under $600 that I can bang out in a day, cause to me if my second machine is sitting and my other has a 3-4 hour cycle time and I can bang out 2-3 $4-500 jobs in a day, that's an easy $1500.

I wasn't necessarily referring to your exact $600 job, it was more of a in general comparison to shops stocking certain tools that a lot don't and/or having a lot of a specific tools some don't. Another example would be insert tools, I have just about every insert tool from tangless and tanged along with every STI thread gage, including Keensert install tools, if someone was to take a job with multiple, they get expensive real fast, I've had jobs that require 6 different insert sizes, the insert tools alone would come close to $1000 now add in STI thread gages you could be pushing $1500-2000 fast for one job.

I don't know about different tolerances, I've never come across that. But there's a tier system, I've heard things are different for newer Partners in recent years, could be a major factor. But there are a lot of large medical and aerospace companies that run tier systems no different, when you first become a vendor you are at the bottom, you need to prove your shop and capabilities. No company wants to give a random shop a $20k PO to find out 1-2 weeks later they can't even accomplish the job, need to prove what you are capable of, any shop can have the capability but doesn't mean they have the experience.

I acquired a new customer, locally, last December. First meeting they told me, the first few months I would get the bottom of the barrel work, with short lead times and low paying but after so many jobs of proving my capabilities, quality and being able to hit due dates I would move up tiers, in about 45 days they quit having me quote work all together and started sending me PO's with $0 and pre determined due dates, with the understanding I would bill T&M and they would cover any expediting cost, and they informed if I took advantage of it I would go back to quoting jobs and competing against other shops that are quoting.

Also people need to realize, not every machine shop has the same overhead, not every shop needs to clear $150-200/hr, or whatever it may be. I am a home shop with a VF2SS, VF3SS, EC400PP and SL20, I have very little overhead and can be very competitive if needed. If I became desperate for work, I could easily quote at $50-75/hr and be perfectly well off.
 
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If I became desperate for work, I could easily quote at $50-75/hr and be perfectly well off.

You hit the nail on the head right there IME. Someone out of the 100's of shops Xometry has in their pool is desperate for work, so they have no reason to boost prices as long as they can get Mr Desperate to see the job offer.

You and Nate are in a completely different category. Your description of what you see on your job board is a zillion miles away from what I see. I've been with them since 2020, and have done 141 jobs (I was Mr Desperate during COVID :nutter:) with a 100% Quality rating . 90% of the jobs I now see are 2-10 day turnaround, wacky, practically unmachinable features, and anodize or harden or powdercoat needed, within that 2-10 days.

Regards.

Mike
 
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You hit the nail on the head right there IME. Someone out of the 100's of shops Xometry has in their pool is desperate for work, so they have no reason to boost prices as long as they can get Mr Desperate to see the job offer.

You and Nate are in a completely different category. Your description of what you see on your job board is a zillion miles away from what I see. I've been with them since 2020, and have done 141 jobs (I was Mr Desperate during COVID :nutter:) with a 100% Quality rating . 90% of the jobs I now see are 2-10 day turnaround, wacky, practically unmachinable features, and anodize or harden or powdercoat needed, within that 2-10 days.

Regards.

Mike
I wouldn't classify all or every one of these shops as "desperate" though, there are probably some out there. But I was getting more at there are a lot of shops that don't need to make a high hourly rate, a lot of small shops, guys that have one machine in their attached garage and run a few parts a week in the evenings and weekends and making an extra $500-1000/week is supplemental income supporting a hobby. Or shops that can have a guy run 2 machines and one at $75/hr or lower paying jobs to keep employees busy.

If the economy, manufacturing took a hit, I could easily lower my rates, but the shops that have machine payments, building leases or payments, they have numbers they have to hit. On average I'm at about $200/hr.

About 10 years ago I had a customer I would quote work for, I would get maybe 1 out of 10 quotes, I quit doing work for them all together, they actually came back to me about 2 years ago and I found out I was quoting against a retired machinist running all their work out of a small shop at home. He wasn't in it to make money, he was bored and machining was a hobby and kept him occupied.
 
I always see these comments about shops making it a "race to the bottom", IMO our industry in general is a race to the bottom for the best price, there is no common denominator across the board when quoting. Especially when shops are quoting against shops across the country of all different sizes. I quote against shops that do what in a year in one month.

We could have the exact same hourly rate and estimate the same hours on a job but material alone could make or break it.

I just had some aluminum plates quoted last week.

1.) $2313.84
2.) $3764.44
3.) $6728.82

#1 is my preferred local supplier I typically use and it would be cut in 2-3 days standard. 2 & 3 are out of state and would be 7-10 days. If you or anyone is quoting against me and using #2 or #3. I'm beating you all day on material alone. From #1 to #3 a difference of $4414.98.

Just something to think about, when there are some jobs that material price seems high, there's some of us getting material for 1/3 to 1/2 the price. Obviously on a $600 job, it wouldn't amount to much but on a $15k job if someone is paying almost $4500 more for material alone, that's significant.
 
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I am the owner of a shop with 10 employees, 20 CNC machines, a workspace of 15,000 square feet, and we operate on a single shift. Our basic hourly rate for simple work on inexpensive materials is $100, and this rate can increase depending on the complexity of the job. Compared to businesses located in larger metropolitan areas or California, our operating costs are relatively lower.

Occasionally, we receive jobs from customers like Xom that generate lower profits. Generally, we take on these jobs during periods with available capacity, or to build goodwill with the customer, or even to secure multi-year contracts. We currently have a job for a local customer involving 400 pieces that runs on a 5-axis mill, paying us only $67 per hour. While the hourly rate is lower, the job runs for 16 hours per day, 6 days per week with minimal involvement from a machinist, and minimal tool usage. Additionally, the customer supplies the raw material and performs all secondary operations in-house, making this job a win for us, as it provides high utilization rates.

Regardless of the customer, working in this industry requires paying to play. Every hour spent interacting with customers, quoting jobs, updating projects, and waiting for responses is a cost. Paying for leads or a salesperson, reaching out to potential customers, providing tours of our shop, and even providing entertainment or prizes to customers are all costs associated with doing business. Furthermore, waiting to receive payments from customers is also a cost. Therefore, working with Xom incurs costs, just like working with any other customer, and I believe that the value gained from these costs justifies the expense.

I understand my job board looks very different then the majority of the people on here. But it didn't just magically start like that. I paid my dues, and did my time to cultivate the relationship with them. If you aren't interested in doing that, then don't.

If however you have a serious shop, legit equipment, and a track record of doing good work, feel free to PM me. I can put you in touch with the right people there to help get you aimed in the right direction with them. If you only have a tormach, or a 1998 VF2 and are a one man shop, please don't message me. If you don't have a good selection of measuring tools, or a quality manual then don't PM me.
 








 
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