We care about making music fun and accessible, that's what drives us to make the products we do – but we’re also serious about doing it right.
Here we share five ways we make sure the instruments that reach students, teachers, parents and children worldwide are of the highest standard...
1. They're high quality
Unfortunately, when we were developing our instruments, we found that the quality standards of musical instruments in our price range were very low. Just like the phone you are probably reading this blog on, we make products in China - and also in the UK. However, we don’t use instrument companies to make our instruments but rather we choose to use automotive manufacturers who have quality regimes and practices which are much more robust.
This is why we are recognised for outstanding quality – our suppliers work to much higher standards. To make extra sure, we have our own team of people such as John, who inspects every shipment to over 120 pre-delivery quality checks – just like if you were buying a new car!
We don’t just check our instruments during production either – we also involve professional musicians in testing them once they come off the production line, we know what we are aiming for, but by getting someone independent to put them through their paces, we can be sure they are hitting the standard we desire.
What are the safety standards for musical instruments? There are actually very few safety standards and that’s because historically (and in some cases still today) they use a mixture of very complex metals and compounds in production.
We didn’t feel that was good enough, so we choose to voluntarily test products on a regular basis to make sure they are safe; production samples of every instrument are independently tested to the toughest EU Reach and US Prop 65 standards - if they don't achieve these standards they don't pass go!
We use plastic materials for our instruments that are used in everyday household products (not single-use plastic, more of that later). What you might not realise is that we also include this antimicrobial technology that kills off bacteria.
Using this technology our instruments resist the growth of microbes including bacteria, making them the most hygienic choice. As saliva moves through the instruments during play this is really beneficial as it prevents the instruments from developing bad odours, provides added protection and helps your instrument last even longer.
The great benefit of being passionate about your business is that you care about every detail – your employees, your customers and your suppliers.
We work with one of the best sourcing companies in the business ET2C, an IS9001-accredited business (that work for the likes of Boots, Halford, and more) to ensure our supply chain is ethically and morally secure. This means our staff and the staff of our suppliers are employed within the local laws and legislation and we are confident in this because they are independently inspected and audited annually.
Finally, the environment! There has been a lot of discussion about plastics and the environment. We have been thinking about this throughout our journey – for example, one of the reasons why the pBone box is wedge-shaped is to save space in shipping and therefore reduce CO2 emissions.
Almost all the parts of our instruments are made from ABS plastic which is recyclable – but we need to do better in explaining that. Our pBones were only launched in 2010, and many of those instruments are still in use across the world; they are really robust and can easily be repaired or even up-cycled.
Going forward, we are going to explain exactly how to recycle our instruments, how they use a lot less energy and omissions in production than brass instruments, and even make instruments out of recycled plastics.
Experienced in marketing and PR, Sophie loves connecting with people through strategic communications and is responsible for Governance360’s marketing strategy, brand and content. An advocate of lifelong learning, in late 2020 Sophie completed the Marketing Week Mini MBA with Mark Ritson.
Graduating from Durham University with a BA in Theology, Sophie worked in events and communications, before moving into the events industry. With a sideways move into marketing for a busy agency, she has since gained over 14 years’ experience through a variety of industries and roles. Most recently she spent two years at Queen’s Award for Innovation winner Warwick Music as Marketing Manager before starting her marketing consultancy, Happy Marketer Ltd in 2021 alongside her work at Governance360.