IDM is an environment where everyone contributes something important—and where anyone can do something amazing. We measure success in terms of relationships, and we work to build connections that last.

Douglas Laube
Founder, Sole Member
Kevin Hodge
Director of Operations
Jesse Sanchez
Senior Mechanical Engineer
Kristen Marple
Production Supervisor
Josh Laube
Systems Engineer
Anne Lewis
Quality Assurance
Marsha Schmoll
Nadia DuBell
Graphic Designer
Strategic Partners
Clients; In-house Teams; Industry Experts


As product development evolves, so does our perspective.

Product As Commodity
Product As Craft
1900 – 1930s
Product As Style

1930s – 1980

Product As Ideology
1930s – 1980
Product As Differentiator
1980 – 1990
Product As Brand

1984 – 1999

Product As Experience

1999 – 2006

Product As Opportunity

2007 – 2010

Product As Business Driver

2010 – 2019

Product As Relationship

Today and Beyond


What is IDM?

IDM is a new approach to product development. By combining strategy, industrial design/engineering, and manufacturing under one roof—informed by decades of knowledge, experience, and leadership—we can offer decision-makers something they can’t get through conventional means: a partner with a shared interest in creating impact from the income statement to the balance sheet.

Working with IDM, executives can create new revenue streams, add value that drives sales price, reduce bill-of-materials expenses and CoGS, increase margins through efficiencies in manufacturing, cut time-to-market, and deliver experiences that engage users like never before.

Is IDM a contract manufacturer?

No. IDM clients want a strategic partner to help them navigate the entire product development lifecycle — from business strategy and ideation through manufacturing and supply chain management.

Unlike contract manufacturers whose business interests are often at odds with those of their customers, only IDM contributes to a product’s success by inventing the right opportunity, designing with manufacturing in mind, and then making the product in-house. This allows IDM to build a quality product at a cost low enough for the customer to maximize their gross margin.

Does IDM offer industrial design?

There are no a la carte services at IDM. We engage with clients through every phase of product development from financial modeling to design and engineering all the way through to production and distribution.

Does IDM make prototypes?

While we do produce prototypes in-house as part of our integrated approach, IDM is not a prototyping shop. Instead, we use models, simulations, mockups, and other tools to answer questions, evaluate options, test solutions, and provide real-time insights throughout the development process.

What is integrated manufacturing, and why is it important?

Until recently, there’s been a huge chasm in product development between design/engineering and manufacturing. Business leaders have thrown tons of resources into that black hole, only to find their products couldn’t be produced as designed without major compromises to quality or untenable cost updates.

How did this happen? There are lots of contributing factors. Inexperienced designers with no understanding of engineering or manufacturing. Engineers making arbitrary decisions with little regard for the product strategy or the user experience. Manufacturers that are interested only in their margins. The process is chaotic and contentious by nature. Add in personalities, agendas, and distractions and it’s easy for organizations to lose sight of their goals.

Only strong leadership and a holistic approach can close these gaps and ensure the strategic vision is realized in the final product. IDM is built to do that. We bring disciplines together, embrace conflict, and advocate for the right solution—not simply the expedient one.

Does IDM develop software?

Our clients see IDM as stewards of their brand promise and of the product experience. That means not only designing a physical product—but also designing the interactions that happen between the user and that interface. It’s all connected, so we do whatever it takes to deliver a simple, engaging, integrated experience.

Does IDM contract with independent manufacturers?

No. We make what we design, and we design what we make. It’s the best way to maintain the product’s integrity, and it makes IDM an accountable partner with a real stake in the product’s success.

Is IDM Tech ISO 9001:2015 compliant?

Yes. IDM Tech is ISO 9001:2015 certified. We have documented our standards and consistently meet them. This allows us to put processes in place that are scalable, while also making adjustments when it is beneficial. ISO 9001:2015 certification means that IDM Tech clients are assured we do what we say we are going to do.

How do clients engage with IDM?

Leaders turn to IDM at the point where innovation becomes essential to their business models. They trust our insight and experience to help create new market opportunities, new revenue streams, and even cultural shifts within their organizations. When a prospective client approaches us with a concept, a design, or a set of engineering drawings, we take a step back and evaluate those elements against their strategy and goals. Sometimes, it means making a collective decision to reset with a renewed sense of purpose, focus, and direction.

How does IDM work with in-house product teams?

IDM provides perspective, expertise, and leadership that aligns internal stakeholders around a shared vision. We challenge rote thinking and traditional processes. We refuse to take “No” for an answer. Instead, we empower team members to explore alternative solutions and present options in the context of their impact on the product or the user experience. In doing so, we put decision-making power back in the hands of leadership—where it belongs. We expect and model a results-oriented, customer-focused, dynamic, fast-paced, and sometimes messy environment—but also one in which people are valued for their skills and contributions. In short, we act as an internal resource fully committed to the product experience.

Does IDM engage with strategic partners?

IDM is a small, nimble, and generalist organization by design. We believe in assembling the best possible teams of people to take on each unique challenge. So, we work closely with a number of resources in several disciplines—from research and ID to testing and tooling. This allows us to work where our clients need us most—focused on the big picture, navigating the process, managing the day-to-day, and delivering a meaningful product that reflects their strategy and vision.

Awards & Patents

These are acknowledgements of the teamwork, trust, and commitment required to successfully bring a product to market.

We share the credit with everyone involved.

Design Award logo
Good Design award logo
Reddot award Logo for the year 2020
International Design Excellence award logo
Red Dot Award: Biamp Room DSP
Red Dot Award: Biamp Desono EX Series
Red Dot Award: Biamp Vidi 250
Red Dot Award: Biamp NPX Paging Station Series
Good Design Award: Biamp Desono P6-SM Pendant Speaker
Good Design Award: Biamp Parlé TTM-TCM Microphones
Red Dot Award High Design Quality: Biamp Parlé TTM/TCM
Design Award: AMX X Series Panoramic Touch Panels
Dallas Society of Visual Communications (DSVC) Award of Excellence: Ignition Logo
Excellence in Design Award: iPod Alarm Clock (Gold EID Award)
Excellence in Design Award: RadioShack Vex Robotics Design System (Silver EID Award)
Good Buzz Award: RadioShack at CES for its Cinego Projector
International CES Award: RadioShack Cinego
Excellence in Design Award: Authentix SRX-1000 Surface Reader (First Place)
Innovations International CES Design & Engineering Showcase Award: Plus Vision Corp v3-131 Digital Projector
Excellence in Design: Products Authentix ISOTAG LSX 1000 Gas Reader (Runner Up)
International CES Award: Piano HE-3100
Dallas Chapter Summit Award: Douglas Laube (President, CEO), ISDA, CMG
Design of the Decade: LeapFrog Phonics Desk and Phonics Traveler (Silver Award)


D325,909Combined mobile cellular
D376,591Front panel for an electronic chassis
D390,138Inventory control probe
D390,111Inventory control collar
5798485Cabinet for housing electronic equip
6125287Wireless telephone having an improved user interface
D404,381Upright touch screen terminal
D416,002Enclosure for Electronic components
D409,164Enclosure for Electronic components
5997500Pneumatically operated veterinary pillet implanter
6119864Storage device to accommodate batteries of varying sizes
D430,865Telecommunication equipment pedestal
6321802Ice and Beverage Dispensing Apparatus
D436,101Telecommunication equipment pedestal
D446,207Wall-mounted home network unit
6560106Control panel assembly
6748458Modular input/output expsion system for an exteral computer
6675720Management system for multiple cables
D510,384Payment device
D497,911Reader for payment device
D488,156Reader for payment device
D487,894Reader for payment device
D497,636Payment device
D491,590Surface viewer
D501,493Surface reader
D503,353Gas reader
D494,182Tiltable Support for Touch Screen Controller
D494,176Tabletop mountable touch screen controller
D505,676Portable touch screen controller
D516,810Packaging for radio-controlled toy
D503,439Radio frequency toy controller
D530,670Connector assembly
D685,332Cable pass thru module
D664,513Wall display
D661,671Table display
D661,266Table display
D656,473Wall display
9310833Display device housing and form-fitted configuration
9280175Display device housing and form-fitted configuration
9923312Retractable cable and cable rewind
9309087Retractable cable and cable rewind
9629264Display device housing and form-fitted configuration
9529382Display device housing and form-fitted configuration
9425563Retractable cable and cable rewind
9553413Retractable cable and cable rewind
9836081Display device housing and form-fitted configuration
9680262Retractable cable and cable rewind


Sticky notes on a glass window
Person thinking while sitting on the ground
Person assembling a product
Picture of Doug Laube
Douglas Laube
Founder, Sole Member

Douglas Laube is here to save your product’s soul. As an unrelenting advocate for product experience, Doug tenaciously pushes through the inherent obstacles and constraints in design, engineering, and manufacturing. His global understanding of the product lifecycle means he can lead clients through its inevitable challenges—creating tradeoffs where others merely compromise. In the end, the product’s integrity not only remains intact but also shines through.

In IDM, Doug envisioned a new kind of product development company—one that drives innovation by inventing opportunities, designing immersive experiences, and making the products that create the greatest impact on our clients’ income statements. The IDM model is built on a working environment where everyone is empowered to step up, contribute, and add value.

Long-time colleague and friend Hidetaka describes Doug’s leadership this way: “Doug brings his head, heart, and hands to every project and every client relationship.” Put another way, when you work with Doug, you get the whole enchilada—like it or not.

Picture of Kevin Hodge
Kevin Hodge
Director of Operations

Kevin can solve anything. At least, that’s what his father told him. “Just take a step back and think it through,” Kevin says. Where there’s a problem, there’s a solution—and for Kevin, there’s the satisfaction of finding it.

Kevin provides the critical focus, discipline, and follow-through often lacking at conventional product design firms. His experience as a product engineer at Texas Instruments solidified his belief that product development is never linear. Instead, Kevin acts as a steward of the process and the product vision—allowing talented people to excel in their respective disciplines.

Today, Kevin makes sure that vision remains clear through research, design, engineering, and manufacturing. It’s not about making things easy—it’s about defining what the product requires to be successful.

Picture of Jesse Sanchez
Jesse Sanchez
Senior Mechanical Engineer

Jesse has tools on his person at all times. No, seriously. Measuring tools, gauges, pens… and not just any pens, but pens with levels, scales, and screwdrivers hidden inside. And don’t get him started on flashlights. In other words, Jesse is always ready to help.

Jesse not only solves design and engineering problems for clients, but also designs, builds, and installs all things production-related for IDM. His experiences in production at Frito-Lay and in product development at Lennox instilled his “whatever it takes” attitude and approach. “It’s just part of engineering that sometimes you not only have to design but also make and install things,” he says.

The same goes for breaking things. In fact, when you visit IDM, there’s a good chance you’ll find Jesse out in the shop hitting a perfectly good product with a hammer—trying to learn what might make it fail now, so it doesn’t happen later.

Picture of Kristen Marple
Kristen Marple
Production Supervisor

Kristen is one step ahead of everyone else. She gets to work by 6:00 a.m. and makes sure the production team has everything they need. Her goal is to stay just one step ahead of every project. Sometimes that means jumping in and working on the line. No matter what, it means keeping up with schedules, processes, timelines, and deadlines.

Kristen met Doug’s wife Lori Laube when the two worked together in production at Honeywell. Years later, in 2015, Doug was looking for some “quick and quality help” and remembered how much Lori had admired Kristen’s work ethic. So, he called Kristen in for a contract gig—and she never left. “I don’t know what happened. I couldn’t get away,” she says. “It’s just a great place to work.”

Kristen shows her appreciation by scratch-baking birthday cakes for our team and by occasionally treating us to breakfast. We just have to get here early.

Picture of Josh Laube
Josh Laube
Systems Engineer

Josh will take anything apart, especially if it’s already broken. “What’s the harm?” he says. “It already doesn’t work. And even if I can’t fix it, I can figure out why it broke in the first place.” This philosophy has served him well—whether he’s reverse engineering a circuit board or restoring a vintage Alfa Romeo.

That’s because Josh is a prototypical engineer—curious about the way things work and determined to make them work better. On any given day, Josh might be working on a CAD model, building a prototype, laying out a PCB, or sitting in on the kickoff of a new project. However, his claim to fame might be fabricating an automated 3-axis glue dispenser out of an old hobbyist CNC.

His M.S. in Systems Engineering and Management gives Josh a broad understanding of both product development and business management—enough to know that just because something works doesn’t mean it can’t work more efficiently.

Picture of Anne Lewis
Anne Lewis
Quality Assurance

Anne likes things neat and tidy. As an avid gardener, she knows a pristine landscape doesn’t happen by chance—there’s always someone pruning, watering, and tending to the details. Anne is that person for IDM. “I shape things,” she says, “often behind the scenes, to make sure we deliver what we promise.”

At IDM, Anne works to “make excellence a habit” by overseeing our ISO certification program. She also helps cultivate a culture focused on customer satisfaction—whether that “customer” is internal or external. With her self-described “relentless smile” and what Frank Lloyd Wright calls “an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen,” Anne keeps us alert, on our toes, and bringing our very best each day. “I love working with bright people who are passionate about what they do,” she says.

When she’s not digging in the dirt, you might find Anne nurturing her love of reading at the local library.

Picture of Marsha Schmoll
Marsha Schmoll

Marsha’s title should be “Accountant, etc.”. Since 2000, she’s juggled a combination of responsibilities—first at Ignition, and then at IDM—including accounting, payroll, human resources, office management, facilities, and “managing Doug.”

Marsha is exactly what a business leader looks for in an accountant: Focused. Exacting. Level-headed. And did we mention brilliant and charming? Because she also makes sure our many talented partners—including web developers, graphic designers, and copywriters—are well taken care of.

If there’s anything we need, Marsha can get it for us—as long as we remember the purchase order.

Picture of Nadia DuBell
Nadia DuBell
Graphic Designer

Nadia makes art to justify buying art supplies. Okay, that’s not entirely true. She loves digital design, and she enjoys hand-lettering and calligraphy in her spare time. So, maybe it’s more like 50% “appreciates all things design” and 50% “obsessed with everything art.”

Like any good design-thinker, Nadia is dedicated to honing her craft. Whether she’s reading up on UX/UI, diving into Adobe Xd, or mastering the brush pen, she’s always exploring new tools. That way, when she comes up with a solution to a client’s design challenge, she has the skills to make it happen.

Ask Nadia to name the best aspect of IDM culture, and she’ll tell you it’s collaborating with colleagues and partners—taking creative risks that lead to outstanding solutions. When you experience her quiet demeanor, you’ll know that’s high praise indeed.

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Product as Commodity


The Industrial Revolution and mass production in Europe gave rise to a middle-class consumer culture and spawned countless new products. This proliferation of machine-made objects sparked reactions from artisans and social reformers alike. In 1851, artists Owen Jones and Richard Redgrave organized the Great Exhibition and called attention to products they considered “excessively ornate… and ignorant of the qualities of the materials used.” Jones wrote, “Ornament must be secondary to the thing designed”—an idea that became integral to design thinking when architect Louis Sullivan coined the phrase, “Form follows function.”
In the latter half of the 19th Century, textile designer William Morris began experimenting with furniture-making and exploring the relationship between the craftsman and the machine.
Morris advanced the idea that the designer should be personally involved in manufacturing the things they conceived. He insisted that no work be carried out in his studios before his artisans had mastered the appropriate fabrication techniques.

Product as Craft

1900 – 1930s

Mass production ultimately spawned the discipline known as “industrial design.” Prior to the assembly line and other modes of mechanized fabrication, craftspeople translated wood patterns into the tools and forms required for manufacture. Design, still heavily influenced by Victorian aesthetics, was limited to what could be cast in metal.

Artists and makers expressed their disdain for modern manufacturing through the Art Nouveau and Arts & Crafts movements—which celebrated techniques and motifs that could only be produced by hand. These practitioners of the “decorative arts” balanced striking design and meticulous execution to elevate everyday things—from wallcoverings and teapots to book designs and buildings.

In 1928, architect and graphic designer Walter Dorwin Teague was commissioned by Kodak to develop several new cameras. Insisting that he work on-site with Kodak engineers, Teague established the philosophical model for integrated product design. “The designer who gets results for the manufacturer,” he said, “plans with all departments of a business before he ever lays pencil to drawing board.”

Product as Style

1930s – 1980

The practice of industrial design came of age in the mid-twentieth century—but not without growing pains. The work of designer Henry Dreyfuss—who developed a scientific, user-centered approach to design and paved the way for ergonomics, anthropometrics, and human factors—made products more pleasing, easier and safer to use, and more efficient to make and repair.

Also during this period, higher education began offering industrial design programs. Some took a more aesthetic, emotional point of view, while others defined design from the engineer’s perspective. New graduates brought these often conflicting ideologies into the marketplace.

Over time, a schism formed within the business of product development. Corporate marketers pitched artists’ imaginative concepts for new products, but most executives still valued efficiency over form. Even when leadership signed off on an innovative design, a company’s in-house engineers often forced compromises based on cost constraints or limitations in manufacturing.

Product as ideology

1930s – 1980

The Art Deco movement of the 1920s and 1930s saw more artists entering the product design process. One in particular—a window dresser and illustrator named Raymond Loewy—launched a successful industrial design firm based largely on his relationship with the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR).

By 1935, railroad companies like B&O were powering their smaller passenger trains with diesel-electric locomotives featuring sleek, “streamlined” bodies. In response to the threat posed by this emerging technology, PRR hired Loewy to redesign their reliable-but-aging steam engines. He updated the look of their famous GG1 locomotive by calling for welded seams over rivets and by adding a shape-defining pinstripe. Later, he developed an iconic “sharknose” design for a different PRR model that would come to epitomize the streamlined style.

Loewy’s work with Pennsylvania Railroad underscored the importance of the designer’s involvement in engineering and manufacturing. Equally important, it was one of the first instances of design being leveraged by business as a competitive advantage.

Product as Differentiator

1980 – 1990

By the 1980s, the majority of industrial designers worked at independent consultancies. The added element of outside advisors further exacerbated the conflicts between in-house marketing and engineering teams—and threatened to widen the gap between designers’ proposed solutions and the resulting products.

Meanwhile, progressive businesses like Xerox recognized the impact industrial design could create. Their Star workstation was the first commercial personal computer to incorporate technologies that have since become standard—including a window-based Graphical User Interface (GUI) using icons and folders and a two-button mouse. Both inventions helped introduce “usability” into the design vernacular.

During this time, Doug Laube—an undergraduate studying graphic design and working in an architecture studio—was inspired by the potential in the still-evolving field of industrial design. He moved to Texas in 1981 and joined an international industrial design firm.
Doug’s multidisciplinary background and varied interests contributed to his belief that designers and engineers should collaborate in the creation of practical, yet innovative solutions. Driven to build his own business and pursue his vision, Doug founded Douglas Laube Industrial Design (DLID) in 1985. Among his first hires were a mechanical engineer and an experiential designer—and the foundation was set for the firm’s integrated approach.

Product as Brand

1984 – 1989

In 1984, Nike launched the Air Jordan footwear line. The company understood that a product is greater than the sum of its parts—and that research and testing were vital to creating not only a good product, but also a loyal following. Also in 1984, Apple introduced the Macintosh—a truly personal computer conceived and designed to empower the individual.

Throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s, products like OXO’s Good Grips utensils and Oakley’s performance eyewear pushed development into new territories and elevated design as the key to winning (and keeping) customers.

Another early design leader was Texas Instruments. When mechanical engineer Kevin Hodge joined TI in 1987, his team was working with DLID to develop some of TI’s popular calculators and educational products. While TI had both design and engineering capabilities in-house, DLID offered an objective perspective and facilitated communication between teams.

Kevin shared Doug’s belief that design and engineering should work together in service of the product and the end user. So, in 1995, he joined DLID to create and lead an engineering discipline and help realize Doug’s vision of building an integrated product development firm. Soon after, they would add research, ethnography, and more capabilities to the model.

1989 – 1999

The birth of the World Wide Web started a chain reaction that ultimately created a global consumer class, disrupted retail as we know it, and shifted the balance of power from marketers and products to buyers and users.

Leaders like Fossil responded with online shops offering customization, and consumers enjoyed access to corporate product development labs. Consumer research —from ergonomics to ethnography and anthropology—became an invaluable strategic lever.

In 1995, determined to expand his concept and create a culture built on diverse perspectives, Doug relaunched his company as Ignition. Offering research, industrial design, engineering, and prototyping, the Ignition team sought relationships with innovative business leaders looking to create deeper, more meaningful user experiences.

Product as Experience

1999 – 2006

Through innovation after innovation, brands built followings based not only on the quality of their products, but also on the way consumers engaged with them. Companies created entire ecosystems—from brick-and-mortar environments to immersive online stores—that converted customers into zealous evangelists.

Amid this transformation, an attorney in San Francisco was having trouble teaching his son to read. Working with a research laboratory, he developed an electronic learning tool—and then approached Ignition for guidance on design and manufacturing. Doug recognized the potential in LeapFrog’s technology and worked out a financial model and a strategy for not only a single product, but an entire line capable of competing with existing offerings from TI and V-Tech. Ignition presented designs for a suite of tools powerful enough to provide an engaging experience—yet simple enough to be used by a kid in a car seat.

LeapFrog’s Phonics Desk and Phonics Traveler were hailed as breakthrough educational products—with both earning Businessweek’s Design of the Decade award as the best learning toys of the 1990s. In 2001-2002, the Traveler was the best-selling educational toy in America.
Why would an industrial designer take on business strategy, financial modeling, and other critical considerations in product development? Because design leaders do more than imagine and draw things. His relationship with LeapFrog confirmed for Doug that he should “…be in the business of design, and not simply in the design business.”

Product as Opportunity

2007 – 2010

In 2007, Apple introduced iPhone — perhaps the ultimate example of UX design. Overnight, application development skyrocketed—and the definition of “product development” expanded to include digital experiences that, in turn, influence the way physical products look and feel. The universal adoption of smart devices put the consumer at the center of the design process and launched countless tech startups like Uber whose business models are built entirely around user experience.

One company that wanted to build more engaging products and break out of its perceived commodity status was a Texas-based Fortune 500 consumer electronics retailer. Their rebuilding plan included establishing an “innovation lab” for product strategy, research, ID, and engineering. Recognizing the potential in designing and selling products through the retailer’s massive network of omnipresent storefronts, Doug structured a unique relationship that gave Ignition an incentive-based payout on every new product sold.

In year two of the deal, Ignition-designed products accounted for more than $270 million of the retailer’s gross revenue. At a time when contract manufacturers were buying smaller design firms to reduce costs and grow margins, it was a bold move for a consumer products company to double down on innovation by investing in design leadership.

Product as Business Driver

2010 – 2019

As businesses entered the era of innovation, leaders brought design thinking to the highest levels in their organizations. Rather than starting with ideas for products and then trying to find buyers, companies and product teams identified specific users with specific needs—and then created the best possible solutions for them.

Still, executives struggled to keep everyone focused. Inevitably, there were conflicts of interest between in-house teams, contractors, consultants, suppliers, and manufacturers. At each point of conflict came the risk of compromise.

In his experience as a designer and business owner, Doug knew the only way to deliver real results for product owners was to add value at every stage of product development—especially in manufacturing. He believed accountability in design and engineering could drive efficiencies, reduce costs, and increase margins—all while ensuring the product would meet or exceed the user’s expectations.
In 2010, Doug co-founded IDM on the premise that “Invent,” “Design,” and “Make” were more than tasks or capabilities—they are the essential elements from which innovation is conceived, engineered, built, and brought to market. Leadership is the bond that keeps the elements together and adds value throughout.

Product as relationship

Today and Beyond

Today, humans don’t merely have products, or even experiences with products. We have relationships with products. We wear them as symbols of who we are. We rely on them not only for information or entertainment, but also for our safety and security. We take products for granted. We trust them. Soon, we may even allow them inside our brains.

Contemporary designers and engineers still operate in many of the same ways we always have. Working across disciplines, business units, and enterprises, we strategize, plan, design, engineer, build, and ship things. The difference is that what we build today often looks less like a “thing” and more like a reflection of a relationship with a user.

Integrated product development is about anticipating, forging, and facilitating those relationships. In other words, it’s about designing them. Now, innovation is measured not in units shipped, but in the impact an idea can have on an individual, a culture, or on society as a whole.
Innovation at this level takes more than vision. It takes experience, knowledge, perspective, flexibility, and often the sheer will to see it through. It takes the ability to identify opportunities and to put the people and systems in place to seize them. It requires an environment where the outcome drives the process, not the other way around. Product development takes design leadership. And IDM is all in.