The Contract therefore concerns the production of tailor-made and “turnkey” solutions, created starting from the requests of a client and which, during the development phase, open up to ample margins for customization.
But what are the characteristics that a supplier of custom solutions must have? Here are some tips on how to choose a contractor, based on experience in the sector and alongside architects and designers.
Criteria for choosing a contractor
What peculiarities must a company that operates in the contract world possess? Below I provide some useful guidelines for the customer looking for partners for the creation of custom products and tailor-made projects. So let’s see how to choose a contractor, taking into account essential values for today’s market.
The importance of Project Management
In order to meet the customer’s needs with custom services and products, a contractor must be equipped with an effective organization that aims to minimize waste and eliminate it (lean production).
The processes must be managed by Project Management, which is the business area that cannot be missed. He is responsible for activities such as the creation of the business plan, value engineering for cost reduction in compliance with the project and the implementation of sustainable and reliable production plans. Not surprisingly, Project Management is responsible for 75% of the costs of a project, even if it only affects 6% – 8% of them.
Flexibility and customization
Many contractors were born in the sector of the supply of standard products to the private sector, a sector that is based on a linear approach such as: product → price list → distribution channel.
The contract world, on the other hand, is based on the relationship between projects and orders. Not being clear about this concept means running into waste and errors. Before facing this market, therefore, a company must undergo a careful process of analysis to avoid the risk of large losses or insurmountable problems with its customers.
Therefore, first of all, it is necessary to establish whether you have the necessary know-how and whether you are able to guarantee a flexible and customized production. The approach used in the Contract sector is radically different from standard production.
Ability to manage information flows
In fact, a contract project generates a very high volume of information between the different departments of the company and between it and the outside world. The inability to manage these flows with adequate tools can generate even serious shortcomings due to the loss of information. If we consider that projects in this sector can last for many months, the variations in the specifications during construction and the information that follow are inevitably very numerous.
And if the contractor has not activated an effective management of these variations, it can face various problems. To prevent this, it is possible to use specific software for process control, so that, as the project grows, is approved or undergoes changes, all the information is processed by the systems that communicate with the company management without resorting to use of human resources. This also means being flexible.
Different approach than standard production
Adapting your systems means having control over costs and timing, simplifying processes, avoiding redundant activities and reducing inefficiencies due to the involvement of too many functions in the management of the same information. This often happens in companies that try to use their usual pipeline, created for standard production, even for custom, without realizing that not only are the procedures profoundly different, but that it is also necessary to adopt a completely different way of thinking. .
The next tip on how to choose a contractor comes from everything we’ve referred to so far. Precisely because of the flexibility and high level of customization that is required in a project of this type, it is good that a company in the Contract world is specialized in a single area. Whether it is the retail sector, the residential one or, again, the hotellerie, the contractor must generate unique products or services, which stand out from others on the market for innovation, style, quality of the materials used.
In order to be able to offer the customer a turnkey project in which each element boasts high production standards, it is important for a contractor to be able to count on collaboration with partners and suppliers able to get where he stops. This, also with a view to a desirable growth and to be able, over time, to provide increasingly high-level products and services.
Furthermore, establishing collaborative relationships allows small companies to be stronger together and to be able to face the market with greater attractive power.
Weaving strategic relationships therefore allows you to expand your range of action, but also to more easily identify new business opportunities.
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