Like with most projects, most of us would like to focus more on the things that could go right instead of the things that could go wrong. But we’ve all heard horror stories about projects getting sidetracked. From spiralling costs due to unforeseen challenges or the contractor not living up to the client’s expectations, there are hundreds of possibilities where things could go haywire!.
But that doesn’t mean you should let the potential errors scare you. The better prepared you are, the less stressful it’ll be when you deal with sudden situations. This is especially true if you’re undertaking a shopfitting project wherein the smallest of details matter.
To ensure your project goes smoothly as possible, here are our top 10 tips to help make your shopfitting a huge success.
Tip #1: Do your groundwork before signing the lease
Ideally, you want to commission a detailed survey and put back as much as you can on your landlord’s side of things. Make sure that your landlord provides up-to-date asbestos surveys, and electrical installation reports before you sign the lease.
Tip #2: Ask for professional advice on your shopfitting
Whether it be building regulations or planning permission for proposed alterations, these things can be time-consuming (not to mention expensive) to sort out by yourself. A lot goes into shopfitting than most people think and in this instance, advice from a shopfitting professional will surely help.
Tip #3: Choose the right shopfitting partner
When choosing a shopfitting partner, you want to work with a company that you can trust 100%. Better yet, collaborate with a company that you’ve previously had experience with so that you know what to expect out of their shopfitting service. You can also get recommendations from other companies to ensure you’re choosing a reputable shopfitting partner.
The company should be flexible and responsive right from the start. They should be able to provide drawings, estimates, and advice without any issues. Do you feel confident that they can turn your vision into reality? More importantly, can you visit their recently completed projects and speak to their clients first-hand about their experiences?
Tip #4: Communication is key
Communication is vital to a successful fitout considering that the process brings together a range of different trades. Each one will want to work on their own specialties and any miscommunication throughout the shopfitting process can spell huge disaster! It’s much better to choose a contractor who can supply all the skills required so you can eliminate the headaches and have a single person assume responsibility for the whole project.
Tip #5: Knowledge and experience are crucial
A contractor who has relevant experience in your field will prove to be invaluable in terms of space planning, store layout, and design. Contractors specialise in many different sectors and working with someone who knows the ins and outs of your industry can lead to meaningful changes overall!
The contractor should also be able to determine which materials best suit your specific project to avoid costly and inconvenient repairs due to the failure of components.
Tip #6: Check estimates in detail
Like we previously mentioned, even the smallest of details matter in a shopfitting process, so be sure there is enough detail in the estimates. Work with a contractor who can provide you with 3D visuals and detailed drawings along with samples of colours and finishes so you can get a better idea of the bigger picture.
Tip #7: Look out for conditional clauses
Be on the lookout for things such as ‘subject to the condition of the subfloor when exposed’. If possible, address all possible unknowns by doing your due diligence. A day or two’s worth of delays may unearth something that can be put back to the landlord to fix, thus saving you from unexpected expenses and further delays later on.
Tip #8: Have a programme of works for your shopfitting
This ensures that you have a handy tool for checking if the project is on-time. But don’t micromanage and let your shopfitter take control!
Tip #9: Have a plan for your merchandising
It’s important that you have a detailed plan for your merchandising as this helps with last-minute rushes to purchase extra equipment before opening day.
Tip #10: Be realistic with your deadlines
A professional shopfitter understands that time is money and you need to be trading again fast! But that doesn’t mean you should put unreasonable pressure on their shoulders. Doing so will only lead to costly errors and stressful arguments that can derail the project even further. As long as they’re on track to complete the project, be patient and let them take care of the rest.
The above tips are just some examples of ways you can mitigate the common errors and mishaps that happen in a given project. The bottom line is any reputable shopfitter will ensure that things go smoothly from start to finish. Don’t settle for an unproven company with no track record and instead work with a recognised shopfitter so that you can benefit from a high-quality and professional service.