5 Advantages of Design Service Outsourcing

Having been a Design Professional since the 70’s, I have seen a lot of what works well. And I have also seen its opposite! Back in the “day” when I began designing, it was all calculators and rulers. My how things have changed! It has been many years now since I have seen a “hand-drawn” set of plans. It just doesn’t happen anymore. Times have changed and we, as industry professionals need to change with the time.

Outsourcing for engineering design in the roof truss industry was once thought of as unnecessary. Today, this has become an advantageous way to get quality results for projects large and small. While lacking the in-house interaction of face to face conversations, with today’s technology nothing is really lost in the communication of what the project design should be. Face-to-face now means Skype and a video camera!

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In fact, many things are gained using outsourcing, including your company’s profit percentage points. I have listed 5 items to pay specific attention to:

  1. Design Professionals at the manufacturer’s location can be reduced. This saves on payroll expenses, payroll and labor costs being the largest expense a company has. Combine that with insurance cost reductions and you are talking about a significant amount. Your outsourced Design Professional has been trained already at no cost to you.
  2. Training and education costs disappear. It’s easier to train a person to email and file, than it is to design trusses. Outsource companies (OSC) have experts in design, with many years of experience, on call 24-7. Gould Design, Inc., for example, has designers in different time zones around the country. In fact, GDI even has members of its design team in Europe, clear across the ocean!
  3. Hardware costs are greatly reduced. 4 designers – 4 computers, 2 designers – 2 computers. Software costs reduced as well, as these become the responsibility of the OSC.
  4. Plan changes are transmitted directly to the OSC from the architect’s office, thus saving printer ink, paper and re-packaging costs. Direct contact such as this reduces errors in interpretation.
  5. The OSC submits engineering drawings for seals, handles all technical questions and requirements for that process. The OSC follows up to facilitate timely turn-around.

If you, as an owner or manager, are looking for ways to reduce costs at your location, design service outsourcing is one advantageous answer. If you have not tried it, what are you waiting for? If you have and it was not successful, what was the reason?

Some thoughts to ponder if you have unsuccessfully tried using an OSC:

  • Was your source licensed and insured?
  • Does your source have a website or a blog?
  • Was your source a proven leader in OSC for the industry?
  • Does your source have a clearly defined mission statement?
  • Was your source endorsed by your plate company?
  • Did you and your source have a mutually binding confidentiality agreement?
  • Was your source recommended by your industry peers?
  • Did your source have defined criteria to perform accurately from?

If your answer was no to ANY of these questions, then your source wasn’t an OSC. It was more than likely a one-man-operation that was “flying by the seat of his pants”. These types are easily identified by asking the simple questions above. Do you really want this type working for your company?

With all of the tools at your fingertips, you need to look at utilizing them. Your customers deserve the best. Are there any television sets made without a remote control these days? Of course not! Why should there be component manufacturers not utilizing the best resources there are to offer? Contact your plate supplier today and ask who they would recommend you use.

Richard Gould

Design Administration

Gould Design, Inc.