Component Designers and the “Wheel of Responsibility” (Part 2)

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In Part 1 one of this article, we laid the groundwork and the 4 quadrants. Please click here to review.

You see, there is much, much more that goes into the design process than is acknowledged or respected. Are you aware of this fact? If not, ignorance is NOT bliss. If you are aware, then are you a part of the solution or a part of the problem?

The responsibility for the designer is further illustrated and begins with the model shown below:

truss-design-responsibility

In each of these quadrants, there are three specific targets that are highlighted as the key “lubrication” for a component manufacturer’s business model. Simply put, the designer has the most responsibility directly related to the component manufacturers:

  • Reputation = Designer has to think about
  • Profitability = Designer has to comprehend
  • Customer satisfaction level = Designer has to meet the needs of
  • Repeat business factor = Designer has to understand how to please

When all is said and done, each of these 12 items are interconnected. They all touch each other. They are all so tightly interwoven that if just one of these quadrants are ignored or overlooked, it could be dangerous to the other 3 quadrants. It could also be costly.

Let’s examine this further:

Reputation = Designer has to think about

What exactly does a designer have to think about in consideration of the company’s reputation?

truss-building-codes

Each and every product delivered to the jobsite has to uphold to the manufacturer’s company values, adhere to the building codes and satisfy the building inspector, right? Each of the 3 items in this quadrant have a direct effect on the component manufacturer’s reputation. If the designer is not thinking about these things in the design process, reputation suffers. Plain and simple!

Time to ask yourself a few tough questions (now is the time to be open-minded):

  1. When was the last time you invested in your design team and held a meeting about company mission, values and/or direction?
  2. When was the last time you asked your design team to take the time and review the building code changes and updates proactively?
  3. When was the last time you scheduled a meeting with the local building inspector to help foster a direct, open, positive relationship of strong communication?

Profitability = Designer has to comprehend

What exactly does a designer have to think about in consideration of comprehension?

truss-software

Each and every product delivered to the jobsite has to uphold to the software provider’s capabilities, precisely adhere to the project’s plans and satisfy the expectations of the framing crew “setting” the trusses, right? Each of the 3 items in this quadrant have a direct effect on the component manufacturer’s profit margin. If the designer is not thinking about these things in the design process, profits suffer. Plain and simple!

Time to ask yourself a few tough questions (now is the time to be open-minded):

  1. When was the last time you invested in your design team and asked them to take the new courses on MiTek University?
  2. Are you aware that MiTek has a weekly newsletter called “Productivity” that highlights changes and upgrades to the software?
  3. If you are aware of the newsletter, are all of your designers getting this extremely valuable email each Thursday?
  4. When you do have “truss repairs”, how many of those design errors are directly related to plan reading?
  5. When was the last time you asked your veteran designers on the team to take the time and help out those with less experience reading plans?
  6. When was the last time you scheduled a meeting with the local framing contractor on the jobsite to help foster a direct, open, positive relationship with strong communication?

In just these 2 quadrants, we have outlined some very important considerations for reputation and profit. The remaining 2 quadrants relate to customer satisfaction and repeat business.

In Part 3 of this article, we will conclude and fill in the rest of the blanks. Stay tuned!

Naida Gould – Owner

Gould Design, Inc.

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