Must-haves & Nice-to-haves: What to Consider When Looking for a New Sign Fitter
Feb 7, 2022
When it’s time to start a new project, building a team of full-time employees, freelancers, and sign installation contractor is the first step. Tackling a task like this is often not easy, but it should not be tedious either.
Having the right team in place can be helpful in terms of cost, quality, and efficiency, so everyone – you, as an installation project manager, your company, and the client, can benefit greatly from bringing in the right people for the job.
In this article, you’ll find a list of qualities to consider while selecting a signage and graphics installer. It’s a combination of hard and soft skills that can help you quickly locate the best fit for the job. That way, you can be certain that you will establish the best collaboration possible with your team and achieve the desired results set by your client.
So, what qualities to look for in the candidates joining your installation team?
Open communication enforces a culture of trust by sharing information quickly and freely, which helps build strong relationships within the team. Because even the best sign installers can occasionally face unforeseen circumstances, handling such communication is essential to ensure smooth collaboration. Ask how they would communicate factors that might shift the delivery date of your new graphics installation.
When working multiple jobs simultaneously, proper communication helps you to know how each team is progressing. You should be familiar with the project’s milestones as well as be updated on its progress. It’s the proactive approach to communication that helps to showcase the signage installer’s dedication and ease of working.
Reliability & time-management
The installation date is set for a reason; it’s one of the factors that clients use to define the success of a job. It’s also your responsibility, as an installation manager, to provide all the resources and ensure that you and your installation team meet the deadline and deliver the installed signage according to the client’s needs. In the selection process, ask how they prioritise their tasks, as well as balance the quality and submission of the job on time.
A signage installer should be on the same page – keep in mind the deadline and know its importance. So while you focus on growing your business and closing new deals, you know they are doing their job, and completion photos will pop up in your inbox on time. In addition, one of the ways to improve the sign-off stage is to implement workflow management software, which allows you to get photos from installers and share them with customers immediately.
The selection process of freelance vinyl graphics installers and sub-contractors often leaves installation managers vulnerable to skill gaps and work quality. They usually spend little time checking for necessary qualifications and skill sets of graphics and signage installers for a specific project. On the other hand, the hiring process of an in-house sign fitter can be more rigorous and precise.
It’s helpful to establish a set of criteria for a potential candidate considering work scope, project duration, and performance expectations. Do the interview, ask for examples of previous vinyl wrap installations or architectural signage, and consider giving them a test job first.
Sacrificing quality, even for a discount, makes you more vulnerable to paying what you saved, or more, to fix a poorly-completed job.
Certificates & training
When it comes to hard skills, customers want to know that they can rely on your business. Thus, installers should possess the necessary training, certificates, and safety badges to ensure that clients can trust your team. Therefore, remember to look for the installer certifications (CSCS, IPAF, PASMA) required for your project. For example, many clients now insist that graphics be installed by Blue CSCS cardholders, which requires the sign fitters to receive additional training.
The journey of finding the right freelance or full-time signage and graphics installer is not easy, but taking into consideration the qualities mentioned above will help you facilitate this process and establish long-term relationships. Additionally, if you are looking to maximise your network’s performance, take a look at one of our recent articles where we discuss how to build a robust network of freelance graphics installers & subcontractors.
To find freelance installers or subcontracting companies – check out the Signage Installation Directory. It’s a free go-to tool that will help you subcontract according to your specific needs (e.g., skills & location).