We have seen a number of customers make the same coating mistakes. We’ve created a list of the six common mistakes and recommendations for how to avoid making them that we will share one at a time, starting with this post. At the heart of this list is the importance of thorough planning, making smart choices and staying competitive. You can get the full list by downloading the guide, “Keep Coating Customers Growing” where we share some of the common mistakes and opportunities we have observed so you can have rewarding experiences with your future coatings projects.
MISTAKE 1: Not having a plan if a vendor can’t hold up its end of a project.
You probably rely on a range of vendors to complete projects, and sometimes things don’t go according to plan. A coating you need isn’t delivered on time. A new environmental regulation is created that your vendor can’t comply with. In cases like this, you need to be able to react as efficiently as possible. Not having a Plan B in place is a big mistake.
If you work without a Plan B, you will eventually get burned. You can have shut downs due to a lack of raw materials. You can miss deadlines or turn out a poor-quality product because of inconsistency. If prices rise and you don’t have a secondary vendor standing by with a better price, you can be forced to deal with unnecessarily high costs or an alternative, price-competitive product option from another vendor.
How to prevent this mistake
Always have a Plan B. Stay in touch with your vendors and ask them questions about potential issues that could affect their work on every project. Know the names of the people who represent your suppliers. Try to anticipate what could happen and be ready. We often see unexpected price increases derail project execution. Have a plan in place in case prices do indeed increase.
Your Plan B should also include accessible specifications for every project so anyone on your end can retrieve them. If you need to switch vendors or vendor representatives in a hurry, be ready to communicate the details of a project so the new vendor can quickly take the reins. If you don’t already have one, put together a secondary source list with contact information so you have it ready — just in case.
We work with more than one coatings manufacturer, which is part of our insurance or contingency plan. If one manufacturer can’t fulfill its part of a project, we find one that can.
Contact me at 317-879-2055 if you need help finding a backup vendor.