First, let us establish what we mean by multi-product specification. In this sense, I am talking about specifying multiple products from a single supplier.
In the world of procurement, it is acknowledged that getting a number of quotes for products and services can help find what you need. With specification, this could also be said, but there is an argument for using the same supplier for multiple products.
Here we look at some advantages for using one supplier for multiple products.
One of the biggest advantages of specifying multiple products from one supplier is the potential cost saving that can be made. In the first instance, the production facilities within the supplier’s premises may manage economies of scale if some products are manufactured together. This efficiency can be passed down the line.
In addition to this cost savings can be made by reduced costs in the delivery of products. In our case, because we have a wide breadth of products, our clients and customers often see cost reductions when taking delivery of multiple products.
By the same token, reduction in time scales can be achieved if specifiers use the same supplier for a number of products. The production element of the supply chain may be sped up in these circumstances not to mention the time saved from an administrational point of view. Reducing the time taken to research products, and source a suitable product can be achieved by using multi-product specification.
The third reason to look at multi-product specification is where the products in question offer a collaborative effect within the building. An example of this is our very own cast stone lintel coupled with a steel lintel inner.
The cast stone lintel is an attractive headstone that works in many modern buildings, but it has little structural effect. We regularly talk to specifiers about using a steel lintel behind the cast stone to ensure the structural performance required is achieved. Because both products are made in the same factory, the specification, drawing, and production can be co-operative and made to ensure the two products work together.
Consistent level of information and service
A practical reason behind using the same supplier for multiple products is quite simply the fact that you know what to expect. You will receive the same level and type of information for each product, and if you are used to getting certain product information for specifications, this could be useful.
It is also reasonable to expect a consistent level of service from the product manufacturer or supplier. If their service offering is something you like or require, there is every reason to keep using them for different types of products.
As well as using a company where you have expectations in terms of the product quality and service that you would receive, it is also beneficial to have a shared understanding of what is trying to be achieved.
Trust is a vital part of business, especially in the construction industry where as a specifier you must be able to trust that the products you specify will do the job.
Beyond that, it also helps to have common values; if a supplier has been working with you on one project and can offer another product for the same project, they will be clued into the design intent and your individual goals and objectives.
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