New England Design & Construction

by Emily Blackburn

David Supple

Boston, MA
GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 93%
GQ 2020 Recommend Rate: 96%
Number of Jobs in 2020: 15
Type of Firm: Design/Build
CEO: David Supple

1. Demand for services is stronger than ever. Supply delays are widespread. Building product prices are rising. Please name the concrete steps you take to keep customers satisfied as timelines and prices are fluctuating?

As we have always done, setting a realistic expectation on both cost and timeline from the start of a project is a key aspect of our DesignBuild approach. We start our projects with a ballpark estimate that we say has a 25% cost variability to account for design decisions made by the client, as well as cost fluctuations of materials. Additionally, we set all design and construction milestone dates on the calendar so that we have a clear sense of timeline and next steps with each client and they are never wondering what comes next.

2. A good remodeling or home improvement firm knows the limits of its capabilities to take on additional work. What do/would you communicate to clients when you cannot handle their job and must decline their inquiry?

Our DesignBuild process does allow us to get the logistics of construction set up for success during the design process, which has made us very nimble and able to stay ready for new work. We have grown our team during the pandemic, hiring both a new Designer as well as a new Project Manager.

When we must turn a client down, it is usually because their scope of work is smaller than we are best suited for and/or we are not able to deliver what they are looking for at their intended budget. When this happens we typically recommend another professional who may be better suited for the project, and share with them our company 2021 cost guide as an educational resource on what various remodeling projects cost.

3. During busy times like these, operational adjustments are needed in order to take on more work, often with the same level of staffing. What steps have you taken to ensure a quality experience despite the added workloads for your team?

We have promoted one of our project managers to Construction manager to oversee all construction operations on a more day to day basis, while creating a role for production director, someone who handles permitting and higher level logistics. Additionally we have hired a new Project Manager and Designer to meet the increased demand for projects in our area.

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