What’s your quality?

by rheselbarth@solagroup.com

It’s easy to proclaim that your remodeling business is committed to quality, but it’s more difficult to prove it. Every project is different, so it can be difficult to ensure consistency. The trick is to solidify quality checks into the remodeling process, not the finished product. Get your processes in order and quality will shine in your clients’ new space.

Product manufacturers have clearer paths to proving their commitment to quality, because their products are consistently similar, over and over and over. The assembly line is the perfect place to implement quality checks, as any trade magazine editor can tell you. Throw a dart at a lineup of us and I bet whoever you hit between the eyes has been on no less than five factory tours in his or her career.

The number of factory tours I’ve been on is approaching 20, and I can recall most if not all of them. What I recall most from three recent factory tours are the quality assurance processes the manufacturers have in place.  

The Wellborn Cabinets factory in Alabama is a well-oiled machine. Thousands of SKUs to create seemingly countless configurations of cabinets are produced with striking precision by people who work repetitive, exhausting shifts in this building. It’s impressive to say the least. The slightest imperfections catch the eye of the door inspectors. The women who match grain from an endless supply of wood pieces perform such highly specialized work, they have earned my respect.   

At the Behr plant in California where paint and related products are imagined, created, packaged and shipped, the commitment to quality is evident, everywhere. Making the paint is easy; it’s the incredibly long, complicated process of developing the right chemistry, the right color, the right marketing plan, the right materials and more that matters most.

The same applies to the LP Building Products facility, also in Alabama, where OSB is produced. At every step in the process, efforts are made to ensure the highest-quality products. I had no idea the degree to which technology plays a role in today’s lumber mills. Check it out if you can.  

At some point in most remodelers’ marketing efforts, the word quality is mentioned, either in a brochure, on a web site or out loud by the remodeler. Do homeowners ever ask what you mean by “quality?” Do they ask you to prove it? Or is the word “quality” simply marketing mumbo-jumbo? If the next homeowner you meet with asks you to prove your commitment to quality, can you cite examples? What would you say?

Prove it in our LinkedIn group. If you’re not a member, request to join and we’ll welcome you to the conversation.


This is Qualified Remodeler’s 40th year

If you didn’t notice the little icon on this issue’s cover, take another look. March 2014 marks the beginning of Qualified Remodeler’s 40th year of publication. By March 2015, we will have reached our  40th anniversary. Is that clear as mud? If you’d like to read the first edition of Qualified Remodeler – the first magazine to commit to the professionals in the remodeling market – go to forresidentialpros.com/11316363 to download a PDF. Share your comments about the issue on our Facebook page, in our LinkedIn group or by sending email to editor@qrmagazine.com.


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