The plans are finished, the sconces for the hallways are chosen, and the handles on the nightstands match the curve of the headboard. But how are you going to get your carefully curated furniture, fixtures, and equipment to the job site? Where are you going to store it?
By including an FF&E Freight Provider in planning from the start, you can ensure your projects are a success.
1. Tour Your Prospective Provider’s Facility If you are looking for a provider, most are going to say they have the space to accommodate your project. Some will do anything to close the deal – including making promises they aren’t able to keep. Forced by the pressure of hitting quotas and KPIs set by management they need this deal.
So ask if you can stop by for a tour of their facility. See the space where your goods and equipment will be stored and consolidated. Make sure they have the proper safety precautions in place to guarantee your freight makes it its final destination.
2. Cut Out the Middle Man With a Single Source Provider Even the simplest of supply chains have a lot of moving parts. With projects, as well as furniture, fixtures, and equipment freight, the number of touch points can quickly add up. Freight services, warehousing, and distribution, customs clearance. Each one of those points of handling could mean a markup which will be passed along to the shipper. This makes it difficult to plan your shipments – as there are so many variables that could factor into your ultimate freight cost.
By choosing a single-source provider you are eliminating the unnecessary levels of price adjustment inherent in supply chain management. Instead of paying an amount which will satisfy 3, 4, 5 or more players, your price will be more balanced and true – allowing you to forecast and plan better. This isn’t always an option – and shouldn’t be considered a deal-breaker, but fewer hands can mean lower prices.
3. MAKE SURE THEY HAVE THEIR OWN ASSETS Space, equipment, staff, expertise. These are all assets which are a must for a healthy and well-operating logistics company. If you remove or diminish one of these important features, supply chains become fragile and susceptible to breaking. Protect the time and money you’ve invested in your project by choosing a well-equipped FF&E Partner.
Make sure your hospitality FF&E provider has all of the necessary pieces to function. A huge warehouse is great, but if they don’t have the team to maintain their 200,000 square feet, most of it will be rendered useless. Go deeper, and find out if they have the knowledge and expertise to fulfill all of your needs. A large team with no experience is just a bunch 0s – which will end up on your bottom line.
4. DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR A REFERENCE OR REVIEW Don’t just take the sales person’s word for it. Ask them to explain and walk you through a previous similar project. Look for similarities, issues that came up, and how problems were dealt with in order to achieve success. The information gained from these conversations will help you understand the project at hand and give you a better vision of their strengths and weaknesses as a provider.
Just ask your contact for a reference or a customer success story from a past client. Most great providers will be excited to share their wins with you.
5. UNDERSTAND YOUR FF&E NEEDS BEFORE YOU CHOOSE Nothing causes as many logistics headaches as not knowing the full scope of work before a project begins. Will you need FF&E installation? Warehousing? Does the space you are working in have room for a spot delivery container? Set up consultations, meetings, and game out your projects to a tedious degree. Know what your goals are, understand all of the threats to your success, and work with your partner to find solutions before you begin. This will ensure your service will go more smoothly.