Selecting vendors — whether it be for something as simple as who provides your office supplies or as complex as who you turn to for legal advice — is essential to running any business. The vendors you work with need to be responsive, reliable, and able to fill the gaps in your business’ needs.
As a contractor or manufacturers' representative, you might not have extensive knowledge about ductwork design. Still, you know that it's a crucial piece of any construction or machine installation project. Not only should your ductwork vendor be able to fill all of your ductwork needs, but they should be willing to form a long-term partnership with you.
Here’s why a vendor that manufactures and sells a broad product line of ductwork will make sourcing and selling it easy.
They will have a broader knowledge of applications
In ductwork design, the application is everything. The material you need to convey and the environment in which your ductwork is installed will determine what the ductwork is made of and the fit of the ductwork. A good vendor will give you access to knowledgeable reps — not just order-takers who assume you know what you need or sales reps that only want to close the deal. The person you are working with should ask about the application and make recommendations on the right type of ductwork.
To be able to supply the right ductwork, your vendor should ask questions like:
- What will the ductwork convey?
- What’s the environment like in the facility?
- Are there mandatory specifications, or ranges?
- What challenges are unique to this quote or installation?
Application knowledge is indispensable when you bid on projects or encounter a new industry. A ductwork vendor that manufactures multiple types of ductwork will have the experience and expertise to make the right recommendations for your specific application.
They will provide a breadth of products from a single source
A good vendor works in multiple industries, knows the right type of ductwork to use, and can provide you with the ductwork and components you need for a complete system. It may seem like an obvious thought, but if your vendor only sells one type of ductwork, how do you know you're getting the best and not just what's available?
Not only will they supply the right standard straights and fittings in different applications, but the best ductwork suppliers will also be able to design and manufacture special ducting components that may be unique to your customers, like custom hoods or transitions. Ductwork manufacturers need to have:
- Experienced employees who can manufacture to the specs of an existing drawing
- Application knowledge to be able to design a custom component
- Creativity to be able to modify a standard part to fit a unique application (which could even save you money in the right situation)
It's also worth considering how much time and effort it takes to establish a working relationship with a new partner. It's frustrating to have to educate new vendors on your industry and customers, or submit credit applications and wait on approval. Not only that, but the customer service you provide could suffer if you have to coordinate among multiple vendors. You risk missing a bid deadline or not receiving the components you need for installation on time if you are working with multiple vendors or juggling multiple shipments.
They will want to form a long-term relationship
Being able to work with a single vendor also allows you to form a long-term relationship. A ductwork supplier should want to collaborate with you on ductwork that will keep plants running smoothly, even if that means the supplier may make less money from you.
- Have you ever sent a list of components to a vendor and received what you asked for, even if it wasn’t right for the application?
- Have you ever overpaid for a one-off part that didn’t do the job you needed?
- Have you ever asked for a recommendation and found out that it was the most expensive solution?
You'll want to find someone who can consult on what you need and why you need it. Armed with even a basic understanding of the ductwork you sell or install will make you a ductwork hero on every project.
Products aren’t the only factor in selecting your ductwork supplier
We know there are many suppliers and vendors of industrial ductwork in the market — and a lot of them offer quality products. However, the right supplier will also have an expert team that understands ductwork applications and design. A vendor that manufactures all of the components you need for a complete ductwork system will save you time and money, and they will help you do your job. You deserve a ductwork supplier that will listen and understand your needs, become a reliable partner, and ultimately make ductwork easy.
Talk to a Duct Guy about your ductwork needs.