20 Jan 2017 2:30 PM
The right fit-out can make your practice, but a range of fit-out disasters can break it. That’s why it’s vital to select a fit-out contractor who has a strong track record, can assist with the design of your practice, and stands by the quality of their work with clear guarantees.
Here are seven questions you should ask with choosing your fit-out contractor:
1. What’s their track record?
While website testimonials provide a good snapshot of the quality of work you can expect from a contractor, don’t rely on written references alone. Rather, ask to see photos of the contractor’s previous work, and even consider visiting the premises of some of their former clients to get a first-hand view of how their work stands up.
2. Do they offer practice design?
A practice fit-out can be a complicated business, and while you’ll want to stay involved in the design process, a fit-out contractor who has expertise in practice design will help deliver a better overall result. For example, they will be able to warn you against common design mistakes, recommend money-saving design solutions, and provide design ideas that you may not have considered.
3. Do they have turnkey capacity?
The last thing you want to do is project manage the fit-out of your practice. Don’t waste time co-ordinating tradespeople when you can be focusing on the operational aspects of your practice. A fit-out contractor who offers a turnkey solution will take stress off your shoulders, and leave you with more time to do what you do best.
4. Are they experienced in your area of specialisation?
If you run a specialised business such as a radiology clinic, dental surgery or veterinary practice that requires sophisticated machinery or has other specialised needs, don’t trust your fit-out to a run-of-the-mill general contractor. Rather, look for contractors with experience fitting out practices in your area of specialisation.
5. Do they have the appropriate licenses?
You’ll need to ensure that your contractor of choice has all the necessary licenses that will be required to complete your fit-out. For example, a general carpenter usually won’t be licensed to carry out electrical work, and an electrician may not have the necessary certification to conduct building work. Choose a contractor who can complete your fit-out without you having to call in additional tradespeople.
6. Do they use subcontractors?
Many contractors will use a range of subcontractors to complete your fit-out. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s important to ask your fit-out contractor about their subcontractor policy before signing on the dotted line. Ask them to explain exactly which aspects of your fit-out will be handled by subcontractors and how those subcontractors will be managed. For example, will a company-employed contractor be onsite at all times, or will there be periods where subcontractors are left unsupervised? And will a company-employed contractor inspect and approve all subcontracted work throughout the fit-out process?
7. What work guarantees do they offer?
A good fit-out contractor will stand by their work. Be sure to ask them to explain the details of any guarantees they offer, and get them to detail – in writing – what process they follow should you be dissatisfied with any of their workmanship.
Cassin & Sons specialises in custom medical fit outs, dental fit outs, radiology fit outs and veterinary fit outs with more than 28 years of experience in the healthcare fit out industry. Call our friendly team on 1300 122 774 to find out what we can do for you.