A retailer introduced a new concept store. The initial roll-out was four stores, each of them high profile. Separate general contractors had been hired to build them. A problem developed at one location when the retailer wanted to institute their preventative maintenance program. When the client sent in their maintenance contractor to touch up, the specified paints did not match. This maintenance contractor told the retailer that they needed to repaint the store to the current spec because there was no way to figure out what material was used, therefore, there was no way that areas could be touched up. We were called in for a second opinion.
The scope of work needed to execute this project included:
- Create options for the client
- Find out what material was originally used so that a plan can be developed using off spec material
- Provide pricing to repaint the store up to the correct spec
- Supply and store appropriate material per direction of client to maintain this store
The constraints of this project included:
- This was a high profile store that needed to be corrected immediately.
- The relationship between the retailer and the general and painting contractors had soured and therefore the contractors were not cooperative.
- Our client had no leverage to backcharge the original contractors to repaint the store. The money needed to correct the problem was not budgeted for, so it needed to go through a longer approval process.
We understood that our client was in a difficult situation and that we needed to create options for them. Our solution included:
- Contacting the general contractor and painting contractor to get the necessary information. They were adamant about not helping us. We pleaded with them. No information was given.
- Finding out more about the painting contractor. We found out where they were based and where they performed work.
- Visiting all the nationwide and local paint supply companies within 20 miles of the mall and to ask if they have any paint spec for this job.
- Finding a small paint store near the mall that had draw downs for all the surfaces. The material used was not what the retailer had specified. They were close color matches using different materials.
- Ordering small quantities of all of the products to test them in the store on the surfaces that needed to be touched up.
- Reviewing the specified material to look into sourcing it in case the client wanted to repaint it. We found out, unbeknown to the client, that this material was a specialty product that was produced and distributed out of only one location in the country, despite the manufacturer having many locations nationwide. We informed the client of this situation and the potential difficulty it presented on a go forward basis.
- Testing the off spec materials to ensure they matched.
- Providing costs on both options to the client.
Clients and vendors need to have a partnership type of relationship. In a true partnership, each side will dedicate themselves to helping the other. We could not accept that our client was out of options. There was no way of finding out what paint was used was not an acceptable situation for us, regardless of the soured relationship between the client and their original vendor. We tried first to reason with the painting contractor. Once that did not work, we did a little reconnaissance work to find out where he purchased the material. In the end, we were able to give our client the information to make their decisions. We were able to give them options.