The weather is starting to turn and golf season, I mean, building season is upon us. Well, as many of you know the building season hasn’t had a season, it’s just been year round! It’s been so exciting to be a part of our industry and the explosion we have seen this last year, even when it was already booming.
With growth also comes the necessity to improve areas of our businesses to be more efficient and better serve our customers. Many of you that work with us have seen some new things happening at VirtuActive this year. My goal in this newsletter is to share those things and the WHY behind the implementation of these improvements.
Here we go!
1. Welcome Packets
By now, you and your clients have become accustomed to our Welcome Packets. We include this with every new project and the intention is to explain VirtuActive’s process, pricing, and timelines. Setting proper expectations to all is one of the keys to a successful experience and outcome. That is the purpose in sending the Welcome Packet each and every time. As we progress into the second quarter, we are in the process of finalizing Welcome Packets for all of our products as well as a product offering sheet to help clarify our product offerings. You will see these all rolling out soon!
2. Order Forms
Many of you have seen these “order forms” start to be introduced this year. This is by far the biggest improvement we will make this year. It will lessen the back and forth of information gathering when onboarding projects, assist us in assigning the appropriate designers/drafters to work on your projects, and most importantly ensure we meet the turn times and quality of work you have come to expect of us by allowing us to manage our capacity.
We have been testing these this year and I want to THANK YOU for being patient with us
as we have inserted these into our process. You will be happy to know that we have
improved these so you do NOT have to download them and fill them out anymore!
The new order forms are very user friendly and all in an electronic form. You can fill them
out on your phone or your laptop. You can even attach files and inspiration to them.
I know these may feel like an extra step, but I promise that they WILL make everything
operate more smoothly. They don’t take more than 1-2 minutes to complete. We will have these for every product and will require them to schedule meetings. Please, please, EMBRACE them. They are a necessity to allow us to better serve YOU!
3. Alexa who? We have BRITTANY!
One of the most exciting additions to our team this year is our new Admin Assistant, Brittany. Brittany is absolutely amazing and will be your main point of contact for scheduling your clients and projects with us. She will be extremely responsive in answering any questions you have and in getting your Welcome Packets and Order Forms to you. Once she receives the submitted order form, she will check our capacity calculator and get you our soonest available dates to get you scheduled. She is also taking all that information and setting up your projects for our designer/drafters, allowing more time for them to work on your projects and less time doing administrative work. Please welcome Brittany! She is incredible and will do all she can to get your projects onboarded seamlessly and correctly!
4. Immediate Projects vs Scheduled Projects
As I referenced in our previous newsletter, one big transition we made this year was segmenting our company with unique departments to better serve you. We have a 3D Dept, a Design (Customs Plans) Dept, a Drafting Dept, and a B.A.R. (Basement, Remodel, Addition) Dept. With the creation of these departments it allows us to onboard certain projects/services differently.
Many of our “Volume” builders can send their plans to our Drafting Dept for minor mods to base plans, minor plan mods, site plans, and RESchecks knowing they will be able to turn around your project requests in under 5 business days, many times within 2-3 business days.
When it comes to Custom Plans, new Specs, moderate to major plan modifications, Remodels, Additions, Basements, and 3D conceptual work for the Residential and Commercial
sector, we schedule all those products using our capacity calculator.
In creating these Departments and identifying the difference in products that can be
assigned immediately vs those that must be scheduled we can service all of you
better while maintaining the timelines and experience you have all come
to value us for.
5. Scheduling Wait Time
I hope by relaying the information above, it helps to better understand the work we are doing daily to best serve you. One area that I know has been a pain point has been the length of time to schedule Initial Design Meetings for custom home clients as well as Basement/Addition/Remodel on-site initial design meetings. We have added 6 team members so far this year, and will continue to add more. Our team has grown from 8 team members last January to 25 team members as of this newsletter. All of this is to better support and serve you. We are working to reduce the length of time for scheduling you and your clients and promise you we are doing everything we can to solve this. We ask for your continued patience and appreciate the fantastic job each of you are doing in setting expectations for your clients in how incredibly busy our industry is. Just as you cannot schedule all of your client’s homes to begin next week, we cannot schedule all of our client's designs to begin next week.
I want to thank each and every one of you for your business and for respecting us as much more than just a drafting and design service, but a valued partner. Our entire team works hard every day to serve you and our leadership team is constantly striving to improve our processes and your experience with us.