Experience and the Imagination Panel
By Garrod Massey
There are seven people on our Quoting Team, and between us, we have 140 years of experience! That’s a lot of panels over the years. Even with all of this experience, when a quote comes into UCEC, we approach it like a team. We know our customers need their quotes back quickly. We don’t want to make them wait—time is definitely of the essence in the panel world.
Other things are riding on a timely quote, too: Our Production team needs some runway time so they can schedule the newest panel projects. Assigning the correct team members to new projects takes finesse, and when quotes are moving through our team, we are making sure Production has enough time to do what they do. Parts are another important detail. We want to make sure we have the parts for the project or that we can order and receive them without delay.
We’ve recently added quoting to our project management software. This shift from paper and email is nothing but great for our customers. It assures that every quote gets entered into our queue and assigned to a team. Nothing slips through the cracks and we can all follow the project from step to step.
On our Assembly and Wiring teams, the work is definitely team-based but ultimately one person does a certain job to move the panel to the next stage in the process. Over in Quoting, it’s truly “all hands on deck” as Bruce, Terry, Paul, Bob, Dani, Brenda and I work off of a Google Sheet, choosing proper equipment and getting pricing in a short time period.
It’s in Your Head
The way I look at it, to do quoting correctly, you have to have two skills on your team: a deep experience building and wiring panels plus a really good imagination.
When a quote comes in, there may be details such as a Bill of Materials (BOM) and a schematic. Or there may be none of these. At this point, the panel exists only on paper, so we have to build it in our mind.
I share an office with Terry. Bob and Paul are right across the hall from each other. Brenda and Dani talk back and forth, comparing parts and prices. Evan Coulter and John Beattie weigh in on pricing and offer feedback (that’s another 40-plus years of experience!). We work together, pulling the quote into shape. We have to imagine the box, the assembly, components and if it’s UL listed or not. You have to imagine the entire project. We like to give a quote one time. We’re not in the business of quoting low to get the job and then raising the price with endless change orders. It’s One Quote. One Price here.
If you’ve ever wondered what’s happening behind the scenes when you request a quote, this is the answer: a lot! But we know at the end of the day, our customers are getting a fair and accurate quote. We bring that 140 years of panel experience to ensure your panel quote is correct.
Garrod is an Operations Support Manager at UCEC.
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