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Making Sure Customers Love Their New Spaces – The Design-Build Experience

Making Sure Customers Love Their New Spaces – The Design-Build Experience

GVSU Marketplace Designers and Owners

GVSU Marketplace Designers and Owners

r.o.i. Design knows that the customers experience of the design-build process will predict whether or not they will love their new space. It is so much more than having the perfect design or the “expert consultant” on the job.

When there is a great design-build team the outcome has a much greater chance of meeting and exceeding customer expectation of the finished product. There aren’t layers of concern and stress laid on top of the customer-team relationship, making the customer suspect and wary if they are going to get what was promised them or not.

A great design team also means efficiency which saves everyone budget dollars.

  • When there is trust between team members it accelerates the customer’s confidence in all recommendations where ever they come from.
  • When simple oversights are managed before they become a crisis or trigger change orders, customers are saved the awkward experience of finger pointing between team members.
  • Real time communication is ongoing and a shared responsibility between owners, designers and contractors that is supported by protocol documentation verses solely relying on “the system”.
  • Trust creates an attitude of flexibility in the process which allows great ideas and solutions to surface anytime in the process. When a design criteria is well understood and all parties buy in, it is only ego that keeps good ideas from being executed.

r.o.i. Design strives to be part of great design-build teams. For us that has happened when:

  • Jobs we share could have started with any one of the groups, whether it is the contractor’s customer, the architect’s customer or our customer, we communicate to the customer early in the process who the team is and how we would like to work with them.
  • Roles on a job are defined and respected, even when the customer challenges the structure, we represent the team.
  • Building and maintaining relationships is everyone’s priority.

This week a manufacturing customer, remodeling a floor in their facility to create an innovation center commented to r.o.i. Design, “So you guys actually get along with this construction company. Our last remodeling project was a nightmare – the designer, architect and contractor kept blaming each other. They won’t ever be back.”



The new Rylee’s ACE West Fulton: the 49504 CAMPAIGN

The new Rylee’s ACE West Fulton: the 49504 CAMPAIGN

Lori Terpstra, owner of Rylees ACE and friend of r.o.i. Design, asked us to design the exterior of their new store at 1205 West Fulton last spring. (2012) “It has to perfect for the West Side, not too fancy, but definitely friendly. We are a hardware store and we have to look like one.” was the directive last year.

At the business open house on February 27,  Lori was heard talking to neighboring business owners saying, “We love our new store and we love the West Side”10-x-3-Now-Open-banner

r.o.i. Design was also asked to manage the 49504 marketing campaign for the six weeks prior to the soft opening. (more…)

Remodeling of Kennedy Floral and Gifts in Grand Rapids MI

Remodeling of Kennedy Floral and Gifts in Grand Rapids MI

Lori and Jack Haveman called r.o.i. Design in the summer of 2012, they got our name from architect Don Smalligan. And it turns out 20 plus years ago our previous company, Designers Workshop, made their exterior sign!

Pre-Remodeling Store Interior

We met and found we worked well with their team and we were engaged to plan their store remodel. They were taking on more space and looked to create better offices, floral design areas, and additional retail floor space.  We collaborated with them and came up with a plan that looked to address all their needs.

Through the process we had a unique “find”. Looking for a natural loft look, TonTin Lumber had some reclaimed Ash that was beautiful. They purchased from the city of Grand Rapids the trees that had been taken down because of the “Ash Borer”. The new room is lined with this Ash and the ceiling is clad with maple plywood.

And keeping with the theme “Girls just want to have fun”, a hot pink was incorporated in key areas. It compliments the Vera Bradley displays and makes all the green floral stuff, pop!

We introduced them to Pinnacle Construction, who bid the work around Labor Day. They said they could get the work done by the first week of November.  We knew they could do it and encouraged Kennedy to hire them and start the process. Everyone else they talked to said they were crazy, no one could remodel a whole store in 10 weeks and stay open!

A few dozen design changes, and a few “whoops”, the remodel was 95% by their Holiday Open House November 15, 2012. Looks great!

New Cash Counter in use October 28