“Value engineering” has many negative connotations, especially in the world of solar control. When most people hear it, they immediately think only of making a product that is less expensive to produce, often at the expense of quality.

When value engineering was first developed at General Electric during World War II, cutting costs was only part of the equation. The process was meant to increase the value of a product by either making it better at the same cost or by reducing costs without impacting performance. There was a real need for value engineering due to material and parts shortages. Substitutes were necessary, and many times they proved cheaper and better than the original.

But you have a budget, and you need to stick to it. But value is about more than just price. Often, NOT going with a less expensive option adds value.

Here are four ways Draper can help you add value to your clients’ projects without impacting performance:

Don’t scrimp on fabric.
One popular cost-saving “opportunity” we hear is the use of less expensive shade fabric. That is not value engineering the project. While cheaper shade fabrics do have their place, using them can reduce the overall value of the shading solution.

Draper works with domestic fabric suppliers Phifer and Mermet USA to provide high-performing shades that impact the client’s bottom line. Here are a couple of examples:

Metalized-backed fabrics such as Phifer Performance Plus and Mermet Chroma eliminate disagreeable glare, control atmosphere luminosity, and preserve natural light for the benefit of work area comfort. The metalized backing allows dark colors to perform like light colors in solar heat reduction.

KOOLBLACK® Technology from Mermet incorporates reflective properties into dark color screen fabrics, creating up to 23% improvement in solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) / G Value versus standard dark screen fabrics. Now you can have the superior view through of dark colors with the heat and glare control of light colors without the need for duplex fabrics.

Some solutions can multi-task.
Exterior advertising and digital signage can be costly. Graphic shades can help you make use of a “free” commodity: windows. Whether using a single window or spreading a message across a bank of them, graphic shades can be printed with your eye-catching artwork and snappy messages to get attention and help with wayfinding, while also reducing glare and solar heat gain for a more comfortable, productive work environment.

Durability creates repeat customers.
Cheaper substitutes can lead to durability issues. Nobody wants a solution that works for a while then falls apart or stops working.

Draper strives to use the best components possible. We use metal rollers and create our own steel hardware pieces in our Spiceland factory. We then finish them with a textured powder coat. While powder coating in general is durable, the textured coat is even more resistant to scuffs and scrapes during delivery and installation and won’t show fingerprints or other surface marks.

We invest in quality.
Small fabric imperfections or manufacturing errors can lead to project delays, increasing labor costs and upsetting your customer.

Draper utilizes thorough quality inspections. Every shade component is hand checked and every completed shade is individually tested by a Draper employee to ensure smooth operation. Mesh fabric shades are also backlit to check for imperfections. Draper is one of the few window covering manufacturers that inspects and operates every shade prior to packing.

Returns due to quality issues or fabric imperfections have been reduced by quality inspections of every shade before it ships.

For Draper, value engineering isn’t just about making something cheaper. It’s about making it more valuable to your client and adding to your bottom line.

To learn more about Draper’s value-adding shading solutions, click here.

To contact your Draper representative and find out how we can add value to your next project, click here.