Why “value engineering” an av technology solution can be short sighted
Any of you that have worked with me or any of the konnectus team, you’ll know that we spend good amount of time early on the project, really trying to get to know our customers and understand their needs and what it is that their pain points are, their aspirations. And then we sort of come up with some technology solutions and then concepts that were going to fit exactly what they’re looking for. And part of this process is putting together very detailed Cost Estimates of what that initial investment is going to be. And that is what I want to talk to you today a little bit about.
So, that initial investment, let’s take an example, let say 200 thousand dollars with a particular customer or particular project. And quite often I get the response back “Well that’s a lot of money. That’s probably outside our budget or what we are thinking. Can we start to pay back on this value engineering?”, that’s a very common word. And that’s fine, I totally understand working to budgets, you don’t be overspending or overcommitting yourself. However, I think it’s important to realise that there is more than the initial investment that needs to be considered and a lot of you watching will agree that is not nothing new but we’ll just go through some of the things that maybe specific to AV and then Technology projects.
The first obvious one is if you have systems that are design very simply and don’t have a lot of complexity or they’re not over engineered, then they’re reliable and if they’re reliable over a long period of their life, say 5 plus years, the cost to maintain them is low. And that should be considered in your picture of assessing cost.
Secondly, you want to look at how easy it is to use these systems? If they’re really easy to use and you can avoid those embarrassing situations of wasting time trying to get the technology up and running, that has a cost as well. It’s been of a hidden cost. Not just cost of time but the cost of embarrassment of putting the people on the back foot and they’re not feeling confident, they’re not feeling good about themselves and that could cost money if especially you’d be doing important presentations or some important show in an entertainment venue. It’ll all sort of accumulates.
Another thing that is really quite not always considered is what I would say the “WOW” factor. This is not for all projects, this is not in most projects but definitely, if you’re trying to make some sort of an impression or create an experience for customers or people that either using or enjoying these AV systems, I think it’s important to have something that’s a little bit extra, a little bit more exciting. And that’s a little bit more expensive to start off with the initial cost. But over the long term, you could read back the benefits in terms of creating that brand, creating that experience, people are talking about it. That sort of bringing cost. Maybe not bringing cost down but bringing money potentially back to repay for that initial outlay.
The last point is, uptake of use of the new technology. And that’s really important. I have not met a customer, so far, that I’ve worked with that has not really been focused on getting the uptake of this new technology as high as possible. That’s the whole purpose, isn’t it? To invest in the technology so that the people that are using it will use it and have better outcomes in whatever it is that they do whether it’d be in business, or in education, or in legal, or whatever field they’re in. So, that’s really it.
I hope those tips will help you on your next future project when you’re assessing cost. Don’t just look at the initial upfront ticket price. Consider all other items that make up the bigger picture of cost. It’s more of an investment over the long term and good luck with it.
If there’s anything we could help you with on your next project, feel free to reach out. Thank you!