Making the Change

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thinking of Making the Change?

 

Whether your window fabrication company is well established or just starting out, the process of choosing a uPVC window and door profile supplier can be daunting. There are many factors to consider before embarking on a long-term relationship. That's why Liniar has put together a guide, based on real customer feedback, in order to help you find your way through the decision making process.

Please click on the headers below to find a range of areas to consider, and view the guide in full below. You can also order a copy of ‘Making the Change’ in brochure format - please email marketing@liniar.co.uk.

Ask a potential systems company whether it has a clear focus on sustainability.

Why it’s important:

This is one is all about ‘doing the right thing’ – for the planet, for our communities and for the environment. A system company should have clear sustainability objectives – because consumers are more educated now than ever about the impact of products they purchase on the environment.

Ask questions such as: Does your company have a zero operational wastage record? What is the scrap rate and where does your scrap go? Are you ISO14001 accredited?

All these things are important because your potential customers will be asking about the sustainability of the products you fabricate – and if you’re an installer, the ones you’re fitting into properties.

How Liniar works:

With a zero operational waste record for nearly three decades, Liniar is committed to sustainability. Liniar’s manufacturing premises includes an on-site recycling facility which turns extrusion offcuts into fully or partially recycled products and an underground water recycling facility – leaving absolutely nothing to waste. Accredited with ISO14001 in 2018, Liniar signed a Climate Change Agreement with the Environment Agency and has already surpassed targets by more than 63%.

Read more about Liniar’s sustainability initiatives at www.liniar.co.uk/sustainability/.

Ask your systems company if it can demonstrate its daily ‘On Time, In Full’ delivery status.

Why it’s important:

The ability to have your products delivered when you need them is crucial. Without a reliable profile source, your business is affected, and you risk letting down your own customers.

Ask to see systems companies’ daily delivery statistics over a specific period of time, that way you can assess whether its service is reliable. You could also ask existing customers how they find dealing with them.

How Liniar works:

With a 99% On Time, In Full delivery record, Liniar can provide delivery statistics on all deliveries to back up its claims. Investment in stock means products are on the shelf, ready to deliver – and Liniar uses its own vehicle fleet to deliver from its base in Derbyshire to customers throughout UK and Ireland.

Liniar’s logistics team works tirelessly to ensure deliveries are on time and in full, every time.

Ask your systems company how many patents and Registered Designs it holds.

Why it’s important:

Registered Designs and patents indicate a systems company is forward-thinking, innovative and has made significant investment into its product development. It also puts products using those Registered Designs and patents into a category of exclusivity – giving fabricators who can offer those products a significant advantage.

How Liniar works:

Liniar has 52 Registered Designs and patents across its entire range of products, from windows and doors to conservatories and its outdoor range. With many more patents pending, Liniar’s Design and Development team strives to bring to market cutting-edge, UK-first products which enhance security, thermal efficiency whilst making lives easier for fabricators and installers.

Ask your systems company if it develops award-winning products at the highest level.

Why it’s important:

Whilst awards may not seem important when choosing a systems company, they show a company’s investment and innovation in product development – which means industry-leading products for you to offer to your customers.

Other benefits of award-winning systems companies including longevity, sustainability and manufacturing excellence – so look for these logos when you’re researching systems companies.

How Liniar works:

Since launching its flagship profile in 2008, Liniar has won a multitude of awards, including the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation in 2017 for its ModLok™ technology in its unique bi-folding doors and New Product of the Year in 2019 at the NFAs for Resurgence, the UK’s first PVCu double-rebated flush sash window.

Discover all of Liniar’s awards at www.liniar.co.uk/awards/.

Ask your systems company if they have a culture of swift decision making.

Why it’s important:

Red tape is never good for any business, and waiting for months is the last thing you need when trying to get an answer to your query. Complicated organisational structures can hinder even the smallest questions getting answers, adversely affecting your operations.

Ask your systems company what kind of structure it has and what the decision making process is – often, a complex structure has arisen due to historical growth of the company and many layers in management can mean unwanted delays.

How Liniar works:

Liniar boasts a flat management structure with an ethos of putting customers first. This allows the Senior Management Team to make and communicate decisions quickly, without the double and triple checks of a more bureaucratic structure. We recognise the need to be proactive and make decisions when they’re effective, making life easier for fitters and fabricators.

Ask your systems company if ‘innovation’ is ingrained in its DNA.

Why it’s important:

Innovation can be described as “The process of translating an idea or invention into a good or service that creates value”. The word itself is often overused, especially in our industry, but innovation at its peak will offer you a high-quality range of products and services you can access to add value to your own customers.

Innovation doesn’t stop there – as well as industry-leading products, innovation show be visible in every aspect of a systems company – from operational efficient – whether they produce and hold enough stock to satisfy last-minute requirements – to pushing for better service and finding new ways to make its fabricators and fitters more successful.

How Liniar works:

Innovation is at the very heart of everything Liniar does – in fact, we claim its part of our very DNA. Every single member of our team strives for the best possible outcome in all areas, even if that means re-examining what we do on a daily basis and changing it to be more efficient, more successful.

Ask a potential systems company whether it’s strong and if it’s regularly invested over the years to support customer service.

Why it’s important:

Without a comprehensive focus on investment, systems companies are unable to provide world-class customer support, marketing materials, superb service and consistently excellent products. With regular high investment in machinery, plant, people, product development and research, and on the business as a whole, a systems company is more likely to be stable and with fabricators for the long haul.

How Liniar works:

With an annual investment of approximately £10m per year from its parent company Quanex, all of which goes into product design, the latest and most efficient machinery, people, innovation, plant, sustainability and methodology, Liniar is able to provide a stable operation, focused on customers.

For more information about Liniar’s annual investment, visit www.liniar.co.uk/about/history.

Ask your systems company if they invest in stock to keep products on the shelf for you.

Why it’s important:

Reliability of your supply chain is essential to your efficiency and profitability. Ensuring your systems company retains extensive investment in stock for fast delivery as well as a stable supply of raw materials and bought in goods, means that even throughout any turmoil – including Brexit – your operations won’t be affected by lack of stock or delayed delivery.

How Liniar works:

With a fully stocked 178,000ft² warehouse and multi-million pound investment into raw materials, finished goods and stock, Liniar can satisfy all commitments to customers, provide consistent on time, in full deliveries and work with the entire supply chain to plan for any eventualities.

As an example, read how Liniar has prepared for Brexit at www.liniar.co.uk/Brexit/.

Ask whether your systems company has an in-house foiling and lamination department.

Why it’s important:

In-house foiling means your systems house will have shorter lead times on their coloured profiles and have the ability to ensure the quality of the foiled finish, reacting quickly to any potential quality issues.

If they do have in-house foiling, ask whether they invest in new, efficient machinery, what their waste records are on primer and how efficient their operations are. With sustainability at the forefront of many minds, including the property owners, it’s important that the entire uPVC supply chain is as environmentally friendly as possible.

How Liniar works:

Thanks to its comprehensive investment in plant, Liniar boasts an extensive in-house foiling facility with industry-leading machinery which is fast and efficient. Top of the line machinery means more foiled profile production, using only the exact amount of primer needed – for less waste and energy costs. Liniar’s foiling operation continually reduces its carbon footprint while putting more coloured, foiled products into stock for its fabricators.

Ask your systems company what the overall cost of a window is, including hardware, glazing and spacer bar.

Why it’s important:

When choosing a systems house cost is always a factor, but analysing the full cost instead of just the cost of the profile is important. When trying to achieve higher Window Energy Ratings, high quality profiles allow for a lower specification of glazing compared to other systems.

Assess more than just the like-for-like price. Explore the overall cost of fabrication for a full-sized window, including all parts of a finished product i.e. hardware, glazing and spacer bar, as well as labour costs. This is the only way a true comparison can be made.

How Liniar works:

We recognise that Liniar profile is more expensive, per metre, than other uPVC systems. This is because we have patented innovations which go into our products, as well as the modern machinery used to extrude profiles. The Liniar system is designed with reduced reinforcement which often times requires a lower specification of glazing to reach high WERs and low U-values – both of which can contribute to overall cost savings when fabricating.

Does your systems house put you, the customer, first?

Why it’s important:

The cornerstone of any successful business is putting the customer at the heart of everything they do. Though it’s said many times during the ‘courtship’ phase, how many times are you often left to discover it isn’t actually true once business commences?

Look at your systems company’s customer service records, including ease of ordering and availability of stock, providing customers with what they need when they need it. Additionally, check if they provide world-class support for the products you’ll be fabricating – because in the end it’s essential to your business.

How Liniar works:

Liniar’s ethos involves always ‘doing the right thing’ and that includes putting customers first. Liniar’s products are designed with the fabricator and fitter in mind, investment in stock is in the multi-million pounds to ensure there’s plenty on the shelf and its teams design new, innovative products on a regular basis – whilst providing comprehensive technical and marketing support along the way.

Do some research and find out what a systems company’s current fabricators have to say.

Why it’s important:

Word of mouth has always been the best (and most honest) form of advertising. The age of social media has made it very easy to find out how a company is performing – but it isn’t the only way.

Ask your systems company whether they’ve recently carried out a customer satisfaction survey like the Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey – and if so, what the latest result is. The NPS survey measures customer experience and provides an overall perception of a brand based on one simple question…’On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this company to your family and friends?’

Most global brands conduct an NPS survey annually. Find out more about the Net Promoter Score by visiting https://www.liniar.co.uk/news/liniar-achieves-nps-excellence/.

How Liniar works:

In 2019, Liniar conducted a survey across its whole customer base – and the results were fantastic. The overall NPS was a +69, one point short of ‘world class’. Liniar’s survey responses allowed teams to learn many things and to tweak elements to make customer support and service even better.

One important take away? 93% of Liniar fabricators said the company was easy to work with.

Ask your systems company if it has a motivated team to support its customers.

Why it’s important:

The support from your systems company is integral in making your business successful. Your systems company can provide everything from technical fabrication details to support ensuring deliveries are received on time, in full.

Additionally, your systems company will allow you to use its facilities with your own customers and provide training to make your sales team more successful. It’s also important that your systems company listens to suggestions and works to ensure products are easy for you to fabricate and sell to your customers.

How Liniar works:

Here at Liniar customer support doesn’t stop with your sales representative – you’ll meet the entire team from every part of our business. This includes drivers who consistently receive excellent reviews from fabricators for going above and beyond, designers providing technical information and calculations, technical experts to advise and help plan your optimal factory layout and so much more.

Ask your systems company if they provide tender opportunities for commercial and new build projects.

Why it’s important:

UK housebuilders and developers create product specifications for the glazed products they purchase for their sites. In order to be included on these, some systems companies liaise directly with procurement teams, and as a result receive tenders for sites all over the UK.

If you supply into the new build or refurbishment sectors, whether fabricating or installing, you could be receiving a steady stream of tender opportunities from your systems company.

How Liniar works:

We have a dedicated commercial focus, developing relationships with the UK’s major housebuilders, developers and architects to ensure our products are specified. You could be included on tenders received by Liniar for the areas you cover, giving you leads in this sector.

Ask your systems company if they have a 24/7 online ordering facility.

Why it’s important:

Fabricators are busy people. Often times they don’t have the time to sit down, fill out order forms and then fax them to their systems company – all during office hours. Online ordering is key for flexibility, giving you the power to add items you need, when it’s convenient to you – via mobile, at any time of day, every day of the year.

Ask your systems company whether this is something they offer and how it works. For instance, will you be able to order both stocked and ‘made-to-order’ items online, view and download previous orders, delivery notes and invoices and how user friendly their service is.

How Liniar works:

LiniarConnect was launched in 2019 and brings online shopping to Liniar fabricators. Customers have their own secure hub to see previous orders, order by favourites, item codes or descriptions and even order ‘made-to-order’ products. With several levels of user access, it’s easy to use and you can keep adding to your basket throughout the week and it will all be saved in your basket, ready to check out when you are.

Ask your systems company if its profile was designed from scratch, around a co-extruded gasket.

Why it’s important:

When you’re looking to purchase something, would you rather it be brand new or something refurbished? A product which has been around for a few decades, with a few enhancements – or a product which was designed only a few years ago, using the latest technology?

Many systems companies are using the same profile they brought to market more than two decades ago. Over the years, they’ve made some more improvements, but a few have started from scratch with brand new ideas, technology and machinery.

How Liniar works:

The 70mm Liniar system was designed by industry experts with over 500 years’ experience to bring fresh perspective, creating a choice of standard or EnergyPlus profiles with chamfered or sculptured styling, exceeding the expectations of fabricators, fitters and property owners.

Discover the Liniar 70mm range at www.liniar.co.uk/windows/.

Ask your systems company if its profile was designed from scratch, around a co-extruded gasket.

Why it’s important:

A systems company which provides its fitters and fabricators with a fully matching suite of windows, doors and conservatories, along with fascia, soffits, cladding and an innovative outdoor range of decking, fencing and piling is superb.

These additional products allow you to offer your customers added extras – with a single point of guarantee. Why worry about sourcing products from multiple suppliers – risking a mismatched installation?

How Liniar works:

Liniar listens to customer feedback and designs products based on market demand, that’s why we have one of the largest bespoke ranges in the industry – and it’s available solely to Liniar customers. Not only that, but Liniar customers benefit from a single point of supply and guarantee, streamlining the purchase decision.

View the full Liniar range at www.liniar.co.uk.

 

Ask your systems company if its range includes a wide choice of colour options.

Why it’s important:

Simply white PVCu windows, doors and conservatories are a thing of the past. A systems company with a diverse range of available colours and finishes in stock means you can offer a wide range of choice to your customers.

An in-house, well-equipped lamination facility on-site also allows for rapid response times on ‘made-to-order’ products, ensuring fabricators can offer customers product which suit their individual tastes.

How Liniar works:

With an on-site, state-of-the-art lamination facility on-site Liniar has the ability to stock foils in wide variety of colours and finishes. New colours are added to the range as popularity for them grows and customers always have the ability to offer practically any colour on a made-to-order basis – most of which are within a 5-day lead time (additional charges may apply).

Ask your systems company if they offer a PassivHaus certified window.

Why it’s important:

PassivHaus certification means the product has met rigorous energy efficiency targets – reducing a building’s carbon footprint. This certification is now required by some councils and buildings, such as social housing.

The PassivHaus Institute will only certify the most innovative windows and doors, so the ability to offer this to your customers put you above the competition in those particular sectors.

How Liniar works:

Liniar’s EnergyPlus90 nine chamber system was the first uPVC window in the UK to be PassivHaus certified. The EP90 range boasts U-values as low as 0.5 W/m²K with PAS24 and Secured by Design accreditation. It’s also World Health Organisation compliant, meaning it reduces noise up to 42 decibels, ideal for urban living.

View the EnergyPlus90 range at www.liniar.co.uk/upvc-windows/passivhaus/.

Ask your systems company if it designs its products with all levels of customer in mind.

Why it’s important:

If all customers including fitters and fabricators needs aren’t taken into account when new products are at the design stage, the finished result isn’t likely to fulfil everyone’s requirements. Similarly, products which appeal to the end user, be it developer or property owner, in order to be successful.

Ask your systems company if they collaborate with fabricators, installers and machinery companies to make products easier to manufacture and install, as well as making them aesthetically pleasing, thermally efficient and environmentally friendly.

How Liniar works:

Fitters and fabricators are the foundation of our business, which is why all Liniar products are designed to make their lives easier. From Liniar’s patented ‘Glazing Stop’ which prevents glass slippage when glazing roofs, to a collaboration to create the UK’s first uPVC double-rebate flush sash window, Resurgence, all products are simple to manufacture and effortless to fit.

Ask your systems company if they offer a fully matching outdoor product range for your customers.

Why it’s important:

By offering more than windows, doors and conservatories, your able to differentiate yourself from other companies – think fully matching outdoor range.

Installers able to cross-sell with products such as decking allows them to provide a complete solution to their customer’s needs. For a homeowner this results in less disruption and a single point of guarantee – and could make the difference in winning a job and improving sales growth.

How Liniar works:

The Liniar outdoor range includes uPVC and composite decking and fencing, as well as fully recycled piling and retention. These ranges come in a variety of colours and the decking balustrades can even be foiled to match windows. Durable, low-maintenance and available in made-to-order kits, the Liniar outdoor range is a simple, cost-effective add-on for your customers.

View the full Liniar outdoor range at https://www.liniar.co.uk/outdoor-range/.

Ask your systems company if their testing is done on full-sized products.

Why it’s important:

Design, development and testing to hand in hand when creating products that stand the test of time, are safe and are fit for purpose. If a systems company has comprehensive investment in all three areas, they’re able to launch UK-first products, exclusive to its fabricators.

Testing of products used in construction is crucial to ensure they’re safe, secure, stable and durable. If you’re relying on your systems company’s test results, ensure that all British Standard Institute (BSI) testing has been carried out on full size products – not the bare minimum size – for your own peace of mind when selling to customers.

How Liniar works:

Liniar has comprehensive investment in design and product development which includes testing. With a cyclic testing robot on-site testing the durability of opening mechanisms, Liniar guarantees that every single maximum size cited in its fabrication and technical manuals has been fully tested by third parties such as the BSI – giving you peace of mind.

How quickly can a window be produced in your facility?

Why it’s important:

Time is money. If you could reduce your manufacturing time by half, what would it mean in terms of productivity and staffing levels at your facility?

Ask your systems company if its finished products were designed with fabricators in mind – streamlining the fabrication process, ultimately saving you time and money. Explore how long it takes with different systems and consider how this may affect your future profitability.

How Liniar works:

Requiring two-thirds less steal than a standard GGF window with no loss in strength, Liniar’s windows not only save time in order, storing, cutting and fixing steel into frames, but also provides additional cost-savings to fabricators as well. Compared to competitor products, Liniar’s windows can be fabricated in up to half the time.

Ask your systems company if its CORGI Fenestration registered.

Why it’s important:

The CORGI Fenestration Scheme is the most comprehensive in the industry. It not only certifies the entire operation including Building Regulation compliance but also the whole end-to-end produce process – including design, manufacture, installation and repair of fenestration products – along with a range of additional benefits for fabricators and fitters.

If a systems company isn’t CORGI Fenestration registered how can a homeowner have faith in its products?

How Liniar works:

In 2017, Liniar became the first systems company to be CORGI Fenestration registered. Through our Liniar Approved fabricator programme, you can also become CORGI Fenestration registered through a reduced audit saving you time and money – and giving you and your customers a peace of mind that the products you manufacture are certified to the highest quality.

Visit https://www.liniar.co.uk/corgi/ for more information on CORGI Fenestration and Liniar.

Ask your systems company if they have an on-site technical support team.

Why it’s important:

An on-site technical team offers several advantages including rapid response rates to your queries, better educated technicians and the ability to quickly resolve issues.
Third-party technicians or contractors have several disadvantages, including not having a firm grasp on specific fabrication techniques, customer needs, setups or the installation of products. Waiting for answers on technical queries could mean losing or winning a job – so having someone at your disposal to answer queries straight away is an advantage.

How Liniar works:

Our technical team is comprised of industry experts, working together with Design and Development, extrusion and our sister company, Avantek Machinery, to ensure they can quickly answer your queries and provide unrivalled levels of support.

The technical team also advises on fabrication setups, carries out Liniar Approved audits and has a hand in helping to shape new products based on customer feedback – making fabricator and fitter’s lives easier.

Ask your systems company if they provide a system with increased noise reduction.

Why it’s important:

Recently, the World Health Organisation implemented a series of guidelines for building contractors and construction companies to follow when working on specific buildings, i.e. student accommodation and elderly homes.

These guidelines address noise pollution levels and with the increased use of brownfield sites for housing development, acoustics solutions are critical. Ask your systems company if they offer a window system which meets these guidelines.

How Liniar works:

Our 70mm EnergyPlus system meets noise pollution standards set by the WHO, and the Liniar 90mm PassivHaus systems far exceeds those specifications with noise reduction up to 42 decibels.

View the Liniar EnergyPlus and EnergyPlus90 PassivHaus ranges at https://www.liniar.co.uk/upvc-windows/.

Ask your systems company if its marketing and PR team are in-house.

Why it’s important:

In-house marketing translates into exceptional support for fabricators in marketing and selling to their own customers. Not only does an internal team allow for greater creative control, it also means a firm grasp of product knowledge and an understanding of your target market and how to sell them, with faster response rates than agencies.

An in-house team can work closely with fabricators to produce case studies and arrange photography, website content and social media, maximising your marketing potential.

How Liniar works:

Our in-house marketing team works to help fabricators every step of the way. With ongoing product and brand advertising and editorial coverage, digital marketing advice, website content creation, a range of literature – including homeowner and technical focused content, Liniar customers have a history of growth when working alongside the Liniar PR and Marketing team.

Ask your systems company if they can provide you measurable leads.

Why it’s important:

There’s a difference between leads and leads you can measure. Does your systems company provide you with a platform to track generated leads and keep a record of all that have come to you from them?

Leads coming directly from a systems company can boost your business with customers who know what they’re looking for and are ready to make a purchase.

How Liniar works:

Our ‘Find a Stockist’ website feature was developed to provide website visitors with the details of Liniar Approved stockists in their area. Liniar Approved fabricators and stockists are listed with their contact details and Google reviews, enabling visitors to make an informed choice. You’ll have access to an online portal to manage those leads; you can contact customers directly, mark leads as won or lost and create follow-up tasks.

View the Find a Stockist feature by visiting https://www.liniar.co.uk/stockists/.

Ask your systems company if you’ll have access to a high-quality media library.

Why it’s important:

Having access to a regularly updated, high-quality media centre, 24/7 is crucial. Not only can you access collateral you can use in your own marketing materials, but also select images to use on your own website at the click of a mouse.

Professional quality images of the products you fabricate provides customer confidence in your business, as well as giving them an idea of what they could achieve with their own properties and projects. In addition, you may wish to include literature on your own website and access this content whenever you need it.

How Liniar works:

We provide our fabricators with access to the comprehensive Liniar online media centre. You’ll receive log-in details for this in your Liniar Welcome Pack. Within our media centre, you’ll find high resolution images of products, installations and renders. There are PDFs of brochures, newsletters, technical specifications and wall charts, together with a fully comprehensive Sales Guide – making it easy for you to manufacture and sell Liniar products. We’ve even included marketing resources to help you get to grips with social media and other marketing channels.

View the Liniar Media Centre by visiting https://www.liniar.co.uk/media-centre-login/.

Ask your systems company if they offer website support and advice.

Why it’s important:

Your website is an extension of your physical fabrication operation and should represent what you can offer to your customers. If your website is out of date, it can create a negative impression of your business – and if you can’t find it near the top of the Google search results, it’s probably not working hard enough for you.

Sure, you can pay for expert web advice – but often times, your systems company has the expertise to review your site and carry out an analysis to make sure it represents your brand and business well online.

How Liniar works:

We work with our customers to analyse the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), site speed and other critical aspects of their website, pointing out areas for their website developer to focus on for the most impact.

We can even introduce you to a website developer, fully trained in Liniar products, drastically cutting down the time (and cost) involved in building a new website if you need one. Liniar can also provide advice on social media and pay per click (PPC) campaigns which help drive traffic and new business to your website.

Ask your systems company whether it invests in brand promotion for your benefit.

Why it’s important:

Marketing is a mix between long-term brand positioning and short to medium-term promotions and campaigns – and the best systems companies understand this. If your systems company regularly invests in promoting its brand and products within the marketplace this will in turn benefit customers who fabricate these ranges.

The window supply chain is complex, so a good understanding of target markets is essential – from architect and developers to homeowners and installers. The audience is more well-informed now than they ever have been, thanks to the power of the internet – so it’s important to provide information for all levels of the supply chain.

How Liniar works:

Liniar invests many £thousands each month in the promotion of its main brand, product ranges and sub-brands including Alumina, Resurgence and Elevate – both in print and online. This helps with brand recognition in the marketplace, and includes videos, guides and helpful information our customers can use. PPC ads help with short-term campaigns alongside social media, PR and editorial content – all for the benefit of our customers.

Flip through a full copy of our guide below ↓

Click the left and right arrows to navigate through the brochure. If you need to zoom in, click on the brochure itself and use the + and – slider bar that appears below.

Request your own hard copy or PDF version of 'Making the Change' by emailing us today at marketing@liniar.co.uk.

QNX Passive House Secured By Design Corgi Fenestration PAS24 PAS12608 BBA BPF NBS bhhpa Bali NCC Queens Awards Sustainable Midlands Supporter ISO 9001 ISO 14001

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