H & E Smith offer a bespoke manufacturing service for their clients.
The nature of the bespoke manufacturing process means that it is difficult to predict exactly what date tiles will be ready for despatch from our factory. However we always try to give our clients a first class service which leads to a happy purchasing experience and positive feedback.
To help you understand how long it will take before we can despatch tiles we summarise the steps in the process that we go through below:
We receive an enquiry from a client asking whether we can manufacture/supply a tile
The process does not start until we confirm with the client that we can get a close match to the tile that they require. To be able to confirm that we can make a tile we either need to have received a physical sample to match to or been given a specification. At this stage we try to give our clients some idea of price and estimate about how long it will take to develop the tile that they require.
Generally we don’t charge for looking at a project but where there may be significant development work involved, we inform our clients about what we have to charge. Development work is always payable in advance and is non-refundable whether the project goes ahead or not.
It is difficult to say how long the development stage will take because some projects are far more complex than others. We pride ourselves on getting a close match but an exact match is normally very difficult to achieve. We do not submit samples until we believe we have achieved a match that the client will accept, but if a client does not accept the initial match we have to carry out further trials that may delay this stage of the project.
In the case of relatively simple matching work we normally get client approval within 3 weeks of receiving the sample to match to.
Once we have client approval of the sample we issue a pro-forma requesting a 50% non-refundable deposit for the order. On receipt of the deposit, we begin manufacturing the tiles. Before we
can start the manufacturing process we need to produce a batch of tiles and a batch of glaze sufficient to supply the quantity of tiles required by the client after allowing for inevitable manufacturing losses.
Each batch of glaze that we produce can vary slightly so before we start manufacturing the order we despatch two sample tiles to the client where we have used the specially prepared tiles and specially prepared batch of glaze. Once we have final approval from the client of these final samples, we process the order as swiftly as possible.
The unglazed tiles can normally be manufactured in approximately 4 weeks and during this period we prepared and submit for approval the special batch of glaze that is needed. Therefore is all goes to plan we should be able to start production within 4 weeks from the end of step 2.
Completion of the order depends on the overall size of the order but we put a plan in place.
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