Supporting UK specifiers

By Kevin Mellor, product development manager, Aluprof UK.

How do specifiers make their choice of systems to use within their designs? Gone are the traditional sales teams promoting their systems, as specifiers have more specific needs in order to get the right product, fitted correctly in the right location.

Libraries within specifiers’ practices have all but disappeared, as the supply of virtually instantaneous technical information, including BIM data, is available on demand via the internet. Despite all technical information being downloadable via a key press, the question of how to use the data correctly is crucial and this can only come from experience.

As the demand for high end technical advice increases, Aluprof’s team of ‘trusted advisors’ are knowledgeable in systems specification, the options available, correct application, fixing and use. This experience is something the specifier can call upon at various stages in the building design to ensure the final building operates in exactly the way the specifier envisages and the client expects.

All our team members are trained at our extensive European headquarters in Poland, and they are able to follow an initial specification on a construction project through to installation, ensuring that all members of the product supply chain has the right information at the right time. This approach is working exceptionally well for us and has allowed us to grow over the last 10 years of operating in the UK and Ireland to become one of the biggest systems companies in architectural fenestration.

Aluprof embraces ‘value management’ and applies these principles to all project management, which is as important as the initial product specification. To ensure supply is offered at the right time and by the most competitive route – looking at where the products are manufactured and how they are delivered to site – can make a big difference on programme. Often a ‘just in time’ supply schedule can be adopted that ensures product can be installed very quickly after delivery, which reduces the possibility of damage occurring on site.

The principles of value management goes beyond ‘value engineering’, and should be adopted by all companies who seek to provide professional services in today’s construction market.

Value engineering seeks to reduce cost often by removing unnecessary physical material in a project to reduce material costs and therefore reduce the cost of the project. Value engineering is commonly seen as a secondary operation undertaken when costs need to be reduced on a quoted project for various reasons.

Of late, the term seems to have taken on a negative connotation suggesting just a reduction in material content, not always for the good of the project as a whole. Value management, on the other hand, has a wider reaching remit and, while it encompasses value engineering at the outset, it is the complete value chain that is explored in adopting value management principles.

We are also keenly aware that products need to meet standards compliance and legislative requirements. Aluprof ensures that all of its products are tested and are fully compliant with all UK standards to ensure the most up to date compliance certificates can be offered to the specifier for peace of mind.

For example, all our fire rated systems carry Certifire compliance. Aluprof also has an ongoing programme of various compliance testing across its whole range of systems to ensure that the boundaries of performance can be explored and expanded upon.

One example of this is our capless fire rated ‘MB-SR50N EI EFEKT’ curtain wall system capable of EI60 fire protection. To date, we believe we are the only systems company in Europe to offer such a system.