Whether your current uniforms are dated, or have received several complaints from its users, or your brand has had a refresh and you want your uniforms to reflect this new image, starting a new uniform project involves rethinking afresh what your objectives are.
Having worked in several uniform management projects over the past 16 year including for companies like Qatar Airways, Virgin Voyages, Air Austria and L’Oréal, SKYPRO knows a thing or two about what makes a project simple and successful.
“The brief is really important when designing uniforms, as it can ensure all aspects that are important to the client are taken into account by the suppliers from day one. Of course the brief can be adjusted and changes can be made throughout the process, but this adds time and complexity and it always helps to approach a new project with all the information to hand” says Nuno Ribeiro from SKYPRO’s product department.
To help you write a strong uniform brief, here are the things that are useful to include:
Who will be wearing the uniforms and what activities do they perform?
Thinking end-user first is key to ensure the uniform will bring high levels of employee satisfaction and be designed for what it is intended to do – which will improve the durability of each garment
What have been past complaints or reasons for return of current uniforms?
Sure we are happy to keep the past where it belongs, but if you are changing uniforms due to past complaints then it is important to ensure the new designs and materials address these issues
Where will employees be working?
Indoors? Outdoors? In what countries? This will have a significant impact in the designs and the materials selected to ensure maximum comfort.
What is your maximum budget?
Several clients prefer to withhold their budget in the beginning, in the hope the supplier can come below what they intend to spend. This is always an option, however a budget will determine how much detail goes into a design and the type of cut and materials selected and budgeted. For example, a custom pattern will bring a higher material cost than a standard solid colour, and the designer will take the budget into account when making these choices.
What will be the expected entitlement per workgroup and how many employees per workgroup?
A very small workgroup may need to share certain uniform pieces with other workgroups so that minimum order quantities can be met during production without leaving surplus stock. The differentiation between workgroups can then be made through lower cost details such as ties, hats, etc.
What are your brand codes, identity and values?
A uniform is often the face of a brand to its customers. Knowing what these values and image are (ideally through a brand book) is paramount to delivering uniforms that live into them.
How often will each piece be worn and renewed?
As a rule of thumb, SKYPRO designs for durability. But the choice of materials may be different if designing trousers that will be worn daily for 5 years or a pair that is worn only in winter and will be renewed once a year.
What do you not want your uniforms to have?
Are there features you know your employees would hate? Do you need to avoid details like buttons for fear of them getting caught in machinery for example? Is your workforce on average slightly above weight and therefore curves should be taken into account for design and sizing? Knowing these details upfront will help the design and product teams to find the best solution from the onset
Is sustainability a priority for your company?
Whilst SKYPRO always aim to create uniforms using sustainable materials and eco-conscious suppliers, knowing that sustainability is a priority may rule out a number of materials that are cost-effective and commonly used in uniforms but are derived from non-sustainable sources.
Who will manage the ordering, storage and delivery of uniforms and how?
SKYPRO offers end-to-end uniform management services including an automated software that simplifies ordering, delivery, reporting and forecasting of uniforms. If you are satisfied with your current uniform management process then your supplier will only look after the production and delivery of uniforms. However a new uniform project presents a strong opportunity to review the current process, identify challenges and costly activities and develop solutions to improve efficiency.
If you would like to learn more about our uniform management services feel free to contact us on: [email protected]