Home Doors Painting: the in-house vs outsource debate

Painting: the in-house vs outsource debate

Guy Hubble, Joint Managing Director at RegaLead, discusses the advantages of taking full control of your painting requirements.

Vertical integration is a popular phrase in manufacturing – fenestration included. By bringing as many processes as possible in-house, it enables better control over production and helps to control different stages along the supply chain, instead of relying on external suppliers.

Many fabricators strive to achieve this through the production of IGUs as well as their full range of products, avoiding buying anything in, and ensuring consistent quality across the board.

However, when it comes to painting, this passion for maintaining full control seems to fall by the wayside, despite fabricators in foreign markets and joiners in the timber window and door market having done so as par for the course for many years.

The colour of money
Colour is a rapidly growing market and with consumers becoming ever more discerning and demanding, this is only going to increase.

According to Tommy Trinder’s analysis of more than 270,000 PVC-U casements quoted by installers in 2022, only 59% were unfoiled. The data also showed that an incredible 1,841 different colour combinations were quoted during that period.

Homeowners are really switched on when it comes to colour these days. They want something unique, something that gives their property real kerb appeal and sets it apart from the neighbours. They’re tuned in to the latest trends and aspire for Farrow & Ball-esque hues – a limited palette just will not do.

It’s not possible for foiled options to meet this demand. Not only would it be far too cost prohibitive, but it would massively exacerbate the issues fabricators already experience with ever-challenging stock levels of coloured profile. Minimum order quantities of special non-stock from syscos means potential wastage or unnecessary stockholding.

“‘But it’s not that simple’, I hear you cry! ‘We’ll need to hire experienced staff, we haven’t got the room, the equipment is too expensive, we just haven’t got the time to do it’. All fair points, but also not particularly accurate.”

Out of control
So, the simple solution for any jobs that require a non-standard colour is to outsource to a specialist paintshop. What’s the problem with that? Well, where do I start…

Firstly, outsourcing painting will significantly increase lead times on the products in question. Then you’ve got the additional admin headache of booking the jobs in, packaging them up, labelling them correctly, and extra transport costs ferrying them to and from the paintshop, increasing your carbon footprint.

We all know the complications that this can bring and how easily individual items can get mislaid. For instance, a missing cill or threshold would hold the job up even further – booking a replacement to be cut and then sent out to be painted again – all extra aggravation that should be unnecessary.

However, the main disadvantage of outsourcing is that loss of control. Loss of control over the quality of finish, loss of control over the palette of colours you can offer customers, and loss of control over lead times.

Take back control
By setting up your own in-house paintshop, you’ll regain control over all these elements of your production. You’ll be able to achieve perfect matching colours across each job, offer a wider palette, cut unnecessary transportation and admin, and integrate painting into your current processes for maximum efficiency.

‘But it’s not that simple’, I hear you cry! ‘We’ll need to hire experienced staff, we haven’t got the room, the equipment is too expensive, we just haven’t got the time to do it’. All fair points, but also not particularly accurate.

We remove the aggravation from the process of taking painting in-house. We can educate your team and guide you through with minimal disruption. A spray booth can be set up in a relatively small area and for as little as £10k, enabling you to make a ROI in a short period of time.

We’ll give full support to your project manager and help to plan how you can facilitate it in your premises, also providing full ongoing assistance and maintenance.

We will teach your staff all the skills they’ll need to operate the spraying booth at our own training centre, and our online ordering system has been specifically designed to take the hassle out of replenishing stock. We’ve also got two trade counters, located in Manchester and Kent.

If you want more information on how to bring painting in-house and take control of another element of your production, then get in touch (sales@regalead.co.uk) – we’ll be happy to paint you a picture of just how easy it is.


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