I've been thinking about my first blog post for quite some time now, and It finally dawned on me. I need to begin with a brief explanation of the design process!
There are many different ways to explain what a designer does and how everything works and etc. There are so many small details that we can write books about it, but I wanted to break it down to simple general steps.
Below are a few pointers that explains how a project starts and what goes on and how to execute it successfully.
Here are general few steps for the "design process"
1. After a client reaches out, you need to start getting as much information as possible. Such as likes and dislikes, budget, what is it that they exactly want. Getting to know your client and who they are is a critical key to your project's success rate.
2. This is the most important step in my opinion. You need to have an agreement/signed contract with the respected client to avoid any conflicts in the future. Disclose every detail and what you will be covering in the contract.
3. Measure! Measure! Never forget to measure or check the job site before doing anything even when a client presents a floor plan. Even a few inches off can result in a disaster.
4. Show the client inspiration images and create a strong schematic design content to understand what the client likes and doesn't like. Pay attention to their comments and certain phrases that they use. Sometimes a shared Pinterest board can also be very helpful!
5. Present a developed design to them with at least 2-3 options. Keep the options different but not too different. Make sure to include how many revisions will you be offering(disclose in contract), sometimes we can get carried away and offer numerous amount of design changes and not pay attention to the time and creativity invested in it. Knowing the limit to the changes will help you and the client make faster and smarter decisions and this will result in an on time execution of the design.
6. Keep a record of all conversations and approvals between you and the client.
7. If you disclose in the contract that you will be overseeing the construction administration process, and will be corresponding with the respected general contractor, make sure you review everything. Include client and contractor in all conversations. Visit the site and do a walk through. After the construction is over do another back punch with a checklist.
8. This is a very critical note, and many know this already, but make sure to always take pictures, before, during and after. Pictures are very important!