HOW TO CULTIVATE AND MAINTAIN STRONG CLIENT RELATIONSHIPS
Every business requires professional interactions with a range of related parties. In the world of design, whether structural or interior, most transactions occur between people or organizations that are responsible for the final outcome of the designed project, or with the client who has commissioned the project and will own it once it is completed. It is integral for any successful design business venture to have a relationship of strong communication, mutual trust and respect between the client and the consultant.
At GRender Studio, the most important aspect of our business is that we produce work that is not only satisfactory for all involved parties, but exemplary. We strive to encourage professional relationships that have a mutual appreciation for thoughtful collaboration and well-executed work. We understand that when clients can depend on consultants like us to deliver high-quality work promptly and in accordance to all specifications outlined at the time of commission, a relationship with a foundation of trust can be facilitated.
We believe in the following guiding principles that help to cultivate and maintain the strongest client relationships:
Above all else, communication with the client is key. We believe this wholeheartedly at GRender Studio; our team works relentlessly to ensure that not only are the clients’ needs being met when it comes to the production of visualizations for their design projects, but that the clients also feel that they are being heard, and that their ideas and suggestions are being taken into consideration.
The design process is a collaborative effort; the role visualization consultants is to work in harmony with the client to accurately execute their vision. Like all rendering companies should, we strive to represent each project in a manner that is appealing to the targeted audience, but also demonstrates the finesse of expertly crafted images that is recognizable to design professionals.
The goal of every 3D rendering company should be to achieve the correct mood and atmosphere of each image that highlights the project, and incorporate elements that are relevant to the circumstances of the rendered image. With that said, the vision that visualization consultants are helping to materialize is the clients', as only they have the deepest understanding of the narrative that is meant to be communicated with the project. Even with all the visualization expertise of a rendering company, it should always be ensured that clients have the opportunity to communicate with visualization consultants about any details, concerns or recommendations. This allows the rendering team to produce the absolute best result possible, and in accordance with the budget and timeline that was agreed upon when the agreement for the visualization project was made. By encouraging consistent and thorough client communication throughout the design process, rendering companies are able to maintain impenetrable relationships with all of our clients.
While knowledge of the English language is often taken for granted, it is crucial to realize that oftentimes, rendering companies are based out of foreign countries that may not be fluent in English. English proficiency does not reflect on the quality of production in the architectural visualization field, but it does have significant impact on the rendering consultant’s ability to communicate with the client.
It is a great unspoken advantage to the process of producing architectural rendering when all parties involved share the same native language. There are obvious benefits to the communication between the client and visualization team when no language barriers exist between them, but it is also a potential cost saving measure to choose a visualization company whose native language is English. When the requirements and desires for a project are unimpeded by verbal and written miscommunications, errors in the design and resultant rendered imagery can be avoided. Of course, when revisions do not have to be constantly made to the rendering project at hand, substantial time and finances can be saved.
LOCATION OF RENDERING COMPANY
For the sake of ensuring the best possible client-consultant relationships, it is also important to consider the geographical location of the architectural visualization company in relation to where the project is based out of. Similarly to the potential errors in communication that can occur as a result of language barriers between clients and consultants, it can be extremely detrimental to the communication between client and consultant when their respective locations are so far removed from each other that time differences come into play. It can be incredibly frustrating for both the client and visualization consultant to work around differences in time zones, as communications can be extremely delayed, resulting in the loss of time to work on a project. To avoid such hindrances for what are sometimes minor adjustments to a project, it is often best for clients to select an architectural visualization company whose location is not so distant, so that the relationship with the consultant does not have to be unnecessarily strained by frustrations like these time differences.
Another benefit of choosing a rendering company within a client’s own geographical region is the standardization of conventions when the visualizations are being
executed. Using rendering companies in foreign parts of the world runs the risk of a client’s project visualization being produced with unfamiliar conventions in different aspects of the project, including the human entourages that are depicted in the rendered images. Foreign rendering companies may choose figures that are representative of their local population and customs, but not necessarily representative of the project’s location. When clients select rendering companies that are relatively close in geographical proximity, they can rest assured that their projects will be executed in a manner that accurately portrays the demographic that will be impacted by the project. This relieves clients of the possible stress that can be put on their relationships with the consultant due to misinformation.
CONSIDERATION OF COMMENTS
When comments of any nature are provided for an architectural visualization project, they must be considered and implemented in their entirety. A typical source of frustration between clients and visualization consultants is that in many cases, when a series of comments, critiques, or suggestions are made by the client, not all of them are taken into account by the digital artist. So, when a new draft of the project is presented, it will likely have only addressed some of the comments that were initially made, and a further round of revisions will be expected in order to achieve the version of the project that the client was looking for.
All comments that are made for a project should be considered and implemented at once to avoid such unnecessary time being spent on revisions that had been previously requested. When a rendering company addresses every comment for a project in one pass at the draft, they are showing that they are attentive to the needs of the client, have a productive and thoughtful workflow, and ultimately capable of fostering a steadfast relationship with their clients.
When a visualization company offers clients a file sharing platform with their clients, they are revealing their confidence in their work to the degree that they believe in full transparency.
The use of a file sharing platform allows for productivity with great ease for all parties involved in a project. Clients are given the opportunities to pinpoint files which they would like revisions to be made to, the consultant can provide regular updates in the form of updated project files, and tedious and redundant email communication can be almost entirely avoided. Additionally, every modification made to each file can be tracked by those involved in the project, so any discrepancies or miscommunications that do occur can be traced back by use of timestamps in the shared drive.
A client’s architectural rendering project should be available for them to access and review at all times throughout the visualization process. When this level of transparency can be achieved through a file sharing platform, it ensures that the consulting rending company is able to facilitate the strongest working relationships with their clients, because they are able to work collaboratively.
RESPECT FOR DEADLINES
Every business understands the necessity for adhering to the timelines that are set out for a project. However, it is particularly integral for the business of architectural rendering and visualization, as the rendering of a project is just one of many steps that contributes to the project’s final product. Architectural projects are passed between so many consultants, from the time of their inception to completion, that is paramount to the project’s success that all participating parties are able to respect deadlines and deliver work in a timely manner.
With architectural visualization as the vehicle for presenting the project’s scheme to potential investors and occupants, it is imperative for the rendering work to be completed on time so that the companies who take on the work of the project after it’s presentation can do so in accordance with their own schedules and deadlines. It is undeniably difficult for visualization teams to essentially serve as some of the “middle-men” in a project, as significant responsibility for the outcome and reception of the architectural project rests on their shoulders. However, as long as deadlines can be met, clients can be confident in the smooth transition of their projects from the visualization company to the next consultant.
PROVIDING COMPLETE PROJECT INFORMATION
It is often the case with architectural rendering projects that an incomplete set of project information is initially provided to the visualization consultants. In many cases, clients will offer a preliminary set of information for the rendering company to begin working off of, only to come back later with more updated versions of the project that differ greatly from what the visualization team was first provided with. When this happens, a great amount of the work that the rendering company had already completed is deemed unusable, and ultimately, precious time has been lost.
In order for clients and visualization consultants to maintain the best possible working relationships, an understanding that work can only be pursued with a complete set of project information is recommended. This means that the project’s design must be firm and approved, with all revisions to the models in question already having been made before it reaches the hands of the visualization team. This way, productivity can be optimized, and a more successful rendering output can be produced without any time being lost on working with incomplete drafts of project information.
EVERYTHING IN WRITING
In any business, there is no better assurance of a request being made than having a record of it. It is especially important to have a paper trail of requests being made to architectural projects, simply because of how many different companies they are passed through to execute the final project. Having requests for changes in writing, whether they are revisions to the materials, model, environment, or anything else, provides irrefutable proof of the desire for a revision to be made, and can save all parties the hassle of trying to determine when something has been or needs to be done.
Requests for project amendments in writing also help to keep track of processes that may have been forgotten by one or more parties. Sometimes, when an architectural project has to undergo a significant number of changes, it can be difficult to monitor what revisions need the attention of the visualization team. Clients that can provide all requests in writing help to strengthen the relationships with rendering company consultants, as they contribute to the foundation of communication that is so important to maintaining the professional bond.
REPUTATION OF QUALITY
The nature of a strong business relationship is built upon many things, but at the core is the history of the consultant’s consistently high-caliber work that the client can depend upon. Without a compelling body of work to refer to for a visualization company’s standards, it is nearly impossible for any client to have faith in hiring that company for their project’s architectural visualization needs.
Clients should expect the best quality of work from their selected visualization consultants. Some rendering companies spend more time on the final iterations of a project, and some put more work into the earliest drafts. Although the first draft will never be the best phase for the overall quality to be evaluated, clients should be able to determine the caliber of work that will ultimately be produced by the visualization team after the second draft. If the quality is not apparent by this stage of the rendering process, the client will have to confer with the consultant to establish whether the company will truly be able to meet the expectations of the project. When clients can rely on design consultants to produce exceptional work, the working relationship - whether new or existing - is bolstered.
THE GRENDER STUDIO PROMISE
The relationships that GRender Studio has with its clients mean everything to the team. Our clients are often the driving forces behind the challenges we take on, and preserving their trust is of the utmost importance to our team. We know that cultivating and maintaining strong client relationships is the foundation upon which we build our business, and to do so, we stand by these principles and hold ourselves accountable for the work we produce and the way we go about producing it. We are a proud North American rendering company that with clients across the USA and Canada, and we work with Google Suite as a file sharing platform for the ease of client collaboration. We are always open to feedback, requests and critiques - anything it takes to produce the perfect resultant rendering project for our clients. Whatever the task at hand, we welcome the opportunity to test and prove our expertise in the field of architectural visualization, and we look forward to every chance to establish a new client relationship.
To get in touch with a team member about your next project, please visit our website’s CREATE page so we can discuss the details of how we can make your vision a reality!