Cost and capabilities are typical considerations when buying a new CNC plasma system – but what else might you be overlooking?
Operational expenses and productivity gains are obvious concerns when evaluating a new CNC plasma system. Faster cut speeds, fewer secondary operations, and improved material usage will all drive purchasing decisions. Likewise, the benefits of new technology will tend to offer your business improved energy efficiency, better cut quality, and longer consumable life. These considerations are important, however, here are some less obvious details that should factor into your decision.
Three more questions to ask yourself when buying a CNC plasma
1. Will improving or expanding my services encourage repeat business?
Establishing a shop is already hard enough, but owners and managers depend on loyal customers and repeat business. When clients can rely on you and trust is established, loyal customers will spend more money with your shop. Moreover, they are typically easier to conduct business with, based on proven relationships.
Take the time to find out what your clients really need. Maybe it’s faster delivery times, lower costs, higher quality products, and/or customization. These are just a few ideas, but your customer will give you specific information on the ways you can improve, expand, and distinguish your shop.
2. Will better equipment help me keep good employees?
Loyal employees are just as important as loyal customers. Hiring and keeping good employees is one of the biggest challenges for most businesses. That said, satisfied employees are less likely to leave your company. One way to increase job satisfaction is to give employees the best tools. Tools that are easy to learn, make the job easier to do, and are capable of consistent outcomes.
Talk to your operators to find out what they want and need. Most employees care about their work and have great ideas based on their experience. By considering worker input, you will foster stronger ties and strengthen your allegiance. Even if you don't end up going with the feedback, your employees are more likely to be invested in the company's success.
3. Will this machine allow me to take on new business and grow my company?
Consider the jobs offered to you in the last year. Have you turned down work or referred a customer to another shop? Have you outsourced a job, or part of a job, because you didn’t have the right tools? Were you dependent on a supplier that missed some deadlines? Are there jobs you could take-on if you could cut thicker metal, cut parts with smoother edges, or bevel cut? How much are these missed opportunities costing you?
Operational expenses and productivity gains are important when selecting a CNC plasma plate cutting machine but you must look beyond the cutting table. Think about the people that produce and buy your products. Ask yourself, how can I better serve their needs so I can grow my business?