Most large UK sign businesses work with a blend of in-house and subcontract sign installers, a necessity to keep this potentially large, fixed cost scalable with demand.
For large UK rollout programmes, Merson have frequently operated at levels where they have in excess of 60 crews working in any given week in order to deliver large programmes while continuing to provide the level of service existing customers expect and deserve.
Booking, quality controlling, and managing such a large volume is only possibly thanks to Merson’s bespoke ERP system, Tetris. As well as booking crews weeks or months in advance, Tetris keeps a record and helps monitor performance, as well as proactively managing all the necessary health & safety and security credentials all the crews need to earn and maintain.
This level of structure and planning, supported by Merson’s Installation Management Team and four very experienced Installation Supervisors, is what separates their rollout programme delivery from the rest.
True to Merson’s DNA as a business where things are kept transparent and straightforward, their approach to overseas projects is the same. Unlike others, they don’t claim to have installers across the globe, or an ‘alliance’ giving access to a “global installation network”. Merson assess the installation requirements of every overseas installation project on its merits and devise a methodology that delivers a quality installation at an affordable cost.
Merson presently have two global programmes underway, one with eight or nine overseas sites per annum, one with over 100. These are fulfilled with a combination of shipping product to site, taking product to site, using UK crews, overseas crews with UK supervision all supported by exacting surveys and detailed installation guides, often featuring instructional videos.
Installing overseas can be costly, so definition, scoping, and programme control are essential. If there are other contractors involved, Merson will establish if there is sufficient control over them and that the programme enables them to do what has been agreed and when with the primary objective being to get the job done on time without incurring avoidable additional costs.
Merson have three directly employed full-time surveyors and, similar to their installation resourcing, they can supplement these with tried and trusted external resource. Conventional surveying method can be employed, with 3D scanning and data captured available where the project will benefit from it.
Merson have unique applications that they use for the management and sharing of this data (just ask for a demo) and, like every other service offered at Merson, once you’ve paid for it you own it and we will ensure you have soft copies of everything we capture for you, whether they are scanned site drawings photographs or 3D scans.
Survey work is the foundation for any project and Merson spend a lot of time on the briefing stage and agreeing the scope. Looking for a way to add value to clients is second nature at Merson, and in order to get maximum value from survey visits, Merson can even capture non-signage data
Whether for an external or internal project, 3D scanning adds so much to the comprehension of a space, allowing clients to make better choices for what they do with it. The data can then be manipulated and augmented, further helping with the visualisation and space planning process.
This is not an expensive process and it relatively quick and non-disruptive on site, meaning there are few projects where it is not a worthwhile part of the site survey process.
There is little, if anything, about these specialist installations that varies from everyday sign installation. The difference is the environment and the requirements that go with it, namely health & safety and in some cases security clearance.
Merson have many installers with accreditations for, and experience of, working in these environments. Whether it is working trackside at a rail station or working airside in an airport terminal, Merson understand the requirements after decades of experience and plan accordingly at the project resourcing stage.
Merson ensure signs are always removed with care and consideration to avoid damage to substrates and avoidable mess and disruption for clients and their customers. Ideally it should be left until as close as possible to the new sign installation minimising the time and site is not looking its best, the exception being when sign removal has to be carried out in advance in order to check the sub-structure or to get some hard sizes.
It is rarely possibly to re-use signs, so recycling is the next most attractive option. Merson will establish in advance what the old signs are made of in order to set up the correct recycling protocols. Sometimes signs need to be returned to one of Merson’s factories for separation of components and materials before recycling, often this can be carried out local to each site and local recycling facilities used, avoiding transporting redundant signage further than is needed.
All recycling is at certified centres with every batch recorded, important for peace of mind and part of Merson’s annual recycling records where they target to reduce landfill and increase recycling year-on-year.
Before starting any project, whether it is buried services such as power or water to be aware of, or GBP (Ground Bearing Pressure) to establish for calculating foundation sizes, Merson make sure to do their homework and use all available tools to understand what lies beneath.
Put into perspective, Merson are experienced in completing groundworks for large scale signage structures such as gantries. So in comparison, installation of most of their signs is actually a very simple part of what they do.
The latest news, articles and resources, sent to your inbox monthly.