Site selection is a multi-faceted process that is essential to business growth. It identifies risks and rewards in a prospective location while understanding incentives to promote success. Such a process entails knowledge from an expert that can guide you through measures to ensure you acquire the correct location.
While some companies may have internal tools and resources to help handle facility management, enlisting the assistance of a site selecting advisor is a smart strategy with many benefits. But how do you find the ideal expert to support your project’s success?
Read on to learn how to hire the right site selection consultants.
Responsibilities of Site Selection Consultant
Site selection consultants are strategy experts that partner with businesses to assess company objectives and needs so that they can determine which new locations would enable growth.
Site selection professionals possess specific knowledge in their industry, including supply-chain management, construction, logistics, incentives, and engineering. Experts can help you understand a location’s tradeoff potential and include multiple factors in their site analysis.
Identify Location-Dependent Costs
Location selection professionals will analyze your investment costs, compare them to future building acquisition expenses, and consider cost differentials in site preparation and infrastructure extensions.
Consultants will also weigh operational costs, including labor, logistics, utilities, and taxes, against incentives that could offset these additional expenses.
Identify Non-Financial Qualities
Site selection consultants may also consider attributes like building characteristics, utility quality, overall business climate, and access to suppliers when determining the right location for you.
Helps You Understand Risks
An ideal strategist will also help you understand potential risks in location acquisition by predicting cost overruns that may impact your budget.
After the analysis, the consultant can further determine the most suitable location that combines all determinants and allows you to move forward with your company upscale.
Reasons To Hire an Expert
There are reasons why site selection experts are the best for the process.
Does Not Disrupt Daily Operations
Due to their knowledge, problem-solving skills, and attention to detail, experts can take on the responsibility of the time-consuming process. You don’t have to place that weight on your staff.
By hiring an internal employee to spearhead the process, employees may neglect their primary duties, possibly affecting standard business operations. However, it would be best to capitalize on site selection firms to ensure a successful outcome.
Provides Access to Specialty Technology
Site selection advisors can leverage technology to provide company owners with accurate data reports breaking down logistics, demographics, and resources. Their sophisticated network of services can determine factors relevant to your site selection decision.
Maintains Confidentiality Between Advisor and Business
Maintaining confidentiality for all internal projects is crucial to a company’s upscale. Fortunately, location advisors prioritize these needs by upholding confidentiality agreements.
This ensures that public relations issues and other sensitive information remains under wraps to control the business’s messaging.
Hiring Factors To Consider
To ensure a professional can efficiently assist businesses in their site selection endeavors, there are a few qualities company owners should consider.
Experience in Their Field
There is nothing more valuable to an individual than their expertise. The ideal professional will demonstrate adequate knowledge from working on complex selection projects.
Advisors will also gain expertise through first-hand interviews with business owners, economic developers, and employees to provide anecdotal intelligence and insight into a company’s future site.
Conflicts of Interest
Site consultants should avoid conflicts of interest that may interfere with a location project. You should hire an advisor that you know will solely assist your company and not serve the interests of other entities.
For instance, some real estate firms can disguise themselves as site selection companies while representing property owners. You’ll want to carefully evaluate concerning conflicts to avoid potentially detrimental consequences down the road.
Specialization in the Industry
Over time, site selecting advisors may become specialists as they establish professional connections with business owners in niche industries requiring unique labor, real estate, and infrastructure.
Established advisors may also gain experience in cross-industry projects like distribution centers, call centers, manufacturing operations, and headquarter locations.
Hiring an expert with experience in your industry may save you time and effort in educating them on essential drivers that fit your company’s growth.
Ability To Compensate
While fee models can vary between consultants, it would help to assess your budget first to ensure that funding can accommodate project expenses. There are different ways to compensate advisors based on their time and performance.
Lump Sum Contract
Under a lump sum consulting contract, company owners will provide consultants with plans, designs, and specifications for a site search. Afterward, advisors estimate costs and provide quotes for the project.
With this contract, compensation is a singular payment made upon a project’s completion.
Performance-based fees aim to compensate consultants for their relative performance. If they successfully locate a future site, this could result in a larger payout.
A flat fee refers to when consultants charge fixed rates for their assistance and services, allowing them to receive more immediate compensation.
Site Selection Mistakes To Avoid
On the other scope of the matter, there are critical mistakes you can make during the site selection process that can hinder a successful outcome. These significant errors can lead to risk and higher expenses.
Unprepared Location Selecting Team
An ineffective site selecting team that neglects core competencies in accounting, logistics, and human resources may struggle to find a proper location for a business to expand without causing project delays and increasing the risk.
Incorrect Search Area
The site selection process begins with determining a business owner’s region of interest due to market dynamics like transportation and human capital needs. A project can fail if advisors are not taking geography into account.
Poor Implementation of Incentives
The implementation and transition team assigned to the project should never forget agreements made during negotiations.
Site selection consultants can naturally weave negotiations into the process to enhance a location’s benefits and mitigate its flaws, resulting in an improved investment return.
Seeking help when trying to upscale a business is a decision that, when done right, creates a positive impact on a company and the chosen area. Hiring the right site selection consultant with adequate technology and experience can help you make important decisions. For more information on site selecting projects, please visit our webpage at WDG Consulting.