6 Questions to Ask when Choosing a Fabricator

Ben O'DellHelpful Tips, Steel Industry

Steel Welding
Choosing the best steel fabricator is vital to the success of your overall project. It is important to select a company that is trustworthy and responsive to all the questions you may have regarding you project. Here are a few critical and practical questions you will want to ask when considering a steel fabrication company.

What is your Level of Experience?

The experience of a fabricator is key for two reasons. First, you want to know how long the company has been in business. If your steel fabricator is relatively new, it is more likely that they will be less efficient and your overall quality might be less because of the lack of experience. Your steel fabricator should have many years of experience under its belt. Second, you will also want to ask about past projects which will also help you to understand the practical capability of the fabricator and whether or not projects like yours have been completed in the past.

What are Your Company’s Capabilities?

Your steel fabricator does not need to be the largest company, but it does need to be able to do exactly what you need for your specific project. A fabrication company should be proficient in these areas:
    • Initial Design
    • Material Variety
    • Production
      • Delivery
      • Installation

      Are You a “Turnkey” Company?

      A turnkey company is one that can handle a project from start to finish. Your steel fabricator should be able to handle your project from estimation all the way through detailing, project management, fabrication and final installation. It is important to choose a turnkey company so that the entire project is completed under one contract.
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      Your turnkey steel fabricator will know all stages of a job, so any problems can be foreseen and solved; and the hassle of coordination between multiple contractors is eliminated.

      Is Your Company Certified?

      Certification is a vital part of a successful steel fabrication company. The most common certification among reputable fabrication companies is The American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC). The AISC yearly audits its members to ensure a high standard of quality and safety with the products its members are fabricating.

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      How is Your Customer Service?

      The quality and timeliness of a project not only depend on pure fabrication, but also rely on the commitment of a company to its customer. A steel fabricator should be committed to having your project done on time, responding to your questions and concerns, and fixing your problems from the beginning to the end of your project.

      Do you have any References?

      It is also important to ask your steel fabricator for references. If provided, you will be able to contact past consumers who have worked with your steel fabricator and have first-hand experience with the quality, efficiency, capability and customer service of your fabricator.