Buying equipment can be a major investment for most businesses, but it can open up new product lines, increase efficiency or even reduce the environmental footprint of your entire operation. If you need to decide whether it is time to purchase new industrial tools, machinery or equipment, we’ve prepared a list of 5 questions you should ask yourself first.
1. How good is the business case for making the purchase?
Of course, a dozen smaller questions lurk just behind that one. Will this purchase improve your bottom line by cutting costs or improving performance? Is it a major purchase representing significant financial risk? Is buying more efficient or less expensive than modifying or upgrading your current equipment? Can you trust the supplier to deliver what they promise? Writing up a business case for the decision can help you make the right one.
2. How will you finance the equipment purchase?
Do you have the finds to purchase it outright? If so, that comes wit the least financial hassle. Will you be going through an asset finance company? Will you be getting a business loan or a commercial loan? Regardless of the financing choice you make, ensure that it doesn’t add unnecessary risk, leave you short of liquid assets or lock you into a payment structure you might not be able to sustain.
3. How well is the equipment supported?
Is there a manufacturer’s warranty? Does your supplier offer an extended support package? The bottom line here is that sooner or later, something will go wrong with your equipment. Make sure you have a plan to deal with that.
4. Have you accounted for the costs of installation and set-up?
This can be a tricky question to answer, as installation and set-up might be covered by the manufacturer’s or supplier’s service contract. If installation isn’t included, make sure you get a solid estimate for what this part of the process will cost, and make sure the extra expense doesn’t change the business case you constructed in step one.
5. Will you or your people need any special training to operate the new equipment, or to integrate it into your current processes?
If not, then you’re clear. If there is a need for operational or safety training, you have to account for its cost as well. While the manufacturer or supplier might offer training either as part of the agreed purchase or support price, you’ll still have to give up the time your employees spend in training, and you may be responsible for training any new hires on the new equipment yourself. Again, make sure the business case for purchase is still solid after taking any training costs or expenses into account.
Once you know that you’re in the right place to make an equipment purchase, you have to decide which supplier to use Choosing a reliable, well-known organization like__ can be a huge weight off your shoulders, as using a supplier you can trust removes many of the uncertainties in the decision-making process. If you have any questions about our equipment, tools and supplies or how they can be put to use for you, please do not hesitate to ask.