- By Samantha Langridge
- 17th Feb 2022
Tips for choosing the right educational interior designers
Whether you are looking to fit out a single classroom with new furniture and fittings, or you intend to refurbish your entire school, choosing the right educational interior designers is of paramount importance. Get it right and you have a new and exciting school space to enhance your students’ learning experience. Get it wrong and you’ve wasted valuable resources for very little return on your investment.
Here at Westcountry Group, we have decades of experience designing and refurbishing educational establishments across the South of England. We’re well aware of the potential pitfalls you can face when it comes to picking the right design team for you and your needs. In this article, we have put together some questions you can ask to help you decide.
Experience and Reputation
Designing school spaces is not an easy job and requires both skill and experience to do it properly. You should ask your interior designers to provide references from other schools or colleges where they have performed similar work. Any designer worth their reputation will not only have client testimonials, but also case studies demonstrating they have worked on other projects of a similar size and scope. If possible, ask if they can arrange a site visit to a completed project. Most schools will be happy to oblige, particularly if they have confidence in the designer.
Stability and Risk
Any design or refurbishment project carries some element of risk. When choosing a designer to complete your project, your job is to minimise that risk by asking the right questions. The first thing you should discover is how long the company has been in business. From there, ask if they can afford to purchase the materials for you upfront and whether they have the workforce and infrastructure in place to operate in your region.
Other key questions include whether they can guarantee to complete the project on time and within budget and whether they will conduct a full Health and Safety risk assessment prior to starting. For your own peace of mind you should ensure that they have a comprehensive public liability insurance policy in place, for the safety of your school, staff, and students.
It’s important to be clear what services your design company is providing. If you wait until it’s time to sign the contract, it might be too late to change to another designer. While different companies offer different services that you may or may not need, there are some that should be standard across the industry. Ask your designer if they provide the following:
• a full assessment of your current school space
• a consultation process where you can define your vision for the school
• space planning and technical design
• a dedicated project manager for the job
• a detailed timetable for the project
• regular client updates provided to a set schedule
Westcountry Group is an experienced and fully-accredited firm of educational interior designers working across the South West and South East of England. If your educational establishment – be it a school college, university, or other place of learning – is in need of refurbishment or redesign, contact the team today. Call us on 0330 030 0330 to discuss your requirements and to receive a free, no obligation quote.