Behind the Scenes at Xtralite

An insight into the internal processes we undertake in order to arrive at the ideal rooflight solution for each client.

Our teams go to great lengths to ensure that customers get the best and most accurate quote for their particular project.

In refurbishment cases, within a couple of days of Xtralite being contacted by the customer, one of our experienced area managers will generally visit the site and carry out an initial site survey. The purpose of this visit is to look in detail at the products already in situ on the roof, and any obvious external obstacles that could cause difficulties in the future.

Important considerations at this initial site survey are the roof build up, the proposed works to renovate the roof and also the internal environments, ie; the room beneath the proposed rooflight.

Through assessing factors such as whether the rooflight is overlooked and requires additional privacy, or whether it is heated or non-heated, or if the internal environment is moisture generating, eg a kitchen or bathroom, our team of experts can correctly identify which products and materials are suitable for the individual project.

Xtralite also receives enquiries relating to projects where larger glazed structures are to be replaced. In these instances, it may be in order for a member of our Technical Department to attend site to ensure any possible on-site difficulties can be designed and engineered out, effectively creating the most cost effective solution for the customer.

Where rooflights are being installed into new structures we would usually receive drawings and specifications sent direct to our offices. After logging these onto our specialist system the enquiry is checked by our technical team for feasibility of design, and again to determine the most cost effective solution, whilst maintaining the design criteria set out by the Architect. Occasionally for the more complex rooflight solutions, in order to develop an estimate, and therefore quotation, we may need to part design the installation.

Increasingly we find that the building designer makes use of our specialist skill by involving a member of our experienced team at early design stage. By working together at this stage, we can overcome some of the difficulties that may arise, and ensure that the building goes ahead as seen in the mind’s eye of the designer, in the most cost effective way.

Following the design stage, our sales team put together a brief, which is passed to our engineering team to be assessed; ultimately determining which of the suite of glazing bars ought to be used to meet design requirements. After this engineering process, projects are passed to our estimators for the production of a final quotation. These quotations, where appropriate, may contain 3D sketch drawings which help to ensure that our perception of the rooflight design matches that of the customer.

For the larger structural enquiries a quotation is produced, on average, within a week of receiving the enquiry, but this can be sooner if the client is working to a tight deadline.

The sending of the quotation however, is not the end of our process. Depending on the size of the project and its complexity, we may become involved with the client’s design team to further develop the specification through ‘pre-contract’ meetings. Once an order is received final dimensions are taken from either the site, or the designer’s detailed drawings. Xtralite’s draughtsmen then produce drawings for final approval and the rooflight structure is manufactured – a process which will be further explained in a later edition of Exposure.

Our structural glazing systems can be wide and varied. We work very closely with the client to ensure everyone is 100% satisfied before the point of manufacture, and can attend both site visits and design meetings if required. To view some of our structural glazing projects, click here.

For clients requiring a standard system, such as Xtralite’s small modular rooflights, the site survey remains the same with our team assessing the roof make-up as well as the internal environment and taking on-site dimensions.

Again, we believe in involving a specialist at an early design stage to help ensure that the project runs smoothly. Our seven regional sales representatives have in excess of 170 years’ combined industry experience and will employ the same level of knowledge whether the project is educational, retail, health or domestic.

Quotations for our standard systems are produced and delivered direct via email from our bespoke, state-of-the-art, software system.

Throughout this process, it is clear that one of our biggest assets is our experienced staff, many of whom have been with us since Xtralite was founded. Their industry and product knowledge ensures they ask all of the right questions to ensure that our customers receive the right specification, the right service and the right price every time.