7 Features of a Quality Prefabrication Shop

JF Ahern Employee

Contractors agree that prefabrication of pipe and sheet metal assemblies in a shop environment ultimately benefits a construction project. But how can you ensure that you’re utilizing the best prefabrication shop available? For best results, be sure your chosen facility offers these features.

1. A controlled, professional environment.

A quality shop offers repeatability of production from a workforce of highly skilled and trained tradespeople. A climate-controlled environment and the benefit of specialized fabrication equipment (including fixturing and jig assemblies) will greatly improve quality, timing, and precision over field fabrication. Choose a shop with on-site quality inspectors who adhere to standard operating procedures.

2. Direct contact with on-campus design, quality, and project management.

A prefabrication shop that communicates with other project members allows for proper preplanning; speed of design to build; more accurate design; and a high percentage of order accuracy.

3. Production measures and cost control that drive quality and ensure on-time delivery.

Look for shops with strong delivery rates, turnaround times at or near 100%, and efficiency rates above the OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness) standard measure goal of 85%.

4. Controlled inventory and material buy management.

Stock inventory allows for quick turnaround for small to mid-size jobs. A quality prefabrication shop will obtain better pricing through volume buying and practices vendor management of cost, quality and delivery.

5. Flexible manufacturing capacity and shift availability.

Prefabrication shops need the resources to adapt to the ever-changing needs of a construction project.

6. A professional fleet of delivery vehicles and drivers.

The fleet needs to be flexible and fast to reduce transport time, and ideally would be managed by the production facility to ensure quality material handling. Another benefit would be just-in-time delivery for sites with limited space.

7. Tools & Equipment shop on site.

A shop with a well-equipped T&E department allows the supplies to ship with your manufactured product, reducing shipping costs. This feature also allows for on-site repair and maintenance, and quick turnaround on in-stock tools and equipment.

A quality prefabrication shop offers high quality, efficient production solutions that deliver on time, decrease overall schedule, and reduce safety risk on any project. How does Ahern's new pipe fabrication shop compare? See for yourself.

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