Pyramid will utilize its existing contacts with architects, governmental agencies, commercial developers and local school districts to increase word-of-mouth about our business. We have a standard brochure on our expertise and specialties which will be sent to architectural firms recommended to us by our current contacts.
Our marketing to architects and developers focuses on our thorough engineering expertise across the full range of skills necessary for any project. Examples of previous work and recommendations from former employers are available for the asking. Our individual reputations as reliable, skilled, knowledgeable resources, combined with our range of expertise as a team, will appeal strongly to those looking for subcontractors.
Pyramid has focused on the western and central Pennsylvania area initially. We are licensed to practice in most states in the eastern United States, and will continue to expand into these areas.
Pyramid Engineering, P.C. has the following competitive edges:
For established engineering and architectural firms who require mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection engineering and consulting services, Pyramid offers a competitive and economical option. Projects may be delegated to Pyramid directly or arrangements can be made to supplement and assist their own in-house staff.
Most engineering work is billed on an hourly basis to predetermined levels dictated by project schedule milestones. We have assigned a rate of $75/hour for basic engineering/consulting services and $40/hour for drafting services. These are conservative values for the engineering market. We have used conservative unit rates to remain more competitive.
We will focus our limited advertising budgets to promote community sponsored events. We will also offer technical services at discount rates to non-profit organizations.
Sales in our business is client service. It is repeat business. One doesn't sell an engineering project, one develops a proposal that works for the client.
We must always be aware of the big-company consulting phenomenon of the split between selling the job and fulfilling the job, which leads to client dissatisfaction. The job should be developed, scoped, sold, and fulfilled by the same people. Our clients should never buy a job from one partner and have it delivered by anybody other than that same partner.
We need to avoid the temptation to drop fees to gain jobs. When a potential client questions the cost of a project, we explain the benefits. If the budget is for less money, then we must offer less service. Billing rates are not negotiated.
The following table and chart give a run-down on forecasted sales. In the last four months we have achieved sales of roughly $29,000 per month. We expect sales to remain at a relatively constant level for the next year.
Direct unit costs for the year consist solely of labor; these can be found in the Personnel Plan. Labor rates have been set at 70% of unit revenues, which yields a 30% gross margin. In the next year, we plan to increase gross margin to 35% as a result of providing a more efficient service to our clients.
Our unit rate for basic engineering/consulting service has been set at $75/hour. This is a conservative assumption based on published salary guideline levels for engineering professionals. Our unit rate for CAD services is $40/hour
The accompanying table lists important milestones, with dates and managers in charge, and budgets for each. The milestone schedule indicates our emphasis on planning for implementation. Early milestones concern planning for the next three years, followed by further development of marketing and sales literature. We have also included ongoing meetings and reviews to confirm that our planned sales and expenses are matching our actual results.