What sort of person makes a career in the sign industry?
Sign making – sounds simple and arty – nothing could be further from the truth.
- A project will start when a client contacts your office either by email, telephone or even walks in.
- When that contact comes you could be looking at simple no parking sign or in one case I remember a total sign package in an Eastern European airport.
- The Office Based Sales Person will handle the initial contact and when required will arrange a meeting and the Sign Sales Surveyor will visit the client.
- When he as full detail of the signs required, the Sign Sales Surveyor will liaise with the Designer and Estimator to work out a quotation.
- If the quotation is accepted, it will allocated to a Designer or a Project Manager to finalise the designs and oversee the project.
- When everything is approved by the client the project is presented to the Production Manager who will plan the manufacture. He will allocate the different stages of the project to Metal Workers, Perspex Fabricators, Graphic Designers, Digital Print Operators, Router & Laser Operators, Sign Makers and Buyers for specialist components.
- As the signs are getting near completion the Production Manager or Installation Manager would contact the client and arrange the installation.
- A Senior Sign Fitter and a team of Sign Fitters attend the site and Install the signs.
This is a very rough sketch of the various roles in a sign making business, there are many more specialisations from the traditional Sign Writer with his paint brushes and pallet, to the Vehicle Wrapper, dynamic cowboy of the industry with holstered hot air gun, magnets and felt squeegee.
The roles mentioned above will apply to larger companies, with the smaller companies you will have to be able to adapt to multiple roles.
The successful sign maker has to be Part Salesman, Part Designer, Part Engineer, Part Artist, Part Computer/Machine Operator , Part Fitter and able to visualise all the roles. He must be able to operate under pressure and able to adapt as clients change their minds at the last minute, or order goods with impossible delivery dates.