Plan B; How to define quality?

Singapore 30th September 2011

Last day of September already, time for the typical end of the month administration, salaries, bills, invoicing…as long as the positives (invoices to clients) are superior to the negatives (overheads) we are in good shape. A wise friend of mine once said: “Your overheads are guaranteed, but your income is not….”, hence we have to be always vigilant about our cash flow. Easier said then done!

My introspection for today is quality. I come to this subject through some catalogues handed to us from local suppliers full of “unknown” brands, some manufactured in China, Asia but quite some also in Europe, like Italy and Spain. The thing they have in common is that they are cheap. But interestingly some seem to be of fairly acceptable quality! I generally call them my “plan B” fittings, alternative lighting systems that are not as fancy as the high end stuff we tend to specify but good enough in quality and resulting lighting effects to be specified when budgets do not allow the A-grade type of fittings.

My biggest challenge is where to draw the line between what is still acceptable in quality and what not. Quality in the widest sense of the word, including performance, maintenance and other operational quality criteria. Many of these “unknown” brands are actually OEM companies for the big boys, so chances are that you get a similar quality fitting for half the price. Unfortunately we do not always know and there are also a lot of dodgy manufacturers in the market that are riding the fast train of LED. I generally pay not too much attention to these “unknowns” like they are wannabees that also want to profit from the LED craze, but lately with budgets really under fire in many projects, it is worth examining some of these companies more closely. It however requires from us good knowledge of the quality criteria that can make a break the performance and durability of the light fitting in question…

IIn Light Watch today a look at how LED is finding its way in floor coverings and carpets! One of the latest products amongst others applied in Boeing’s new Dreamliner jet has the LEDs
integrated in the carpet! What light fitting specification?…its just a carpet!

Have a great weekend 🙂

Light Watch 174: LED carpets!

30. September 2011 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: light watch, lighting and the economy, lighting of the future | Leave a comment

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