Here are some of the main criteria that you will need to consider
Contract or Domestic
The main criteria is whether a project is a contract (non-domestic) or domestic. Many interior design businesses handle both contract and domestic work however many will only handle contract and not domestic, and vice versa.
Value of project and scale of services
You will want to ensure that the interior design company can take on your sized project and that it can provide the breadth of services that you require.
Structure of interior design services and means of presentation
Will the services be structured in accordance with the needs of your project and the means of presentation and specification be in alignment with your project?
If you are running a small project, perhaps for your own home, an informal means of presenting ideas may suit you, with samples and sketches being sufficient. However if you are running a larger, more formally structured project you will want to ensure that the interior design team can present material of a standard that is in line with the rest of the construction team’s. Not only detailed plans and elevations will be required but possible CAD modelling and certainly detailed specification documents. Our system of selection allows you to view, up front, which presentation methods design companies offer to ensure you can select those who will fit in best to your project team and requirements.
How do you want to pay?
Do you want to pay a fixed fee or by the hour? How do you want your goods, or client’s goods, to be purchased and brought or installed on site?
The Interior Design Showcase system is designed to provide transparency from interior design businesses in how they charge. Some companies, as well as providing design services, may supply goods on a reseller basis, which means they may not be specifying from a completely independent perspective for your project.
If you have specialist requirements on your project you will need to know whether an interior design company can provide these.
Insurances and Liability
You will want to know that you are protected if the company you appoint causes damage.
The free pitch
Your project team may be considering asking interior designers to provide a “free pitch”, that is, design ideas, concepts and schemes up front in order to win the work. The fact that this is a controversial practice we shall put to one side for the moment, but it will be helpful to be able to ascertain which companies might consider engaging in this process.