“It may come as a surprise to some homeowners or office workers who take building products around them for granted, but the innovation, research, design and ultimately the manufacture of building products is driven by the personal passion of the people behind them,” says Shelley Galliver, marketing director at Eva-Last.
Galliver says there can be many reasons for the development and innovation in product categories. “There is always a first principle – that the product needs to solve a problem or make life easier. If you take composite decking as an example, there was a need to overcome the traditional drawbacks of using hardwood timber products while providing a high-performance and attractive alternative. The outcome is an environmentally friendly product that is stronger and more durable than natural wood while still aesthetically beautiful.”
“Around the world at any given time there are people whose lives have been improved and made more enjoyable through the installation of a product that brings both peace of mind and long-lasting performance. That product began with a design engineer who was driven to come up with a solution, and the most successful outcomes are usually driven by people with a passion for what they do. People who design tend to love their jobs because they’re making others’ lives better,” says Galliver.
After the design phase, rigorous testing is a crucial part of making sure no user or owner will experience product failure, but also helps build the crucial product promise of what that customer can expect from their purchase. “It’s a daily approach the Japanese call kaizen – continuous improvement. That’s the expression of a love for doing the best work we can possibly do. How do we make a better product tomorrow than what exists today? When we see successful and beautiful installations that have surpassed client expectations and their pleasure is obvious, it’s all worth it for us,” Galliver adds.
To make these designs come to life, it then takes the transfer of one type of technology to another: from software to physical materials. Manufacturing world-class products means quality checks and assurance at every step of the Eva-Last product line, as well as careful wrapping and stacking to be shipped to 32 countries around the world. Each product – even if it is one of thousands – must arrive at its final destination looking as good as when it left the manufacturing facility, and that takes a lot of constant attention and care.
For distributors in those countries, each product is like a wrapped gift that presents the business with an opportunity to make a sale and revenue. As marketing director, Galliver has the chance to interact throughout Eva-Last’s value chain. “Even merchandising and packaging require a great deal of thought and care because we have to get end customers to see the benefits of our products to fall in love with them. Once that happens, it is very satisfying to see the end result and know that we’ve contributed to creating a better environment for people to enjoy. The most gratifying part is when we see the passion we have for our products mirrored in distributors, contractors and homeowners. This valentine’s day, we encourage all our customers and those who have bought other great building materials to enjoy and appreciate the ways they contribute to our lives,” she says.