Concentrating on clients
STAG Shopfittings is an industry-leading interior manufacturer and fit-out specialist based in Melbourne. Since forming in 1973, they have continually developed and expanded their facilities, skills and reputation. Today, they are well known for their dedication to quality, and their ability to completeprojects on time and on budget.
“We achieve success with any project by providing the right team,” says Brent Watts, Senior Product Manager at the company. “Our depth of resources allows us to assign the best people, with the right skills, to ensure a well-managed project delivery every time.”
Over the last 40-plus years, STAG has worked with a number of luxury retail brands, including Chanel, Prada, Estee Lauder, Tiffany & Co, and many more. The company has been dealing with these kinds of international brands for many years now, and Brent anticipates they will be working with them for many more years to come.
“The work we do is the top of the tree, as far as fit-outs go in Australia,” he says. “That’s the work we were set up to do, and the work we’re still doing today.”
Meeting high expectations
STAG Shopfittings has earned the loyalty of their many high-end clients due their unrivalled attention to detail. According to Brent, this attention is demonstrated by every member of STAG’s team, from their skilled workers in their factory, to their experienced architects and technical designers – and everyone in between.
“We have a good crew of office, project management, and factory staff,” he says. “We have the infrastructure in place to deal with our international clients and meet their high standards.”
STAG’s attentiveness also comes from being exclusive, Brent adds. As a company, STAG ensures they never have too many jobs going on at once, so they never have to compromise on quality or customer service. In addition, every job the company has is overseen by an experienced and committed Project Director, with support from dedicated Project Managers, production, and technical staff.
“We don’t take on too much work,” Brentsays. “We concentrate on the clients we have, and we’re always ready to step up to meet their needs.”
“We have a culture wherein employees at all levels buy into and engage with our projects,” he adds. “We make sure they have a great appreciation for their work and their goals, and they’re all able to contribute to the best of their abilities. The employees that don’t share that passion haven’t stayed with us. So we have a good crew at every level.”
Most members of STAG’s team have now been with the company for many years. Only recently, Brent says they celebrated five people who have had 20-year careers in the business. He estimates that about a third of the company’s workforce has been around just as long or longer.
STAG enjoys similarly longstanding relationships with suppliers and external tradespeople as well, Brent adds.
“We put a lot of time into educating our trades,” he explains. “We’re working with luxury retail brands, so we really bring them in and go over their scope of works so they have a comprehensive understanding of what they’re getting into. We make sure they’re prepared and can work to our timetable.”
As a result of that time investment, STAG Shopfittings has built a lasting roster of skilled subcontractors and trades – all of whom understand the quality that STAG expects, and are capable of delivering it on time and on budget.
Over the years, STAG Shopfittings has delivered a number of high profile, high quality projects across the globe. That history of success has not gone unnoticed. Most recently, at the 2014 Master Builders Association of Victoria’s Excellence in Construction Awards, the company was recognised with an accolade for Excellence in Fit out for the high quality result they achieved at the Chanel Flagship store in Melbourne.
The award-winning project includes two-storeys of luxury retail space, as well as an administration area, a storage area, and an area that Chanel uses to provide merchandising training for the whole region.
“That project was five years in the making,” explains Brent. “It was more than a just a retail store – it was their retail centre in this part of the world. We heard about it very early on, and we were involved since the very beginning, so we were always on the same page.”
The design of that project used specialist fabrics, finishes and art pieces that were sourced internationally from a range of world-renowned artists and suppliers. According to Brent, everything was chosen in collaboration with Chanel’s architects in Hong Kong, and every piece of material was selected to complement and enhance the store’s jewellery and accessory selection.
The project was not without its challenges, however. Between the time STAG tendered on the project and the time they built, Brent says the design underwent many significant changes.
“But it all led to a better job at the end,” he says. “We just had to adapt to those changes as they came along. Design in the fine jewellery sector is constantly evolving, and that’s what made the job interesting.”
“It was certainly the pinnacle of our work in the last 10 years,” he says.
Moving forward, Brent hopes to see STAG Shopfittings reach new heights in the years to come. The key to doing that, he says, is continuing down the path the company is already on.
“We see ourselves doing more of the same, and embracing the international clients that come to Australia,” he concludes. “We want to stick to our core business, because that’s what we’re good at. We don’t want to take on more work just for the sake of it. We want to further develop existing relationships and continue meeting the high expectations of our clients.”