Vans Graphics and Customer Service

Van graphics, customer service, and the mysterious triangle

Not long ago, Reliable Service Company (RSVC) asked us to put graphics on their new Nissan NV2500 vans. Jobs like this have three components:

  1. Graphic Design
  2. Materials
  3. Installation

For this project, components two and three were part of a customer service adventure.

RSVC wanted the job done by a specific date within a defined budget. Since we do graphic design in-house, component one wasn’t an issue.

Graphic positioning guide for RSVC NV2500 Vans

For the other two components, materials and installation, we needed help from our trusted vendors. It was here that the first signs of trouble appeared – they were booked and their materials and install costs exceeded RSVC’s budget.

Fortunately, I’m not one to give up. I looked for other vendors and found a few that said they could get the job done on time. But their prices varied from $1700 to $3300! For the same job! Glad I shopped around.

I chose the low price and scheduled the install for a Friday.

Unfortunately, that choice sailed me straight into the Project Management Triangle (it’s not as mysterious as the Bermuda Triangle, but I got lost just the same).

See, I wanted great work done fast at a low cost. And the Triangle responded with: “Hah Hah! Everyone wants a project that’s Cheap, Fast, and Good, but it’s only allowed two of those qualities. No project gets all three.”

My vendor offered a low price, he promised fast work, and I figured it would be good. But the Triangle made sure that something was lost to the inky depths. I didn’t know that until Monday morning when I saw photos from the vendor…

Graphics were in the wrong place and the vans didn’t match.

These vans don't match and graphics are in the wrong place

No. No. No. This was not happening. RSVC was a new client. This was the first job.

I told them what happened and called the vendor to help navigate my way out of the Triangle. We engaged in hopeful negotiations until I asked him to remove the errant graphics…


What the… He hung up on me!

My project was sinking fast and the vendor wouldn’t answer calls or emails. Hours later, my phone rang. It was the vendor. He gave me my money back and abandoned ship! I was left in a life boat with two giant vans covered in bad graphics.

I put out a distress call and one of my trusted vendors came to the rescue. Their install was flawless, priced fairly, and done according to their schedule.

RSVC Van with correct graphics

In the end, we delivered late. But we kept RSVC as a client because we honored their estimate and our efforts impressed.