Here is a product description for our fictional company, Terra Engineering. Remember to be clear about what it is you are trying to sell. You should leave no doubt in your reader's mind about the products and/or services you are offering.
The following section will identify the proposed operational plan for Terra Engineering. Included are the general operating procedures, human resources, insurance, and working capital requirements of the business. Also included is a table outlining the office space requirements, asset acquisition and an outline of Terra Engineering's operational workflow.
General Operating Hours
Terra Engineering intends to operate Monday thru Friday from 9 am to 5 pm. Terra Engineering will be operational year round.
Mr. Johnson and Mr. Smith will be the sole employees of Terra Engineering for the first two years of operation. When additional human resources are needed, Terra Engineering has identified the persons qualified and able to assist on a contract basis for the same rate as the owner. They include:
Mr. Wes Aaron, and environmental engineering technician will be sub-contracted to complete work as needed. It is estimated that Mr. Aaron will eventually be hired full time by Terra Engineering once demand warrants growth.
Mrs. Leanne White holds a Masters in Environmental Engineering and will also be sub-contracted to perform work for the company. Eventually, Terra Engineering intends to hire Mrs. White full time.
Mr. Charles Pearson holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in Environmental Engineering and has a vast technical experience base in the environmental assessment area and will be retained when needed.
Once the business reaches 60% of its operational capacity this will represent 1300 hours, Terra Engineering will offer the above environmental professionals full time positions. Also at this time, an administrative assistant will be sought.
A professional user of Auto Cad will be sought to perform various jobs for the company. It is unknown at this time who will fill this position, however, job advertisements will be put in the local papers and organizations to attract a good pool of respondents.
Once hired, all employees will be covered by the Workers Safety and Insurance Board and covered for Employment Benefits.
Terra Engineering will have to incur costs for business liability insurance. The estimated cost for this requirement is $4,000 per year.
Operating Capital Requirements
Due to the demands imposed at start up, Terra Engineering will require that the business have sufficient working capital to meet all operational responsibilities of the business for the first three months.
It is estimated that the business will need approximately $20,000 in working capital to sustain and ensure the business meets all opening and on-going financial obligations.
Also, throughout the year there tends to be periods of low activities. Consequently, the company will experience financial pressures during these months. While much of this time will be spent developing proposals and marketing strategies, there will be a need to maintain sufficient working capital to cover these periods.
A long term strategy to maintain a positive cash flow during these periods will be to diversify the company and develop environmental training programs for certain communities. These training programs will be given during these months.
Office Requirements and Asset Acquisitions
Terra Engineering will lease office space on located at:
459 Duncan Avenue, Suite 1003
The office space is leased and will accommodate the necessary office equipment such as computers, fax machine, photo copier, and other engineering equipment. This facility will require an estimated $5,000 to renovate in a style that is aesthetically pleasing to the clients as well as the owners.
These facilities will be leased at $500 per month. In addition, Terra Engineering will require specialized environmental equipment. These are the estimated costs associated with those investments:
Office Renovations $5,000
Office Equipment and Furniture $6,000
Specialized Field Equipment $27,000
Specialized Software $10,000
Total Capital Costs $48,000
The above noted capital purchases will increase work effectiveness, enhance professionalism and will prepare the business for the forecasted demand for services. Further, the equipment may be leased out to partner associates during times of low activity.
As with any consulting firm, the operational workflow for the business is quite uniform and simple to follow. The following is a step by step outline of how contracts are completed on a regular basis:
Step 1 Terra Engineering will respond to a request for proposal (RFP) with a professionally prepared proposal for service;
Step 2 At this point, the potential contract is awarded to either Terra Engineering or other companies which submitted proposals for services. Therefore, communication is made by the contract to the successful consulting firm. If Terra Engineering is successfully selected to perform the work, the contract is then triggered to begin;
Step 3 Terra Engineering will collect a deposit from the client and will begin the project. Deposit values vary depending upon the size and location of the project;
Step 4 Terra Engineering will go ahead and start the project while keeping communication with the client. Once the project reaches 60% - 70% completion, funds will be given to the business by the client to complete the rest of the work;
Step 5 Once the work is completed to the satisfaction of both, Terra Engineering and the client, the final payment for the contract will be made.
The above operational workflow is very standard, easy to understand and within industry's norm.
Terra Engineering will accept cash, cheque and visa payments. These payments are well within industry standards. The business will provide credit to larger account holders.
It is estimated that the length and terms of payments are net 30 for all clients. This will allow the business to avoid cash flow problems. Late payment charges are 2% of the projects outstanding balance.