Focus Group: How Can Product Sourcing be Simplified?

Never a fan of sitting on our laurels, we used the summer lull to dig deep into the workings of the industry, and hosted our first Designer Focus Group, dedicated to learning about the nitty gritty details, the trials, tribulations and processes in general, that designers undertake to specify products in projects. The findings were incredibly eye-opening, and we recommend all manufacturers to take notes.

Love That Design’s focus groups allow the A&D community to gain deeper insight into the workings of the regional industry, to understand what designers truly need, and hence be able to deliver on a platform that exists to serve this very market.

Participating Designers

From the top right to left: Lamya Maher, Broadway Interiors; Amber Peters, Roar; Bruno Gomez, Dewan Architects; Regina Mathews, AAID; Vijay Nambiar, SAY Studio; Carina Lima, SBID; Zoe Burnett, RSP Architects; Shiam Shibl, DLR Group; Adriana Graur, dwp; Maud Capet, .ema; Marcel Van Der Merwe, Gensler; Mira Kurniawan, Kristina Zanic Consultants

For decades, designers have continued to specify products in their projects in whichever way worked best for them, google searching styles and applications, or relying on what was in their product library, or recently deposited to their desk by an eager dealer. Meanwhile, the manufacturers of these products maintained their traditional ways of introducing these wares, be it through catalogues, dropping off samples, hosting lunch-and-learns, mass emailing, and more. This entire section of our industry is fairly organic, unstructured and, in short, chaotic. And it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that this is, by no means, the most efficient pathway to getting the perfect product into your perfect project.

Imagine the time lost in hours of internet searching for that ideal chair, only to find that it’s not available in the MENA region, or to find the one supplier who will in turn inform you that it will take about half a year to get here!

Even more frustrating would be to find the authentic supplier for this region. And then there are sustainability considerations. That in itself is a massive conversation, one that we will unfold here.

For these reasons and many more, our first focus group discussion was solely about products, and their journey from the factories to the beautifully designed interiors that we see. We thrashed out the details of the processes involved, the sources, the logistics, barriers, frustrations, sustainability and product material declarations, or the lack of them… anything and everything. Here are the findings:

Event Gallery

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