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Author: Mike P

Blog Posts by Mike P

How To Turn Your Wall Into a Whiteboard

How To Turn Your Wall Into a Whiteboard

Tue Aug 3 2021
By: Mike P

Whiteboard walls are the truest form of unfiltered expression. There’s no barrier to entry; if you have an idea, you can write it on the wall. It’s that simple. However, turning a wall into a whiteboard is a more daunting task than the internet would have you believe. If you’re going the DIY method, you’ll need to follow these steps to turn your wall into a whiteboard:

  1. Strip paint
  2. Repair drywall to create a smooth surface (sand)
  3. Apply primer to the wall
  4. Depending on which route you choose to take, you’ll need to apply either an industrial adhesive to stick a laminate sheet on the wall or apply specialty paint to actually provide the wall with dry-erase properties.
As a concept, these DIY ideas sound great, but in actuality, DIY whiteboard walls require hours of prep and are difficult to remove after installation. To take things a step further, DIY whiteboard wall applications are not durable, often leaving behind ghost marker stains with repeated use. If durability and aesthetics are qualities you're looking for in your whiteboard wall, you'll need to look elsewhere.

Commercial-grade whiteboard walls are usually designed using a series of steel-backed panels that mount directly to the wall, providing an element of durability and magnetism that you cannot find in traditional DIY whiteboard walls. Over the past few years, the whiteboard wall panel space has diversified, incorporating dozens of material options to choose from, the most common of which include painted-steel, porcelain, and glass surfaces.

Before deciding on a whiteboard wall panel, you need to keep in mind that professional installers are typically billed at an hourly rate. A whiteboard wall installation can range anywhere from 30-minutes to days depending on the number of walls and classification of whiteboard panels in play. For instance, whiteboard wall panels that designate specific left and right-end panels require installers to fully layout and map exact panel locations prior to installation. In contrast, wall panels without designations can be installed in any order, directly out of the box. Alternatively, whiteboard wall panels that use splines and mounting trim will require installers to make cuts and modifications to the material prior to the install. While these modifications and requirements may only seem like minor pain points, multiplying these requirements across dozens of walls and panels can quickly amount to hours of additional labor costs.

At Magnatag, we've developed a line of magnetic whiteboard wall panels that streamline the installation process to make it fast, simple, and secure while maintaining a durable writing surface. Our line of WhiteWall® dry-erase wall panels utilize a patented mounting bracket system that can be installed in a matter of minutes with the help of a power drill, level, and a few additional hands. All that's required for installation is to mount the brackets onto the wall and slide panels into their designated position—it's that simple. Since WhiteWall panels are designed with precision-formed self-edges, you can create a smooth, uninterrupted writing surface without the need to specify end panels or modify mounting brackets. We also manufacture WhiteWalls using our proprietary porcelain-like Magnalux® dry-erase surface. Magnalux is a painted enamel surface is evenly applied to steel that will not stain, crack or fade after years of daily use.

Before you start looking into turning your wall into a whiteboard, it's important to be mindful of the two primary elements that go into a successful whiteboard wall transformation: ease of installation and durability. While cost-effective, DIY whiteboard wall transformations can take hours to prep and fail to provide the long-lasting durability found in commercial whiteboard wall panels. Commercial-grade whiteboard wall panels that rely on splines and mounting trim can take hours to install, and in turn, increase labor costs. Magnatag WhiteWall magnetic dry-erase whiteboard wall panels combine the best properties of commercial whiteboard wall panels with a simple installation process that you can complete in minutes. If you're in the market to transform your wall into a creative hotspot, Magnatag is the best place to start your journey.

The Secret To Perfecting Sales Territory Mapping

The Secret To Perfecting Sales Territory Mapping

Wed Apr 29 2020
By: Mike P

Ask any small business owner what the most trying part of managing a company is, and they’ll likely tell you the same story: it doesn’t take a genius to scale a business to the point where it warrants existing, but generating enough growth to ensure that the company remains stable and profitable for years to come is an obstacle few overcome.

It’s estimated that somewhere around 65% of all small businesses in the U.S. close within their first ten years of operation. Of course, there are thousands of companies across the county that remain stable and profitable well beyond the ten-year mark. So what’s the secret that’s kept the remaining 45% afloat? “We focus on feedback,” says Jen Moon, Marketing Manager at Kaput Products. Kaput recently celebrated their 20th year in the pest control industry and continue to show signs of growth after two decades of operation.

The company’s business model runs through a diverse network of distributors and dealers that serve a specific territory. Customers looking to take care of a pest infestation must go directly through their local dealer to acquire any of Kaput’s products. If there’s no local dealer available, aspiring pest-exterminators in the making are encouraged to reach out to the company directly, highlighting potential gaps in the company’s distribution model. New territories are added to their distribution map regularly thanks to contributions from their traveling sales team and user feedback loop.

Part of Jen’s responsibilities at Kaput involve tracking, managing, and updating the company’s regional map as it evolves throughout the business year. Up until a few months ago, the entirety of the company’s distribution and travel data was only logged online, which was fine. Kaput’s database was still regularly updated, sales team members were still visiting new prospects, and the company was still discovering new territorial expansion opportunities; the only issue was that the software wasn’t easily accessible for quick reference points. “If I want to look something up as a quick reference, I want it to be easy to access,” Jen explained.

A few months ago, Jen reached out to the team at Magnatag Visible Systems to find an easy to access tool for managing Kaput’s territorial map. The solution: a large format, full color, magnetic dry-erase map of the United States. Standing eight feet wide and over five feet tall, the map is designed to outline individual cities and their corresponding counties, making it the perfect tool for identifying gaps in Kaput’s distribution strategy.

“We ordered our map alongside some of the colored magnets to use for marking territories for our dealers and distributors. We use one color to mark the distributors that currently carry our baits and another color to represent potential dealers… We also use a separate color to identify pests that are commonly associated with a specific location. Using this as a big picture, I can fill in the gaps in our marketing program as needed.”

Today, Jen and the rest of the Kaput team use the digital software and physical dry-erase map in tandem, with each tool serving its own purpose; the software logs and archives their regional dealer information while the map visualizes opportunities in their distribution network at a glance.

For over fifty years, Magnatag Visible Systems has developed high-quality printed magnetic dry-erase boards. If you’re looking to bring a personal and motivational approach to your project management strategy, contact us at sales@magnatag.com or give us a call at (800) 624-4154.
Creating a Dedicated Space For Project Management

Creating a Dedicated Space For Project Management

Mon Apr 20 2020
By: Mike P

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a city in the US with a deeper connection to its historical roots than St. Augustine, Florida. The city holds the honor of being the oldest continuously occupied settlement of European origin in the United States, and it shows: just taking a stroll down one of the city’s many cobblestone streets invokes the type of old town, coastal-colonial that feels as if you just stepped off a time machine.

Preserving this moment in time would be impossible if not for the help of the city’s extensive zoning regulations and efforts. The plans are designed to preserve the historic character of many buildings in the area through a series of compliance checks that are regulated via the city’s historic preservation board. Due to the intricate nature of many of the board’s regulations, the city regularly pulls from a select pool of contractors that are familiar with Architectural Guidelines for Historic Preservation (AGHP) when undertaking new restoration projects.

For local contractor Behst Builders Inc, historic preservation is embedded in the company’s DNA. Prior to opening Behst, Owner, Jon Benoit spent years working as a project manager for a non-profit housing development corporation that specialized in rehabilitating single-family homes within historic neighborhoods. Thanks to his expertise with historic renovations, the contractor is now recognized as one of the city’s go-to resources for historical projects. However, Jon can’t take all the credit for the company’s success: Carey Murphy keeps the business running by filling the vital role as the company’s Office Manager.

A few months ago, Carey reached out to the team at Magnatag Visible Systems® when Behst’s online project management software failed to meet their needs. After scouring the web for a project management system that could propitiate everyone on staff, Carey discovered Magnatag’s Project StepTracker® Magnetic Whiteboard System and quickly incorporated it into their internal communication strategy.

The whiteboard system is designed to list active projects vertically along the left side of the board, with individual project milestones adjacent to each project. Once a specific construction phase is complete, the designated Project Manager takes one of the system’s double-sided magnets and places it below the completed project milestone, communicating that the team is ready to move on to the next phase of construction. In addition, the company also uses the board’s notes section to highlight and sign off on any extra expenses that may arise during a project’s development. If an additional expense is needed, Project Managers are required to make a note of it on the board, which Jon approves in between shifts.

“We were looking for something that our team could use as a focal point for discussing projects; the StepTracker® whiteboard is the perfect tool for us. When you work in an office where people are constantly juggling their time between being on location and in the office, it’s essential to have a space in your building that’s strictly dedicated to discussing project developments. Having something that you can walk to and manually update should be a standard for anyone in the construction industry,” notes Carey.
If you’re looking to rethink how your company develops and tracks projects, please visit magnatag.com/project or give us a call at 800 624 4154.