BAGS was established in 1998 and is now known as one of the premier glazing sub-contractors in California. BAGS was founded by Nick Bagatelos and a year later his brother Chris joined the business.
Chris Bagatelos is the Chief Executive Officer of BAGS and after their NACC process was complete he shared with us insights on the company and the benefits of going through certification.
Q: Your company is not the typical contract glazier- you do so much more and have a great focus on innovation. Tell me about your organization and how you have set out on the positive path you are on?
Chris Bagatelos: BAGS, Inc. designs, engineers, fabricates and installs exterior facades for complex multi-story buildings. We are a nimble operation that is committed to steady growth, using the past 30 years to hone our skills and build a formidable/accomplished team that says YES to innovation!
BAGS, Inc. has garnered countless opportunities and stood out in the noisy construction field, through our desire to evolve, doing business with ingenuity, integrity and commitment to quality. We consistently innovate by looking at new and improved ways to structure and operate our manufacturing plants, by incorporating leading edge technology and tools into our workflow and by investing in the people that makes this all possible.
Q: What is your all-time favorite installation and why?
CB: My favorite installation of all time is the Money Store. We installed this project in the early stages of our business and the Money Store was eventually bought out by First Union. At the time, this multi-story building was a big undertaking. The glass on the project was 1” insulated with a PVB laminated dot pattern. The architect wanted to use a glass vendor in Europe, but we were able to source the glass in the US which helped cut our lead times in half.
We completed the project on time, on budget and we passed all the tests. This project was a great learning experience for my brother and me. Every time I drive by this project I smile because it reminds me of when the business was just getting started.
Q: What’s the biggest business challenge you face today?
CB: Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems, Inc. has established innovation as one of our core competencies. Therefore, our biggest challenge is finding exceptional people with curtain wall experience, that want to use the tools of innovation to change the way they’ve always done business.
Q: What the most positive change you have seen in the glass and glazing industry from when you started until now?
CB: When my father, brother and I started our first glazing business nearly 30 years ago, we did business via pen and paper, typewriters and letters, and hand-sketched architectural drawings and take-offs. We believe that the “speed of communication” is where we have seen the most dramatic shift during our careers. We started our business using handwritten documentation and “snail mail”, began faxing documents and now we receive hundreds of emails and text messages every day. Hand-sketches from owners and architects, which moved to 2D scanned and printed drawings, and now into desktop computer-based 3D and soon 4D & 5D drawings. This rapid shift is dramatically improving the speed, efficiency and accuracy of how we do business.
Q: Why did Bagatelos decide to pursue certification?
CB: As we have said numerous times, BAGS, Inc. is committed to SMART growth and innovation and being the BEST at what we do… Committing the resources to achieve the NACC certification, could only serve to better our company and allow for the validation of what we are doing well and shine a light on areas where we can grow and improve. Therefore, the NACC Certification process has made BAGS, Inc. better, made our employees better, and gives our clients an enhanced product at the end of each project.
Q: How did the preparation for certification change or improve your company processes?
CB: In many aspects, the certification process served as validation of the many procedures that we already had in place to build and grow our business.
In addition, the process worked as an invitation for BAGS, Inc. to assign resources to arrange our content, tools, processes and procedures in a clear and structured format that can be shared, taught and administered with ease and consistency.
Q: Was there anything in the process that surprised you? If so what?
CB: Yes, the process was surprisingly in-depth and rigorous, and yet, our team pulled together quite efficiently and quickly developed the structure, details and procedures that were required for certification.
Q: How will the certification help you with future bids or proposals?
CB: We hope that others in the construction field, including owners, architects and general contractors will see the value of the NACC Certification and use it as a way to distinguish companies that are complete and thorough in their processes and procedures. We anticipate that others will see this certification as offering a deeper level of transparency into an organization’s overall health and ability to consistently perform at a high-level.
Q: Now that you are done with the certification process are you pleased to have gone through it and would you recommend to others?
Yes, we are quite satisfied with the work we have done to accomplish certification and believe that when companies are ready to take their business to the next-level and commit the resources necessary to complete the relevant document and tracking procedures that it can only serve to make your company better!
To learn more about the North American Contractor Certification process please visit www.NACCProgram.com
To learn more about Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems, Inc. (BAGS) please visit http://bagatelos.com