Published on 1st November, 2019
When setting up any business, you must be prepared to face and overcome the various challenges that will be thrown your way. And the uniform embroidery industry is no exception. No business is purely plain sailing, but the rewards you can reap from setting up a school uniform shop are second to none.
If you’re in the discovery and research phase of whether starting one up is a good idea, this post will help you outline all the speedbumps you can expect to encounter. It’ll also provide the details of all the usual requirements that uniform embroidery businesses have and how partnering with Midwest can ensure you a smooth business experience.
Let’s start with your biggest and most valuable asset – your embroidery machine. To be able to embroider your products, you’re going to need a machine that’s capable to do so. School uniforms usually feature crests and other intricacies that can’t be performed on a standard machine, so you need to make sure that you have the right one in place for your company.
Not only does your embroidery machine need to have advanced features, but it needs to be able to cope with the capacity of orders to turn around in a timely fashion. Uniform embroidery businesses usually opt for a single-head machine – and sometimes have two of these.
Single-heads are perfect for the amount of embroidery that uniform stores require. Usually, they’ll have a commission embroiderer too that’ll have multi-head machines. They’ll be sent the larger orders so that they can get them boxed off quicker. These orders will be for anywhere between 10 and 100 products.
You needn’t worry about any additional software. Although the crests and badges are intricate and tricky to design, this’ll be outsourced usually. It’s cheaper this way, rather than forking out on a salary for an employee to do this. The crest will be sent off to a digitising company, who’ll then process the design and send it back.
Larger embroidery businesses may have their own graphic designer who knows how to do this but it’s unlikely that a school uniform shop will. Once you’ve requested the design once, it’s then yours to use freely on other products should people from the same school come and make orders.
Once you already have the crest, it’ll save your business time and money, Therefore, you can start churning orders out quicker and focusing more on delighting your customers so they return or recommend you to another parent.
As we mentioned earlier, no business operates without any roadblocks from time to time. And if they say they do, they’re lying. But undoubtedly, the biggest challenge you’ll face in a uniform embroidery shop is the back to school rush before term starts again after the summer holidays.
As a new school year begins, every pupil will likely need new uniforms. And not everybody is kind enough to stagger it across the holidays. Everything seems to be a last-minute dash, so you’re going to have to be prepared to be equipped enough for them orders coming thick and fast.
For this reason, uniform embroiderers tend to need a machine that can operate at high speeds. Remember that all orders are different, depending on the complexity of the crests and badges some orders will take longer than others. A typical badge will take around 20 minutes with 10,000 – 15,000 stitches per minute.
Shops may have a multi-head, high-speed machine in the back or an industrial unit, along with the single-head in the front. Or, if demand gets too much and they can’t cope, they’ll use their commission embroiderer to offload some of their workload on.
Why don’t uniform embroidery stores just invest in more equipment than getting help from their commission embroiderer? Well, if they have the budget too then that’s completely fine to do so. But more equipment usually has a knock-on effect on costs.
Not only will you have to shell out for the initial investment in the machine, but you may also need more staff to operate it and a bigger premises to fit the equipment in too.
At Midwest, we’re experts in all things embroidery. Not only this, we’re dedicated to helping our loyal customers achieve their maximum potential. As a business, we believe that you should always provide your customers with the best support that’s possible – and that’s something that we put into practice every day.
When buying a new embroidery machine, it can be forgiven if you’re not up to speed with the running of it. Like any new technology, you need to get a feel for all the functionalities before you can be fully confident with it. At Midwest, we’re here to help you use the machine. Whether it’s demonstrations or sharing our top tips and experienced guidance, our team are always on hand to support you.
Aside from receiving a top-quality embroidery machine, you’ll be benefiting from the experience of our expert staff. It’s not just the product that we supply, we aim to supply a full customer experience that’ll leave you nothing short of delighted.
Without an embroidery machine, you don’t have a business, so you need to make sure that you choose the right one for your company. It’s a huge decision and a big investment, so don’t rush into things – we know it’s easy to do so with the excitement of running your own company.
So, to help you with your decision, we’ve created a comparison guide that tells you everything you need to know about single-head machines and multi-heads too. As we explained, some uniform embroidery shops choose a combination of both machines to achieve maximum output.
Find out which one suits your set up the best and grab your free copy today.