Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Exciting World of Government Purchasing and Carpet and Flooring Replacement Projects

As I work with government entities, I meet people of all job titles who find themselves in the role of facility manager: community and recreation center directors, librarians, parks department personnel, police, and firefighters. As you might expect, some, but not nearly all, are experts in public procurement. After all, public purchasing is a discipline unto itself!

The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS) and The Institute for Public Procurement (NIGP), list on their Principles and Practices website a list of global best practices for public procurement.  Here, you can find a list of 20 documents outlining best public procurement practices. It's a lot to know!

One method of best practice outlined at is the utilization of cooperative contracts, and the NIGP Sourcebook page highlights the U.S. Communities purchasing alliance at

If you are making a government purchase, Missouri and Kansas state statute allows you to bypass the usual bid process -with all the associated time consuming record keeping, regulations, and contractor meetings-by utilizing a cooperative purchasing agreement.

Why is this true? These contracts have been nationally solicited and competed already and offer you the lowest pricing available to governments, and as such, satisfy your purchasing requirements.

And, did you know you can purchase an entire, turn-key carpet or flooring installation?

For more information on others in the Kansas City area who have utilized U.S. Communities for their flooring installations, please take a look at.

The #2 Reason You Haven't Done That Flooring Replacement Project at Your Government Facility

If you are in purchasing or facilities, you have undoubtedly been tasked with undertaking a carpet or flooring replacement project at some point in your tenure.

The #1 reason project managers give for delaying their flooring project (or window treatment installation project) = lack of budget resources.

The #2 reason = uncertainty about the public procurement process.
Undertaking a major purchase or project can in the public sector can be confusing. You will need to know the answers to a number of questions, like "Where and for how long should I advertise a request for bids? How many bids am I required to get at minimum? Must I choose the lowest bid or the best value? How do I document the best value? How do I document the process? For how long must I keep records on the bid process after the project is completed?
But did you know that you can purchase your entire turn-key carpet or flooring project installation through a government purchasing program WITHOUT going through the bid process?
There are a number of government purchasing contracts through which you can directly purchase a complete, turn-key carpet or flooring installation. These nationally competed contracts are pre-bid, and allow governments and nonprofits to purchase goods and services at that  nationally competed rate. Because these are ALREADY nationally solicited and publicly bid on a nationwide basis, they satisfy customary 3-bid requirements, and state statute often allows you to purchase directly through the program since the bidding has already been done for you.

Make your project easy.  Find out more at

We can help!  In the Kansas City area, call us at 816 309 7121.   

How to Re-Carpet the Cube Farm

I'm in the flooring business- an accident in itself-, and that is how I totally, on accident, ended up in a morgue.  I had an appointment to go see someone at a university about a floor, in a lab.  And all of a sudden… there I was counting body bags on tables. Oh school...the lab...  Silly me.

It is an adventure to never quite know where I will end up.  It’s how I roll, really.  But, your task of taking on a re-carpeting project as a customer does not need to be one of uncertainty.

If you have “volunteered” to be in charge of the office re-carpeting project, you might have some basic questions, such as 1) “Should I use broadloom, or tile?” Or, 2) “How much is it going to cost to move all the furniture, computers, and wiring for our re-carpeting project?”  And, “What is broadloom?”
Here’s the quick answers:


While the industry --quite confusingly, I tell you, talks about carpet tile-- they are really referring to anything square, such as vinyl tile, ceramic tile, or porcelain tile, as “tile."  So, when we are talking about carpet tile, we mean carpet squares.  Broadloom refers to carpet as a roll good, that comes in one long piece.  Broadloom generally costs less, and is best used when budget is of the utmost importance, and when the space is empty, or has furniture that is easy to move, with plenty of adjoining space to move it to during the project.
Carpet squares cost more due to the cost of the additional rubber or vinyl backing that is added for dimensional stability- that is, its “lay flattishness” quality. But, it is easy to replace a single carpet tile in the wake of that coworker who is always spilling their coffee. And, they are a must when re-carpeting the cube farm, which leads us to point #2:


If you have cubicles, you might be thinking “Whoa. Replacing the carpet is going to cost us plenty, but how much is it going to cost to move all the computer wires and furniture?” And, then, somebody has to crawl around under the desks and hook all that equipment back up, and you are a little unsure you’re going to get it right. Because sometimes your keyboard won't do anything, but your neighbor's computer is going just crazy.
At this point, levitating furniture and carpet squares come in handy.  With industry lift equipment, we will simply lift your cubes up in the air as little as an inch, pull up the old carpet, and sneak those new carpet squares right under the cubes.

Voila!  New carpet, and you don’t have to move the furniture.  Or the wires.

Now you know.

We can help with your Kansas City area carpet installation project.  

All Flooring and Window Treatments, Kansas City

Friday, September 25, 2015

Flying Carpets, No: Floating Carpets, Yes.

Flying carpets don’t exist. But, did you know there is such a thing as a real floating carpet?
(Okay, not floating as in Luke Skywalker’s land speeder on Tatooine, but floating nonetheless. And if it were hovering like Luke’s red speeder, it would then technically be a flying carpet of which there are none, so there we are.) 

Floating carpet installations are completely glueless installations of carpet tile. Small air pockets created by the texturization of the backing of certain brands of carpet tile create a vacuum when laid on a smooth surface, and the carpet tile “sticks” to the floor- without any glue. (If you are thinking “Hey,that’s just a little bit like the party trick where you stick a spoon on your nose,” then let me tell you, you are absolutely right. It is kind of like that.)  Small squares of adhesive tape at corners on the underside of the carpet tile holds the entire floor together, creating a look completely identical to other carpet tile installations.

So, why would you use a floating installation?

Why, indeed? (I mean, other than the fact that we like neat little acts of physics trickery,like the spoon-on-the-nose trick? Or Luke’s land speeder. Now that is totally awesome.) 

First, a floating installation is ideal when carpet is desired in a space that is currently tiled with asbestos flooring. Despite its drawbacks, asbestos has an amazing resilience, and will look and perform great on floors throughout our city for many years to come. (Some of my non-facility manager customers are often horrified when I mention that their asbestos floors I see are looking great. They are so “What, we have asbestos?” Oh yeah. Yeah, you do. It is so everywhere, really.) 

Even so, we should hesitate to glue carpet tiles to asbestos. A few years down the road from your new installation, when it comes time to again replace the carpet tile, the possibility exists that with the forcible removal of the now-old carpet tile, the asbestos underneath may disengage from the subfloor. (Oops.)  Now your organization might be faced with hiring an expensive guy in a spacesuit. (As Scooby Doo would say, “Ruh-roh!”) In fact, many flooring installers will not glue carpet tiles to asbestos due to liability issues. We’ve seen schools with lots of asbestos-tiled classrooms that opt for carpet for the comfort and noise reduction it provides, and a floating install is ideal in this situation.

Secondly, many customers with dirty, worn carpet waffle when it comes to replacement due to uncertainty over whether their organization plans to stay in the same space long enough to make the investment in new carpeting worthwhile. But with a floating installation, you can simply take your carpeted floor with you! (Brings new meaning to the phrase in moving “everything but the kitchen sink,” doesn’t it?) The carpeted squares easily peel up from the corners, and because there is no glue, there is no mess.

We are committed to helping you achieve the look and installation you are wanting. Give us a call for any of your flooring replacement needs. We can help you with carpet broadloom, carpet squares, sheet vinyl, plank, or tile; ceramic, laminate, vinyl composite tile, hardwood, and vinyl or rubber steps and stringers.  We even install sports flooring. Finally, we also install all kinds of window treatments, like roller shades and screens and blinds of all types. (Which is not flooring, obviously, but we do it. And we’re great at it. Boo- yah!)  

And if you want to see how the floating carpet works, we will bring it to you. Just mention that you want to see “the carpet on the string thing.”  Oh yeah, and you need to be in the Kansas City area.  Sorry to you disappointed Floridians.  *I just wanted to say "Floridians."*

See our installer John explain a floating carpet tile installation we are doing at a Kansas City fire station on Youtube:

Most sincerely yours,
Your commercial carpet and flooring contractor,
All Flooring and Window Treatments, Kansas City