Apples and Oranges

Getting a new price for the maintenance of your fire equipment could mean your comparing apples with oranges. What does that mean?

The saying goes that you cannot compare apples to oranges, why, because they are different fruit. The same goes when buying a product or service, you need to define what you want so that you can compare the alternatives you are considering. Only once you know that you are comparing equivalent items can you then compare prices.

So if you are looking at changing a fire maintenance contractor what do you do? In our Managing Director’s firs book “Ready, Set… Fire – how to get ready, set up and manage a fire maintenance contractor” Alan provides a structured approach to getting comparable quotes for fire maintenance.

Here is a summary of the steps

  1. Prepare a brief or scope of works. Review the reports from your current provider and take a walk around your site to develop a list of what you need to have maintained. If you are unsure how to do this then providers like Fire & Emergency Services SA will do this for you for free.
  2. Ask a selected number of providers for a price. You can obtain the list of who to ask by talking to other people in your industry or reviewing industry websites like Fire Protection Association (FPA) Australia’s list of providers of choice. (
  3. Evaluate the proposals you receive. Price is not all that matters, you wouldn’t use an unlicensed electrician even if they were half the price. There are licenses and accreditations that a fire maintenance contractor should have, refer to our licensing blog and our accreditation blog
  4. Award and setup the contract. How you start the relationship determines how it will continue. Do it fairly but make sure you know what to expect and when.
  5. Manage the fire maintenance contractor. You wouldn’t ask a mechanic to do whatever they wanted to on your car, don’t let a fire contractor do it to your site. Know what they are doing each month and review their reports to ensure that the work is done and that there are no defects. If there are defects take action to get them fixed.

If you want more details on how this is done get a FREE copy of Alan’s book here.

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