Closeout and Warranty
Dear Sonny and Cher*,
When I was talking to one of our clients who flies jumbo jets for American Airlines, I tried to use a plane analogy for project closeout. I said that we wanted to land the plane thoughtfully, softly, and well. I'll never forget his response. He said that all of his passengers should have their chiropractor on speed dial because he likes to drop the plane out of the sky right now. That true story notwithstanding, we like to land the plane softy.
When your project is substantially complete and ready for the intended use, we meet at the site to together inspect the entire project (we call this a Walkthrough) and produce a list of all items remaining to be completed (we call this a Closeout List). At the end of that meeting, we agree on the items remaining to be completed and schedule a date and time for a second meeting at the site to confirm that all Closeout List items have been completed (we call this Checkoff). We agree on and sign the Closeout List, and we agree that items are completed at Checkoff and sign the Checkoff as well.
Checkoff signals the end of the project. We send the final invoice following Checkoff. But, it does not mean that we disappear. We are still responsive and present as we move to the warranty phase of your project.
P.S. The surprise reunion you did on Late Night with David Letterman in 1987 was the perfect closeout to decades of singing together.
*Full disclosure: not only have we never worked for Sonny or Cher, we've never actually met them. Indeed, I'm not sure we've ever been in the same city at the same time. They seem like fun people, though, and we would be happy to build a home for them. If any of you are close friends with them, we would be grateful for an introduction!