Sutton Siding and Remodeling in Springfield, Ill., uses two meetings and a series of checklists to efficiently transfer information from sales to production. The first meeting takes place after the contract is signed and includes the salesperson and customer. The customer and a representative of the company review and sign off on the plans, drawings, and selection sheets.

After the meeting, the package is reviewed by the contract coordinator, whose job it is to set up the project in its initial stages and make sure customers make proper selections. The file is then passed to vice president of production, Mike Sutton, who goes over it with the production supervisor.

The second meeting takes place right before the work begins. The contract coordinator, salesperson, and field superintendent, convene in the office, or if necessary, on the jobsite. The client may choose to attend. The group goes through the paperwork -- the job cost, allowances, selection sheets -- and agrees on the scope of the work.

Lead carpenters come to the office every Thursday to discuss the job with other superintendents. The field staff also receives checklists to track hours, subcontractors, client communication, and change orders.