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Interim report card… Straight “A”s (almost) • CEMRA Forum, D&S Spring 2017

June 21, 2017 | By Sue Adler

Sue Adler is manager, Member Services, with Electro-Federation Canada.

June 21, 2017 – So far, 2017 has been a bit of a sleeper year for CEMRA members. Then, just when they thought not much was happening, several successes were achieved. The path hasn’t always been smooth, but CEMRA members have been working diligently, and—with support from Electro-Federation Canada members—they are heading to the front of the class!

Because I work closely with this wonderful group of members, I have taken the opportunity to “grade” the Class of 2017:

A+ Membership
CEMRA is in the midst of a membership boom: from December 2016 to the present, six new CEMRA members were welcomed into the EFC family. (I use the term “new” a bit loosely, considering several of them were EFC members in some capacity in their previous lives.) These new members would not have been able to join without the encouragement and support of other CEMRA and EFC members.

Those newest additions include: Agence Ricard (Montreal, Que.), Cascadia Sales (Surrey, B.C.), ElectraSpec Inc. (Sainte-Anne-des-Lacs, Que.), Heritage Sales & Marketing (Waterloo, Ont.), Ken Watt & Associates (Surrey, B.C.) and WSA Agency (Ottawa, Ont.). Welcome!


B- POS Project
CEMRA members are working closely with CMG (CEMRA Manufacturers Group, chaired by Tony DeCicco of Intermatic) to tackle the ongoing issue of POS reporting, and its effect on reps’ compensation for their hard work and commitment to the manufacturers they represent.

This ongoing project got a huge shot in the arm when NEMRA (CEMRA’s U.S. counterpart) offered to share its findings from a large-scale POS study it had undertaken. The CMG will combine this valuable resource with its own research, culminating in a panel discussion at CMG meeting at the EFC annual conference in San Diego.

There is room for growth and improvement. The next step is recommending a Best Practice for adoption by EFC members to more fairly and accurately compensate their hard-working reps.

A+ Committee Participation
At the upcoming annual meeting in San Diego, CEMRA will welcome its newest Executive Committee chair for the 2017-19 term: Greg Moylett of Intralec Electrical Products Ltd., who succeeds Tony Munden of Munden Enterprises.

As of April 12, 2017, CEMRA is able to have two representatives on EFC’s board of directors instead of just one; however, because this change was just implemented, there is only one CEMRA director for 2017.

In 2018, Jean-Sébastien Bercier of Desdowd Inc. will become chair of EFC’s National Advisory Council, which automatically garners him a seat on the EFC board.

B- Stats Program Launch
The development of a statistical program for CEMRA members has been on the table for some time. Its purpose, ultimately, is to highlight the value CEMRA reps bring to the manufacturers they represent.

This could be achieved by collecting information on the overall size of the rep business in Canada, assess what it contributes to the overall market, track trends, monitor growth year over year by region, then share the aggregate data with participating EFC manufacturers and distributors who, in return, provide CEMRA members access to their high-level quarterly results.

CEMRA members would be asked to submit their total electrical sales by quarter and region(s), mirroring the manufacturer format.

I recognize there are concerns over confidentiality, but rest assured: the EFC Stats program would not collect any information about a specific manufacturer or line. Instead, we are interested in aggregate dollar numbers, by region, which would then be shared with program participants.

But, until such time as the majority of CEMRA members and their manufacturer partners become more comfortable with the idea, the Stats Program remains a potential project.

A++ CEMRA Dinner & Cruise
Attending EFC’s annual conference in San Diego? Then you simply must sign up for the optional CEMRA Dinner & Cruise. Join event sponsors Desdowd Inc., Northwinds Corp., Adanac Sales, Intralec Electrical Products Ltd. and Munden Enterprises for a 3-hour private charter aboard the California Spirit: a 158-foot, tri-level vessel with seating and an outdoor viewing level. Enjoy a buffet dinner, dancing, and great camaraderie and networking with your peers.

Sue Adler is manager, Member Services, with Electro-Federation Canada, and manages all initiatives for the Canadian Electrical Manufacturers Representatives Association (CEMRA). She can be reached at sadler@electrofed.com. This column originally appeared in the Spring 2017 edition of Distribution & Supply.

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