ASA Insights
Oct. 05, 2017

ASA to Launch New Partnership with DigitalBranch™ Incubator at NETWORK2017
American Supply Association
Special Preview. At next week’s NETWORK Conference, ASA will announce a new partnership with the DigitalBranch™ Incubator, an innovative platform created to help PHCP-PVF distributors and manufacturers drive their digital transformation and eCommerce business. All ASA members are now eligible for complimentary access to the DigitalBranch™ Incubator. Access includes video training, monthly live webcasts and master classes, eCommerce platform reviews and summaries, invitation to a private Facebook community, weekly office hours and coaching, private content and early views into all new programming - all created by thought leaders and practitioners in the B2B eCommerce space. With an official launch at next week’s NETWORK Conference, ASA members can claim early access to the DigitalBranch™ Incubator today. Simply enter your name and email address to join today.More

Online Sales Tax Inching Toward Supreme Court
American Supply Association
The South Dakota Attorney General’s office filed a “Petition for a Writ of Certiorari” or a “writ” to the U.S. Supreme Court, requesting that they take up a recent case that was ruled in favor of online retailers Wayfair and Overstock. South Dakota law requires only those out-of-state retailers that transact more than $100,000 of business in the state or conduct more than 200 sales in any given year to collect and remit the sales taxes that are due. It provides a “safe harbor” for small online retailers (despite the fact that even the smallest local shop is required to collect and remit taxes). As noted in the writ, “Today, advances in network computing have made it far easier to collect different States' sales taxes. Implementing such technology poses a minimal obstacle for companies, like respondents here, that can instantly tailor their marketing and overnight delivery of hundreds of thousands of products to individual customers based on their IP addresses.” And “today, consumers purchasing online must input their address before they 'check out' with a credit card, giving online retailers a perfect opportunity to calculate and collect the applicable sales tax.”More

ASA Recognizes Six Members for Outstanding Record of Safety
American Supply Association
At next week’s annual convention, NETWORK2017 in Nashville, TN, three wholesaler-distributors and three manufacturers will receive ASA’s Member Safety Recognition Award. “This year, we saw another increase in participation in the awards program, including a number of first-time awardees and even brand new members to ASA diving right into the deep end of ASA’s programs and services. Once again our members are taking the lead in making safety in the workplace critical to our success,” said ASA Safety Committee Chairman Michael Place of the Dakota Supply Group. “As leaders for workplace safety, we have a special responsibility in helping our workers return home to their families each day in the same (or better) condition than they arrive to work. These companies embody this solemn promise,” said Place. The award was created in 2012 and recognizes distributors and manufacturers based on their company’s Total Case Incident Rate. Since the awards inception, participation by ASA member companies has doubled and has increased each year.More

The Macroeconomic Impacts of Hurricanes Harvey & Irma
ASA Advisor©
Although regional effects will certainly persist for some firms and communities, analysts at ITR Economics conclude there will be no prolonged change to the macro economy or the oil and gas industry. Using 2005 and Hurricane Katrina as a benchmark for this type of event, expect the price shocks to persist for two to five months before returning to a normal trend. Oil futures were in an accelerating trend before Harvey hit, and even without Harvey, ASA’s forecast already called for price rise through 2017. Natural gas prices were in a decelerating growth trend before August, but that trend will likely reverse for added short-term rise. Do not let these recent events in our southern region alter your plan for this year or next, if you were not in the immediate path of destruction. On a national level, analysts’ expectations for the industrial economy, construction markets, and GDP have not changed in the aftermath of Harvey and Irma. More

Time to Check Your Pulse
American Supply Association
Each month, ASA partners with Industry Insights and ITR Economics to compile data from wholesaler members that provides a snapshot on industry performance as well as how it relates to the broader economy. The value of this report is directly related to the number of wholesaler firms that contribute data each month - the greater the number of respondents, the more comprehensive and useful is the report and accompanying analysis. The participation deadline for wholesaler members to submit data for the September report is October 11th. Learn more about this FREE and EXCLUSIVE benefit that ASA members frequently use when making key decisions.More

Creating a Respectful Workplace

Creating a Respectful Workplace explores workplace respect, establishes self-respect, develops reciprocity with colleagues, and maintains respect when faced with stress, uncertainty, and change. Creating a Respectful Workplace includes an interactive case study, quiz questions, and a 10-question final test. Creating a Respectful Workplace is designed to help employees consistently demonstrate respect in their day-to-day interactions. From electronic to face-to-face communication, participants learn the behaviors that contribute to a respectful environment. More

The MDM Certification Program is Leadership Training Tailor-Made for You
American Supply Association
Don’t take our word for it. Here is what our third MDM graduate, Frank Carrillo of Hirsch Pipe & Supply, had to say about the program, “"The communication and leadership courses that the MDM Program offers has given me the skills that I need to succeed in my current and future roles." Frank completed the MDM Fast Track which is an option meant for people with greater experience within the distribution industry looking to further their Leadership Skills. LEARN MORE More

OSHA Unveils 2017 Top 10 Violations; Fall Protection Still Tops
Industrial Distribution
On Tuesday at the National Safety Council Congress & Expo in Indianapolis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced its annual preliminary list of the top 10 most frequently-cited workplace safety violations the organization encounters during safety inspections throughout the U.S. And to no surprise, Fall Protection remained No. 1 on the list that varies little year-to-year. In fact, the top 5 remained the same as last year — with Hazard Communication at No. 2; Scaffolding at 3; Respiratory Protection at 4; and Lockout/Tagout at 5. More

The Value of College Hires
Industrial Distribution
Here at GRN Coastal, we are firm believers in the college recruitment process. We highly encourage our distributor and manufacturer clients to make multiple college hires each year and have a formal process to nurture this entry-level talent within their organizations. When you hire a recent college grad, you are making an investment in your organization’s future. This investment, like all investments, needs to be managed, but the return can be significant. More

Read the Latest from Morris Beschloss
American Supply Association
This week's news: Why Coal Tops Global Spending in Multi-Trillion Dollar Electric Power Industry?

Want to read more from Beschloss? Click here to go to The Beschloss Perspective for a full archive of past articles.More

Professional Development Training: A Win for the Entire Team
Robert Half
Professional development training is overlooked and underappreciated as an employee retention and recruitment tool. In fact, it’s often one of the first things to go when budgets get cut. Here are some reasons why investing in the growth and development of employees is a smart idea that is evergreen.

Want help developing your own training program? Go to ASA-U Advisory Service today for more information.More