I get a lot of value from the networking alone. The individuals that you get to meet are all faced with similar challenges and being able to share resources and thoughts around different problems and issues is always of great value. The organization provides pieces of information I find critical to managing my business. The Operating Benchmarks Report (OBR) allows me to understand where I stack up against similarly sized manufacturers. The salary survey gives me an idea of whether I’m paying competitively based on region and skill set. The monthly flash bookings report gives me an idea where my rep returns are heading compared to the rest of the industry.
MCAA actually packages information to job categories that are pretty unique to our industry. Over the years we’ve seen those job surveys expand and provide good information and good insight. I enjoy reading the small surveys and things that just pop up from the membership as a need for information on a particular topic. What’s happening in bus community? What’s happening in the approvals community? What are some of the people doing in order to take advantage of opportunities or respond to changes in that space.
Each year we get a market forecast at the Industry Forum for the sales of process instrumentation and the projections for what is expected to come in the future. We use that for our planning and our expectations of next year’s sales.
What we find most valuable about MCAA is that it is the only organization of which we are a member that is focused on the instrumentation and automation industry. We find value for each of our functional areas with the industry benchmarks and our ability to measure our own success against our peer companies, and also the ability to network in regards to new opportunities and new technologies.