Industry Intelligence

Ask an Expert From: Products Finishing, from Aluminum Anodizers council

Posted on: 1/1/2004

Ask any manager to name some of the most important resources and tools necessary to success, and you’re likely to hear a few items named over and over.

Ask any manager to name some of the most important resources and tools necessary to success, and you’re likely to hear a few items named over and over. Most important resource? The answer may be people; human resources are important in any finishing operation. Most important tool? The answer may be data. Industry intelligence is essential to success.

Identifying and hiring good workers can be challenging, but once you’ve recruited them, it’s important to retain them. Motivation and loyalty may be necessary aspects, but compensation is still at the core. A successful team relies on fair and equitable wages and fringe benefits; a successful coach likes a level playing field.

That’s why the Aluminum Anodizers Council conducts a periodic Wage & Fringe Benefit Survey. Compensation packages change over time. The Council conducted its most recent Wage & Fringe Benefit Survey late in 2003, it having been a little more than two years since the Council had issued such a survey. You may recall how different the employment situation was during the spring of 2001; it was actually hard to find new workers. The economic situation has changed markedly since that time, having first trended further downward and then to move toward recovery. If you’re now hiring once again, as many finishers are, the data in the current survey report could prove useful to you.

AAC’s Wage & Fringe Benefit Survey Report details overtime premiums, shift premiums, paid holidays and a variety of other fringe benefits, along with the average costs associated with such benefits. Average U.S. wages for a dozen positions also are reported. That’s the kind of industry intelligence you can’t get just anywhere.

Survey responses, which are held in strict confidence, come from a cross-section of United States and Canadian anodizers. An independent certified public accounting firm collects and compiles the data. The final report is made available at no charge to participating AAC members. Other interested parties may obtain the report for a fee. For more information or to order a copy, please contact the Council at

To establish a benchmark of best practices, managers need industry intelligence. Ideally, the data ought to be not only current, but also clearly relevant. The Council’s data on wages and fringe benefits are up to date and specific to aluminum anodizing.


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