Market Watch

Market Watch


Industry’s First Sales Compensation Survey Report Released by SGIA

The first comprehensive examination and analysis of compensation data for sales personnel in the U.S. and Canadian screen printing and graphic imaging industry has been completed by the Screenprinting and Graphic Imaging Association International (SGIA).

SGIA’s Sales Compensation Survey Report presents common policies and practices found in the screen printing and graphic imaging industries. The data provides an excellent model for comparing sales policies and benefits with other industry companies, according to SGIA. This report includes information for printing companies only. A separate report is available with sales compensation data for industry manufacturers and distributors.

“Providing adequate compensation and benefits is critical to building an effective sales team,” said Al Anderson, SGIA’s vice president for education and management services, whose department undertook the study. “This report provides interesting and valuable insights into many of the key elements necessary for providing adequate support and compensation for industry sales personnel.”

Data in the survey represents approximately 623 sales representatives in the U.S. and 122 from Canada. Findings are broken down by the industry’s major production specialties: binders and ad specialties, ceramics and flat glass, compact discs, containers and 3-D objects, decals and labels, fine art and serigraphs, fleet marking, garments and textiles, nameplates/dials/faceplates, outdoor signs and billboards, POP/posters/displays, circuits and electronic components and membrane switch and touch panels.

From company president to independent sales representatives, SGIA’s survey also reports compensation details for several levels of sales employees.

Average amount paid is broken down by orders sold, salary, commissions, bonuses and total compensation.

Among the survey’s salient findings:

• By product specialty, the greatest number of full- and part-time sales staff are reported in POP/posters and displays, followed by decals and labels, and then textiles for the U.S. For Canadian sales staff, however, the binders and ad specialties market is the largest segment, followed by POP/posters and displays and then decal and label producers.
• Preferred compensation method for U.S. sales staff is salary plus commission; in Canada, commissions-only appears to be the preferred compensation method.
• Weekly draw on commission sales averages $746 in the U.S. and $720 in Canada.
• In the U.S., commissions tend to be paid to sales staff after customers have paid their invoices. In Canada, however, commissions tend to be paid when orders are billed.
• Printing companies in both the U.S. and Canada prefer to use gross sales as their basis for calculating sales compensation.
• By a factor of nearly two to one, printing companies in both the U.S. and Canada prefer to have their orders quoted by an in-house estimating group, but presented by professional sales staff.

Obviously, this thumbnail sketch offers only a cursory overview of certain findings. Further details and broader implications must be taken into account and understood within the context of the complete survey report.

While the information provided in this survey represents “a good basis for future reports, with little or no previously collected data for comparison, it is difficult to say how well it represents industry norms,” said Mr. Anderson. “We strongly urge use of this information only as a guide.”

Print Sales Show Slight Increase

The Printing Industries of America’s (PIA) June Monthly Print Market Survey, sponsored by Heidelberg, reported total May 2002 sales up just under 1 percent from May 2001.

Monthly print sales continued to climb from the previous month. According to the survey, May 2002 sales were up an average of 2.6 percent from April 2002 levels.

“For the first time since last summer, total monthly printing sales increased from year-earlier levels,” said Ron Davis, Ph.D., chief economist for PIA.” Although the up-tick is slight, this represents a significant turnaround in print markets. While there is growth, it is important to note that this month’s numbers are being compared to May of last year, and in 2001the printing industry suffered severely depressed sales.”

According to the survey, almost half of the survey respondents (48.6 percent) reported their sales were up from a year ago, while 45 percent reported declining sales compared to last May. On a monthly basis, almost six out of 10 respondents cited increased sales while 35.8 percent reported sales declines.