Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society 2011/2012 Executive Committee
PRESIDENT Bryan Beck
VICE PRESIDENT Bill Mehlenbeck Cast Technologies Inc.
TREASURER Bill Surman
I. Schumann & Co.
DIRECTOR R. J. Kuhn
DIRECTOR Steve Horvath Brost Foundry Co.
HEADQUARTERS 1480 Renaissance Drive, #310 Park Ridge IL 60068 (847) 299-0950 firstname.lastname@example.org
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR/EDITOR James L. Mallory, CAE email@example.com
CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Jerrod A. Weaver, CAE Quality/Safety firstname.lastname@example.org
Ryan J. Moore, CAE Member Services email@example.com
LAYOUT & DESIGN Michael Barron
Barron Layout & Design firstname.lastname@example.org
The Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society has always felt that we have a pretty good handle on the concerns and issues facing members and the industry. And we’ve always believed that we do a fairly good job of helping foundries face the challenges of trying to run their foundry more efficiently and more profitably. Ten years ago, in a national membership satisfaction survey of ten national advocacy and industry service associations, the Society ranked #1 in responding to members’ issues and priorities and in effectiveness in helping member with their issues and priorities. But that was a decade ago. Times change, and so can opinions. So NFFS decided to ask again. In February, we sent members a new electronic Member Satisfaction Survey.
The ratings we received from the more than 40% of member foundries that responded to the survey were every bit as good. In fact, in some cases, the percentages even went up. Nearly 86% of the respondents rated the overall level of customer service as above average or excellent. You might think that doesn’t leave a lot of room for improvement, but there you would be wrong.
NFFS asked members to identify the top challenges facing their businesses, and while the answers they gave didn’t reveal any glaring gaps or weaknesses in the Society’s programs and services, they did cover a wide range of issues: increasing government regulations; finding and training workers; the cost of benefits and pensions; expanding production; automation; scrap rates, scrap supply and availability, scrap costs. Did we mention government regulations? We did? Well, members cited those more than once as well.
All of these issues present new opportunities for the Society to try to craft new programs and services to help its members. Some issues might take longer to address than others, and some are more challenging, but every one is an opportunity for the Society to step up and serve its members’ needs and concerns.
NFFS asked members to identify the most important benefit they expect to gain from their membership investment. Here are just a few of their actual responses.
• “Education, awareness of environmental and regulatory issues, networking, potential cost savings.”
• “Addressing management type issues – including regulatory issues and fiscal issues.”
• “Knowing that there are industry professionals that you can call or email, and they will help you out with industry specific questions or needs.”
• “Advice when I need it – regardless of the field.” • “Quick response to needs.” • “To have someplace to go when we need information we cannot find.”
Given the ratings NFFS programs and service received via this survey, current members apparently think we do these sorts of things pretty well. If your foundry isn’t already a NFFS member, why not join and see for yourself? Call the NFFS office today to learn about the immediate value membership can offer.
The CRUCIBLE is published six times each year in February, April, June, August, October and December by the Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society 1480 Renaissance Drive, Suite 310, Park Ridge, IL 60068 (847) 299-0950. Copyrighted 2012 by the Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society. All rights reserved. Statements of fact and opinion are made on the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily imply an opinion on the part of the officers or membership of the Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society.
March/April 2012 The Crucible • 1
A recent workshop on sales & customer service that we attended presented a couple of fairly important common sense ideas. The first was “Never presume you know what your customer really wants.” The second was a corollary to the first: “If you never ask, you’ll never know.”
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