Free industry benchmarking

PIAA is offering its members free business financial benchmarking, which allows businesses to track their performance, following a successful pilot of the service as part of the Future Print Business Transformation Program.

The service, which usually costs $575 but is free to PIAA members, is now open for the entry of 2014/2015 data and underwritten by Media Super for an unlimited number of businesses for two years.

PIAA general manager of member services Peter Mansfield says it allows businesses to immediately see where they are doing well, while also identifying areas where their performance could be improved.

“For instance, business owners can find out how much they are really earning for their time, effort and risk, and how that compares with others in the industry and more broadly,” he says.

“You can identify how much income you are bringing into the business per employee, and see how your overheads and personnel ratios compare with other companies.”

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He says businesses across the country have entered their 2013/14 financial year data into the specially configured industry benchmarking tool on www.benchmarking.com.au as part of their involvement in the Future Print program, and have received their free report on the comparative performance of their business.

Mansfield says the reports contain a range of vital and valuable data, comparing their performance against industry averages across categories including:

• Income, gross and net profit
• Financial ratios
• Overhead ratios
• Personnel ratios

“For many who have already received their report, it has delivered peace of mind that they are on the right track. For some, it is confirmed the value of their business both as a viable ongoing concern and, in some cases, as a saleable asset,” he says.

“For others, the ability to recognise areas that need attention has helped them identify the training, resources and investment that are needed to better equip their businesses for a successful future.”

He says business owners have also been able to compare their own performance against like-sized turnover businesses in the industry; capital city versus regional operations; as well as against the wider industry and the general market, to get a clear overview of how they are tracking.

Through Future Print, 96 companies have already participated in the benchmarking process, providing benchmarking.com with a statistically valuable critical mass, which has enabled them to evaluate the responses and release some initial summary data.

Mansfield says: “This data not only provides a snapshot of industry performance, but continues to provide vital collective data for industry planning as we move forward. The more businesses become involved, the more accurate and valuable the broader data becomes.

“On an individual level, our experience so far has proven beyond doubt that this benchmarking tool can really assist businesses to get a clearer picture of how they are performing, so that they can maximise opportunities and build greater success for the future.

“With Media Super’s support, there has never been a better time to access this valuable information, so I would encourage all industry businesses to take advantage of this offer.”

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