Distributor-Manufacturer Business Management Team Surveys

The following summarizes responses from the surveys of design engineers and distributors, conducted by the NFPA with the help of Penton Media, Inc.

Number of responses:

Design Engineer Survey -- 75 to 83 respondents for each individual question.
Sent to readers of Hydraulics & Pneumatics, Machine Design and Motion System Design.

Distributor Survey -- 83 to 92 respondents for each individual question.
Sent to readers of Motion System Distributor.


Design Engineer Survey

1) Role in product specification and purchasingÂ…most important part of role.

Hydraulic (56)

1. Develop design solutions 39%
2. Determine needs and requirements 27%
3. Approve design solution/specification 14%
4. Specify component/system 13%
5. All others 7%

Pneumatic (42)

1. Develop design solutions 38%
2. Determine needs and requirements 21%
3. Specify component/system 19%
4. Approve design solution/specification 14%
5. All others 10%

Hydraulic and Pneumatic (46)

1. Develop design solutions 30%
2. Determine needs and requirements 22%
3. Approve design solution/specification 22%
4. Specify component/system 15%
5. All others 11%

Specifying Components or Systems

Very Important

Important or Very Important

Product quality

68%

93%

Engineering service/support before sale

37

84

After the sale service

44

73

Pricing

38

73

Local distributor support/availability

32

67

Delivery/electronic order

23

48

Multiple components from one manufacturer

15

51

Pricing and Terms

Very Important

Important or Very Important

Warranties

20%

57%

Low price

16

53

All components from one manufacturer

17

44

Price freeze/rollbacks

14

33

Extended payment terms

12

33

Freight/logistics

6

32

Global pricing

8

23

Rebates

10

16

Company Purchasing Decisions

Very Important

Important or Very Important

Tech competence of supplier

64%

92

Past relationships/loyalty

24

84

Role of local distributor

22

58

Low price

21

52

Manufacturer selling direct

19

39

Value added distributor selling

15

56

Catalog sales

15

42

Integrated supply

13

32

Need for suppliers of value added services

10

51

Role of national distributors

8

36

Internet purchasing

8

24

Manufacturer consolidation

1

26

Live Internet auctions

3

3

Areas of largest change for the future state

As you can see, with several exceptions, the expected change was not dramatic, even for those questions with the largest changes noted.

Specifying Components or Systems

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Engineering service/support before the sale

46%

84%

43%

71%

Delivery service/electronic ordering

23

49

19

57

Pricing

39

73

38

67

Multiple components from one manufacturer

15

50

16

45

Pricing and Terms

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Warranties

19%

58%

22%

65%

Global pricing agreements

7

22

13

29

National pricing agreements

10

22

12

29

Lowest price wins business

16

52

17

47

Company Purchasing Decision

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Internet purchasing

8%

24%

15%

47%

Manufacturer direct selling

20

39

20

46

Value-added distributor selling

15

56

20

58


Distributor Survey

Buying Decision (OEM)

Buying Decision (MRO)

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Product quality

63%

90%

Product quality

63%

92%

Pricing

56

85

Local distributor support/availability of product/component

51

87

Engineering service/support before sale

47

82

After the sale service

49

80

After the sale service

38

67

Pricing

39

69

Multiple components from one manufacturer

23

64

Engineering service/support before sale

40

60

Local distributor support/availability of product/component

33

62

Multiple components from one manufacturer

22

56

Delivery service/electronic ordering

17

41

Delivery service/electronic ordering

20

47

Pricing and Terms

Purchasing from Supplier

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Low price

20%

63%

Technical competency of supplier

48%

87%

Warranty

21

56

Past relationships/loyalty

34

84

Freight/logistic cost

13

47

Value-added distributor selling

29

75

National pricing

14

41

Role of local distributor

29

73

All components from one manufacturer

13

41

Need for suppliers of value-added service

27

82

Extended payment terms

12

36

Vendor provides design solution

23

71

Price freeze/rollbacks

9

44

Low price

16

58

Rebates

9

33

Role of national distributors

17

46

Global pricing

7

24

Manufacturer direct selling

13

30

Consolidation of manufacturers

10

29

Integrated supply

6

31

Catalog sales

6

31

Consolidation of distributors

6

30

Internet purchasing

2

22

Areas of largest change for the future state

Buying Decision

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Delivery service/electronic ordering (OEM)

17%

41%

27%

79%

Multiple components from single manufacturer (OEM)

23

64

37

68

Product quality (OEM)

63

90

75

95

Engineering service/support before the sale (OEM)

47

82

54

89

Delivery service/electronic ordering (OEM)

20

47

38

80

Multiple components from single manufacturer (OEM)

22

56

37

67

Engineering service/support before the sale (OEM)

40

60

44

70

Pricing and Terms

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Freight/logistics

13%

47%

24%

64%

National pricing

14

40

25

47

Global pricing

7

24

12

33

All components from one manufacturer

13

41

20

58

Purchasing from Supplier

Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Need for suppliers of value-added services

27%

82%

43%

89%

Internet purchasing

2

22

21

62

Value-added distributor selling

29

75

44

85

Vendor already provides design solutions

23

71

33

81

Technical competency of supplier

48

87

67

98


Competing Technologies

Design Engineer and Distributor Surveys -- How important is each of the following to your product line(s) today, and how important will they be in 3 years?

Design Engineers Distributors
Current 3 Years from Now Current 3 Years from Now

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Very important

Important or very important

Hydraulic

16%

55%

22%

55%

20%

58%

32%

67%

Pneumatic

21

54

22

54

20

64

30

71

Electrohydraulic

13

49

31

62

17

52

24

73

Electropneumatic

11

36

18

50

16

44

24

69

Electrical

36

68

48

74

27

74

41

86

Electromechanical

28

52

36

70

20

62

35

77