Latest Articles

  • With the recent passage of SB 2499 (“Medicare, Medicaid, and SCHIP Extension Act of 2009”), all businesses with exposure to tort claims–including personal injury claims–need to be keenly aware of Medicare’s reimbursement rights. Medicare’s reimbursement rules are changing, and businesses should consider modifying their liability and settlement strategies.... more »
  • For better or worse, the headlines in today's WDweekly present a real snapshot of the today's economic landscape. Read just about any forecast or outlook today, and it will likely include a mix of optimistic signals that the worst is over, but also cautionary notes that the struggles will continue for some time before the economy can truly be considered healthy. Among this week's stories, I was... more »
  • Residential product shipments expected to decline once again in 2009, with gradual upturn beginning in 2010
    Continuing on the downward trend that started in 2006, window sales are expected to drop another 23 percent this year, according to a new report from the American Architectural Manufacturers Association and the Window & Door Manufacturers Association. Although stimulus programs on both the new construction and remodeling/replacement side may have an impact, the latest study... more »
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    Looking to push the envelope on performance, a committed CEO has emerged as the new face of the industry
     Two years ago, not many people in the industry had even heard the name Serious Materials. Today, everybody’s talking about the company. Even President Barack Obama. Kevin Surace, CEO of Serious Materials, doesn't view his company as competing on the window and door demand curve—he sees it moving with the green building curve. Earlier this year, workers at the former... more »
  • While I wish I were talking about the "L" word "love," I'm actually talking about the "L" word "layoffs." Friday was a tough day for me with regards to the "L" word. Two industry buddies touched base with me to let me know they were let go that very day. No sooner had I gotten off the phone with one than I got an email from another letting me know... more »
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    Big investments are few, but companies are adapting to stringent performance criteria in the market, and thinking about even stronger requirements on the horizon
    Following a period of little investment in new plants and production lines, window and door manufacturers are beginning to look again. Some see signs that sales are creeping up, but the primary driver is the need to upgrade window and door lines to meet new, more stringent performance criteria, including the new 30/30 minimums set for new tax credits, revised Energy Star criteria set to go in... more »
  • In 1985, a young window salesman was sent to Columbus, Ohio, to negotiate a contract of $275,000. His supervisor had commanded that young salesman to come back with the order and allowed, if necessary, that the salesman had the latitude to adjust the price by as much as $25,000. The very inexperienced young salesman walked into the office and met an intimidating purchaser who quickly exerted... more »
  • When the economy turns and the tide of red ink finally ebbs, the predominant color in a resurgent construction and remodeling market is very likely to be green. On the commercial side, the U.S. green building market is accelerating at a dramatic rate, says McGraw-Hill Construction’s Green Outlook 2009: Trends Driving Change report, released last November at the Greenbuild Conference. The... more »
  • The 2009 edition of the International Codes is now available. The debut of a new edition of the I-codes usually sparks a flurry of questions about content and enforcement. It is timely therefore to devote this column to the most frequently asked questions and their answers: Is the 2008 edition of AAMA/WDMA/CSA 101/I.S.2/A440 referenced in the 2009 I-codes?Yes. When the phrase “I-codes... more »
  • Move to JIT manufacturing can shift costs elsewhere without an integrated strategy
    Today, many window and door manufacturers find themselves in survival mode. To combat a decrease in demand, some are frantically trying to increase their sales, while others are searching for ways to augment profitability. The most successful companies are not looking to boost sales alone, they are also investing in proven cost cutting methods. Reducing overhead is an obvious path toward... more »