Latest Articles in Operations

  • The relationship between manufacturers and dealers is vitally important to both segments of our supply chain. A strong, healthy partnership can translate into a stronger business for both parties, leading to increased sales and an improved bottom line. Creating and maintaining that business partnership requires commitment from both sides. We want to hear insights on the topic from manufacturers... more »
  • Issues surrounding the labor market are among the top concerns for employers in the fenestration industry. The impact of the Great Recession, a workforce approaching retirement age, and a lack of job seekers in the fenestration and construction fields have each contributed to historic shortages in the labor pool. Employers must get creative about how to address labor issues and are utilizing... more »
  • The most probable opportunity for company owners looking to sell their business is a management buyout—a sale to senior managers or family. An MBO exit has a lot of flexibility and, if properly structured, can have significant tax advantages. In certain situations, the MBO will reap a better bottom line result than an outside sale because of the tax savings. Remember, it is not how much an... more »
  • Editor’s Note: Gene Marks will be a moderator and speaker at this year’s Window & Door Dealer Days, held September 12-13 in Atlanta. Marks will present the closing keynote address on growth and opportunities for business owners in 2018. Read more about the event here. Successful business owners are already thinking about next year. They are looking ahead, planning and... more »
  • I have already learned a great deal in my time with Window & Door magazine; along with the technical details of the fenestration business, I am getting to know the men and women who make up this industry. Make no mistake, while the stock in trade is entry and interior doors, windows, components and supplies, the heart of this business is the people. I have encountered a variety of companies... more »
  • Maximize Labor and Gain a Competitive Edge with Automation
    The residential window and door market is poised for real growth throughout 2017. As the housing market continues to regain health, and the Federal Reserve hiked its benchmark interest rate for the second time in 10 years, mortgage rates are on the rise. Market watchers also anticipate that the new presidential administration will be conducive to additional growth. For residential window... more »
  • Eight tips to contend the weather
    As I write this column from the comfort of my home, I occasionally glance out at the house under construction next door. The framers, bundled up from the fierce wind in hoodies and coveralls, brush snow off a stack of lumber. Just two days ago they were wearing shorts, enjoying the sunlight as they started in on the construction. Yet today they seem to march on, as always. The postman’s... more »
  • Like many specialty retailers, we have great relationships with several fine window manufacturers who care about their reputation and have taken steps support great products. Several are the most important partners we have in our business. Of course, we are always looking at options and are approached by companies who want our business. We take these opportunities to meet new folks, too, and... more »
  • Several weeks ago, I stumbled upon an old Window & Door article that questioned the end of independent distributors. The article was written in 2004 and our world has greatly changed in the last decade. E-commerce is booming. This gave me pause. Are distributorships on the way out?  Fortune recently reported statistics that indicate consumers are now making more than 51 percent of... more »
  • If you’re a typical dealer of windows and doors, you need a $1.5 million line of credit for every $10 million in business. Accordingly, if your revenues are $5 million, a $750,000 LOC is what’s required. This level of funding assures you’re not chronically cash hungry and have funds for early-pay discounts, inventory, strategic investments or even a recession. Finding a bank is... more »