Top Shops Survey Methodology and FAQ
Why should I benchmark my manufacturing business?
Benchmarking your manufacturing business is a way to see how different aspects of your operation – from quoting and profitability to training and HR practices – compare with other businesses. The Tops Shops Benchmarking Survey and Report is designed to show how you stack up both overall, and specifically relative to the businesses we classify as being “Top Shops.” Participating in the Top Shops Benchmarking Survey earns your company a customized report plotting where your shop falls on individual measures. You receive a Performance Summary that lists areas of relative strengths, areas your business is on track, and opportunities for improvement. Consistent benchmarking can demonstrate your shop’s improvement over time, and provide data that can be used in your sales and marketing strategy or to aid your management team in yearly goal setting. Top Shops benchmarking has proven invaluable to companies committed to improvement and growth.
Who takes the Top Shops survey?
The Top Shops survey is emailed to large numbers of Gardner Business Media subscribers (readers of brands like Modern Machine Shop, Composites World, Plastics Technology and Products Finishing) and posted to various Gardner digital media websites to gather broad survey participation.
When is the Top Shops survey conducted?
Field dates for Top Shops surveys vary across our media brands. All are conducted on an annual basis. Modern Machine Shop’s Top Shops Survey generally starts in January, Product Finishing’s Liquid & Powder Coat Top Shops Survey begins in May, Plastics Technology’s Top Show Survey in the Fall, and Products Finishing’s Plating Top Shops Survey is typically conducted in December.
How is the Top Shops Benchmarking study reported?
A high level, one-page executive summary is broadly available and can be accessed here. In addition, survey participants receive a free custom report in return for their effort. Participants can also purchase additional custom reports, which can be accessed here.
How do I get a Top Shops report?
While the most comprehensive and actionable Top Shops data are provided to participating companies via custom reports, there is also the option to purchase a Benchmarking Standards Report. The Benchmarking Standards Report is a custom report populated by a ‘statistically typical’ shop which is compared to the same benchmarks as a participating shop. “Your shop” in the report is equivalent to a shop providing the median answer for every question in the survey. The useful perspective provided by the BSR is not available elsewhere and provides a baseline for determining what is important to a successful shop. The Benchmarking Standards Report is available for purchase here.