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First things are first, as we start with a Business Analysis. During that analysis we take a 360-degree view of your business comparing your financial and operating performance to the most comprehensive set of data in the industry. We work with managers and owners to understand the desired state of the company and the gap between where it is now and where it wants to be. We then help you develop a detailed plan of what needs to be done, who is going to do it, and how long it will take. After that, it’s very simple; we provide tools, structure, and proven methodologies to achieve a new level of business as usual.

Our service delivery is an intensive hands-on experience that produces long-term results. Our methodology requires only your commitment, hard work, and a willingness to change. We want you to be successful. Our team works at the unit or corporate level, or through the use of webinars, with owners and the management team to bring about change to the organization in a reasonably short period of time.

Our team splits up the day’s onsite visit to allow for a smooth transfer of knowledge throughout the organization. At the end of each visit, homework or a set of tasks/initiatives are given to be completed prior to our next visit. What happens between visits and the percentage of tasks completed will define the success of the project. At each return visit the tasks will be reviewed for completion prior to the addition of new initiatives.

We take ownership of these projects and demand that the management team does the same. We push the team to new limits as we strive to reduce inefficiencies by holding everyone accountable for task completion each and every visit!

WE WORK IN 360 DEGREES. The whole package—sales and merchandise management, plus organization design and compensation, plus strategic planning, financial analysis and planning, as well as recruiting and sales training.

 
Benchmarkinc

WHAT MAKES US
DIFFERENT
FROM THE OTHER GUYS

Consulting

  • TAUGHT BY INDUSTRY EXPERTS.

    WHO HAVE HELD EVERY POSITION THE INDUSTRY.

  • BACKED BY EXPERIENCES LEARNED.

    FROM ASSISTING MORE THAN 1,500 CLIENTS.

  • WE PROVIDE TOOLS.

    FOR EVERYTHING WE TEACH.

  • WE TEACH CLIENTS HOW TO BE SELF-SUFFICIENT.

    AND LESS RELIANT ON US LONG-TERM.

  • METHODOLOGIES WERE CONSTRUCTED.

    BY GATHERING INPUT FROM WHAT CLIENTS REALLY NEED.

  • WE SPEAK YOUR LANGUAGE.

    WE TAKE THE DIFFICULT SCIENCE BEHIND RUNNING A SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS AND PUT IT INTO SIMPLE TERMS THAT OUR CLIENTS CAN UNDERSTAND AND IMPLEMENT.

  • WE ADDRESS GAPS IN ALL FACETS OF THE BUSINESS.

    SO THE OWNER CAN FOCUS ON OWNING THE BUSINESS AND NOT A JOB.

WE WORK IN 360 DEGREES. The whole package—sales and merchandise management, plus organization design and compensation, plus strategic planning, financial analysis and planning, as well as recruiting and sales training.

Financial Management

The consulting team offers a unique set of solutions designed to provide clients with a method for measuring and controlling the financial performance of their company by implementing the following services:

  • Forward-looking Budgets
  • Operational Dashboards
  • Variance Reports
  • Breakeven Analysis
  • Financial Reviews
  • Investment Analysis
  • Sensitivity Analysis

Merchandise Management

Benchmarkinc’s merchandising efforts serve to maximize margins and sales efforts, and to minimize merchandise expenses such as inventory carrying costs and shrink.

  • Margin Maximization
  • Optimal Inventory Level
  • Open-to-Buy Process (OTB)
  • Obsolescence Plan
  • Inventory Analysis
  • Innovative Pricing Strategies
  • Sales by Price Point
  • Special Order vs. Stocked Merchandise Performance

Organizational Management

Benchmarkinc’s organizational development efforts are designed to strongly motivate employees by creating a sense of accomplishment and responsibility, recognition, accountability, and the platform for measuring and communicating performance levels. Our team sets up systems and processes giving employees a clear understanding of their responsibilities, how their job functions should be performed, and effective compensation to drive that performance.

  • Organizational Structure Planning/Design
  • Optimal Staffing Levels
  • Job Descriptions/Definitions
  • Job Balancing
  • Performance Based Compensation Plans
  • Transition Planning
  • Appraisal Process
  • Management Meeting Process
  • Compensation Comparison by Position

Sales Management

Our sales management program is designed to drive sales growth by setting up processes to manage a customer-driven team and monitor the correct attributes that drive that growth; average sale and close rates. Other factors contributing to the success of the system are examined such as: goal setting, observations, performance standards, and training programs.

  • Goal Setting
  • Performance Tracking System (Traffic, close rates, average transaction)
  • Performance Standards
  • Professional Selling System
  • Sales Training Plans
  • Observation and Coaching
  • UPs System
  • Needs Analysis/Qualifying Form
  • Driving Outside Business

Business Development

Our team has developed EXTREMELY EFFECTIVE methods to drive business without breaking the bank! Our approach is bit out of the box as we combine a bit of traditional advertising, feet on the street tactics, ways to leverage your previous and current customer base, as well as an online presence.

  • Advertising Budgets
  • Hunter Program
  • Traditional Advertising Strategies
  • In-store Strategies

Process Improvement

Benchmarkinc Consultants conduct a process improvement workshop with owners and key management personnel to examine inefficiencies in the current process within the organization. Various areas of the business are examined such as: receiving, sales processes, claims, install/delivery, accounts payable, accounts receivable, and job costing. Once deficiencies are identified, a plan is put into place to correct the process and create a more efficient and effective system.

Performance Metrics

Benchmarkinc has created proprietary performance tracking systems to assist managers in guiding performance. A majority of our dashboards are linked to company operating systems that allow for an instantaneous upload of data to view the many performance facets of the business. A sampling of our dashboards include written vs. delivered sales, turn rates and GMROI, top sellers by category, sales and gross margin by category, sales by category by sales associate, and many more.

  • Michael Haynes

    “Benchmarkinc has helped me overcome so many obstacles over the past few years. I have to say that without their help I am not sure I would still be in the flooring industry. They worked with me as if they were a part of my team and refused to leave until they were 110% satisfied with their work and the real improvements were realized. They handed me the tools and created systems that has made both my company and I more successful. I highly recommend Benchmarkinc to any other business and I am so glad to know they are here to help us with whatever challenges we may face in the future.”

    Michael Haynes Testimonial x2:

    Benchmarkinc has helped me with so many obstacles over the past few years. They worked with me as if they were a part of my team and refused to leave until they were 110% satisfied with their work. They handed me the tools to become more successful. I highly recommend Benchmarkinc to any other business; they will be the first people I call if I ever need them again!

    - Michael Haynes
    Cinderella Showcase, Salinas, CA

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    “Benchmarkinc has been instrumental in helping My Flooring America increase our bottom line profit in 2009. The ideas, tools and help with implementation they provided allowed us to make some needed changes with confidence. The matter of fact approach and ability to demonstrate the benefits to my management team and myself energized us as we put new systems in place. Working with Benchmarkinc has definitely been a beneficial and profitable experience.”

    - Scott Steel
    My Flooring America

  • Maxine Schneider

    “We had David come out and speak with our Neighborhood Network about a number of difficult issues our stores were facing. He gave us good, sound advice, and always had an answer to every question. He was very willing to share with us the methods he uses to run his flooring store. That is what is so good about working with him. He has proven his ideas and processes by implementing them in his own store. Another area that David has helped us with is in setting a budget. We were able to project our sales and expense numbers for the next year using real data. This proved to be very useful in setting goals for our sales people. The best part of our relationship with David is that I can pick up the phone and call him. I know I will get no-nonsense, practical advice.”

    - Maxine Schneider
    Schneider's Flooring America

  • Paul F. Johnson

    “I have had the good fortune to attend a number of seminars that David Romano has lead. They have ranged from “Best Practices” to very specific financial training seminars. Three years ago we worked with David developing a plan to purchase a local retailer that wanted to sell his business. So this past year with the positive growth our company has experienced, we called on David Romano to assist us in the re-structuring of our company. It is rare to find an individual with financial acumen along with a great understanding and feel for the Retail Floor Covering Industry. David is a tremendous asset for our Industry. I would highly recommend David Romano to any Retailer that truly desires improved business practices.”

    - Paul F. Johnson
    Carpet One Floor and Home

  • Henry T. Scott

    “I first met David in the spring of 2003 when he visited our store. I was immediately impressed with his willingness to work with me. Since the beginning, he had an immediate impact on our company financially.

    He created some tools to help guide us. One such tool, his P & L and budget-spread sheet in excel format, helps my wife and I in making good sound business decisions. It allows us to set financial goals and budgets. He taught me about processes and how they can positively affect the outcome of your company goals. Although I am far from implementing everything that I have learned from David, his ideas have become my compass for future growth and success. As a company, we grew by 28% in sales volume in 2007. I assure you that could never have been attained without the implementation of those processes that I learned from David.

    In closing, I would highly recommend David and his staff to anyone willing to improve their business for the better. David makes it easier for you to manage your business which in turn allows you more opportunity to spend your time with your family and friends and that’s my goal.”

    - Henry T. Scott
    Carpet One by Henry

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    “It was one of the most organized and clearly laid out seminars that I have attended. It did not feel like a time waster; it was a great use of my time and worth the traveling time.

    We implemented the Ups cups and the rules that go along with it shortly after we returned to the office. It seems to be working well with our sales team, and it was great that the general rules and guidelines were already laid out for us to use. We meet with our sales people to get their input on it. The process and procedure was set which is what we needed, since retail is still new to us and we were handling it similarly to our builder customers, process and procedures, and ideas.”

    - Laura Modica
    Ambassador Floors

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    “The Benchmarkinc team has been a remarkable and much-needed resource for my business and me during the last 6 years; critically so during the past several years as my company sought to overcome extreme financial challenges.  The team analyzed every employee and every component of my business and in short order developed a comprehensive and detailed plan to take our company from the abyss to financial stability and success.  They stayed with us and guided us as we made many tough but needed decisions.  The team forced every member of our company to become accountable for every action and inaction.  As a result, today everyone in our company has a positive attitude, and together we are focused on achieving the goals we have set for ourselves.”  

    - Scott K. Walker
    Walkers Carpet One Floor & Home

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    “David Romano has a real gift to share and we were fortunate enough to reap the benefits.  His expertise and no-nonsense approach to business management has helped us begin a new journey after 54 years in business.  He offers tools to manage daily challenges, structure to monitor performance and models to plan for the future.  My favorite technique is the” bottom up goal setting for sales associates”.  It is a brilliant path to a win-win relationship between management and sales.  We strongly recommend his services.”

    - Steve Davis
    Modern Tile Flooring America 

  • Lynn Biviano

    “Before we began working with Benchmarkinc there were many things we needed. To begin with, we were in need of timely and accurate financial reports. We also needed to establish a clear path for the year both in budget and sales goals, to create an equitable compensation program for sales associates, to create a sales system to improve our gross margin, increase sales, and an improved UPS system. We also struggled with warehouse/inventory issues including monthly cycle counting. 

    They provided us with software, sales and administrative programs and in-house training. They established a budget and dashboards for advertising, insurance program, etc. In addition, with their oversight, we established yearly sales goals, programs to achieve those sales goals, and a fair commission structure with bonuses for our sales staff. The service we value the most is the one on one contact giving us advice that is specific to our needs and not a cookie cutter one size fits all approach.

    Today, after working with Benchmarkinc, our sales staff is motivated by bonuses and commission structures in order to improve their sales. Our gross margins have reached our desired target. We have implemented programs that reach out to new and existing customers in new ways. We have improved sales techniques including bundled pricing which makes the actual sale to customers easier. We can make financial adjustments as needed and not just in hindsight. Thanks to Benchmarkinc services we have increased our profitability and become more in control of where we are going and how effectively we are getting there. It has been an invaluable resource to our company.”

    - Lynn Biviano
    Biviano Carpet One Floor and Home

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    “Our company has undergone new ownership, new management and new staffing in a years’ time. Benchmarkinc has continued throughout this major transformation to remain steadfast in providing sales training, operational tools, and processes for inventory control.  David Romano and his team have been extremely energetic and able to swiftly build and assimilate data for our company when needed for company restructuring of sales goals, commission structures or building of budgets. We are excited that with guidance and direction given by Benchmarkinc we are seeing an increase in our average sales ticket, our sales volume, and our gross margin! Benchmarkinc has been invaluable during this very intense year of transformation for our company! We now are on track going the right direction with clarity and profitably!”

    - Dan Biles
    Dicks Carpet One Floor & Home

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    “Our challenge was not knowing how to take our business to the next level. The Benchmarkinc identified areas that needed improvement, told us what we needed to do, and gave us the tools to accomplish our goals and mission. One of the best investments I have made in the 28 years I have been in the flooring business.”

    - Pendergrass 
    Direct Carpet One Floor & Home

  • Todd Worlockt

    “I began working with Benchmarkinc a little over a year ago in preparation for our move to a new retail location. Having worked exclusively in new construction and insurance restoration, the task of implementing strategies, compensation plans and the management of both for retail sales appeared daunting. After one consultation with David and his staff, with more to follow, I quickly realized that I had all the resources available to make the transition. Benchmarkinc not only helped in establishing benchmarks for merchandising, labor, and the hiring of new staff, but most importantly, the implementation of each.

    I will continue to use their services as we move into our new location and believe that the services we received put us six to eight months ahead of where we would have been, had we worked on our own.”

    - Todd Worlock
    Floormax Flooring America

  • Lee Horwitz

    “David Romano's crew worked with us through the most unsure and dangerous time in our company's history. They were able to help us clarify problems, needed changes (in facilities, staff, and operations) and most importantly, the elements needed in bankruptcy court.

    It is no understatement to say that we would not be in business today without their direction, guidance, and ability to change their game plan based on discovered needs. We have seen the benefit of his company as they used many resources with different strengths to best fit with our particular situation. I truly invite anyone to call me to ask about what they have done for us!”

    - Lee Horwitz
    A&M Flooring America and Big Bob's Carpet

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    “As I’m sure you know, we’ve had many spirited discussions over the years regarding the health and direction of our business and the people who make up our wonderful staff. Although we didn’t always agree, we always respected each other and never lost sight of our end goal. We needed you at the time we started this journey…and for that, both Rich and I thank you.

    Some of our biggest struggles were how to propel ourselves to the next level. We were successful with our business at the volume it was doing and being a member of Carpet One was helpful…but we wanted to set the bar higher.

    Benchmarkinc helped by reviewing who we were, what we were, and who we wanted to become… then created an action plan just for us. As we moved forward, we implemented a recoverable draw commission program, created a sales manager position (one who did not sell…but coached or managed our sales staff), and set up a monitoring of store foot traffic thru daily traffic logs.

    We also scheduled yearly budget meetings and monthly reviews, set salesperson performance standards, set monthly performance goals for our sales staff, identified the top 10 best sellers in all categories throughout our store, and established monthly reviews of all dashboards and data.

    Because of the changes we have made, we know exactly where we are at any given time during a month. Most of the data input that is required takes a few minutes each day and a few hours at the end of a month. Fortunately, we now have over four years of numbers to use as our own benchmarks and sales history.

    The first year was the toughest and you (or your team) were in our store many hours each month. Your company became a part of our team. It wasn’t easy. But absolutely every penny we invested was returned to us in bottom line profits within 18 months. We now reap the benefits of this investment we made for the health of our company each and every year. We have a solid direction for the future. If we see a blip on the screen (like we have these past 16 months), we can act…react…and make corrections in days. This process alone used to take months and countless hours of stress because our numbers were never truly accurate. Today, those numbers are as close as they can be to exact.

    As it was explained to me at the very beginning of our engagement…it was like driving a car…except our company was attempting to drive forward by looking in the rear-view mirror. Once we removed the blinders from the front window, we could see clearly and had a road map to our future. Sure, it was like taking a drink of water out of a fire hydrant, but once our thirst was quenched we didn’t get quite as wet.

    We would be happy to speak with anyone regarding our experience with your company.

    Please do not hesitate to have them call either one of us.”

    - Jeff Norman
    Newport Carpet, Inc.

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    “I was first introduced to Benchmarkinc at a Flooring America Convention. The knowledge and expertise presented, particularly in the flooring industry, was quite impressive. My company was eager to tackle tough issues and make necessary changes to survive the economic environment, and thus began our business relationship.

    Mr. Romano has visited our location on several occasions exploring every aspect of the business. Previously our sales personnel were spending too much time measuring jobs and having difficulty ‘closing sales’. With his recommendations we’ve reallocated resources; someone is now assigned specifically to measuring while the sales staff is on the floor assisting customers. Every individual in our firm has become more accountable for day-to-day operations and aware of their specific responsibilities. Management has become proficient in understanding the accounting figures presented at month-end.

    Change is not easy. It has been a struggle. Mr. Romano and his staff are available at all times and consistently offer new ideas and recommendations based on our individual needs.”

    - Gwen M. Tennyson
    Griffin Flooring America