Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

Dec 10, 2020

Carol McGloganBy Carol McGlogan

The pandemic has given us reason to pause and evaluate everything we do. We have all been affected in our personal and professional lives, and it is during these times we realize family and community come first.

We know that EFC’s role is to bring the electrical industry closer together – and this pandemic has proven that there is no better time to come together.

In an effort to help members continually navigate market conditions, we regularly monitored the pulse of our industry through weekly surveys on supply and demand. Current results from this survey can be found online at EFC’s COVID-19 webpage, which also features best practices for business re-openings, employee support, and industry news on pandemic responses.

From the onset of this pandemic, EFC also raised the voice of the electrical industry by reaching out to every premier across Canada to advocate that our industry must be classified as an essential service. To amplify our impact, we joined 60 other associations in asking the federal government to step in with financial relief for industry members.

Our Board of Directors then took swift action to protect the safety of our members by moving, and then cancelling, our annual conference. Our meetings and events took on a fully virtual experience and our community underscored the importance of EFC’s membership through robust participation at all EFC meetings and virtual events.

Business insights through virtual experiences

EFC also examined what other programs we could provide to help members during this very difficult time. We immediately pivoted our education series to a free webinar format, focusing on topics that are most relevant to members, such as

• strategies for managing the workforce during COVID-19

• a two-part Economic Forecast series with special economist Maureen Farrow

• a leadership webinar by renowned speaker and author, Ron Tite, on how to navigate business from chaos to composure

• an EFC research webinar with PWC on securing talent for an emerging workforce

Our Future Forum virtual event challenged businesses on “Rethinking the Customer Experience” and our virtual Supply Chain conference, “Digital Pivot,” focused on how organizations can pivot their supply chains towards a digitized, automated enterprise to reach new service levels and lower costs. The “Rep of the Future” webinar provided insights on emerging requirements for sales organizations and how each member within the channel must evolve to thrive. And our “Electrical Playbook” training module gained traction as an important resource for onboarding and employee development programs.

Strategic partnerships

We also aligned with key partners to strengthen the leverage EFC and our members have within other relevant communities. A new agreement with Standards Council of Canada outlines a workplan to promote participation in standardization strategies to foster competitiveness for Canada’s electrical manufacturing industry. To improve cybersecurity and competitiveness, our partnership with the CIO Strategy Council provides members with a platform to discuss issues of cybersecurity standardization and the security of digitized operations and supply chains. We also have a renewed workplan with IDEA to promote data synchronization within the industry as IDEA has expanded their content capabilities in French and English and have made the expanded content available at no extra charge.

EFC networks

As all these programs, partnerships and activities unfolded, it was still “business as usual” for EFC. Member participation in our business sections and network meetings were robust. EFC worked hard to provide value for all disciplines within our members’ workforce through our many networks: HR, Supply Chain, Marketing, Young Professionals and the newly formed Women’s Network. Our goal is to ensure that all members of the EFC community have a place to build industry relationships, gain knowledge and share best practices.

I have learned that through this pandemic, EFC has become more important than ever. Together, we have raised the voice of the industry, found community through our networks and business sections, and provided intelligence through our statistics and research programs, pulse surveys and webinar series.

We would like to thank all our members for their support of EFC and the electrical community. We proved that we are stronger together and our ability to adapt is admirable. We are confident we will see everyone again, in-person, in 2021.

Carol McGlogan is President & CEO, Electro-Federation Canada.

Pandemic StudyThe year 2020 was filled with surprises. One of them was business solvency.

Insolvencies were down by almost one-third year over year during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and were relatively stable in the third quarter. At the height of this century’s previous economic shocks, insolvencies rose by 10% or more. A new study looks at insolvencies during the largest economic upheaval of our lifetime.

 

 

 

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Douglas BaldwinBy John Kerr

My father asked me to lunch one day and told me he wanted very much to meet with someone in the electrical industry who meant a lot to him, and whose friendship he wanted to share with me. This lunch, in 1982, was with Doug Baldwin.

As lunch progressed, I discovered these men shared many bonds after having met years before in Winnipeg. Doug was with Federal Pioneer at that time, my father with Triangle Conduit & Cable. It seems they hit it off and my father’s wry sense of humour was trumped only by Doug’s. 

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Wholesale Sales - November 2020Wholesale sales grew for the seventh consecutive month in November — up 0.7% to an all-time high of $67.4 billion. Five of seven subsectors reported stronger sales, led by the machinery, equipment and supplies subsector and the building material and supplies subsector. Notably, the increase reflects higher domestic sales of Canadian goods, as both imports and exports of key commodities fell in November.

Wholesale trade volumes increased 0.9% in November.

 

 

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Sean BernardBy Sean Bernard

Last year was like none other and one that we all hope never to endure again. The impact on our personal and professional lives has been dramatic, simultaneously universal and unique to each of us.

We have all heard about and experienced the heartache of not spending time with and not celebrating milestones with our extended families, not being able to take those planned vacations, and having to deal with the stresses and challenges of virtual learning with our kids.

 

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Changing Scene

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Martin Stephenson Signify Canada has announced David Grinstead, Market Leader, Canada, Signify will retire at the end of the month. "We thank David for his contributions, passion and dedication to the company and industry," said the company via press release.

Martin Stephenson will take on the Market Leader, Canada role in addition to his current position as Head of North American Systems & Services at Signify. He reports to Kevin Poyck, Market Group Leader, Americas.

 

 

 

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Greg StephensonBartle & Gibson has announced that Greg Stephenson has officially joined the Electrical Supply Division (ESD) of the AD Canada Electrical Divisional Board effective January 4th, 2021.

Greg is the Senior Vice President Electrical at Bartle & Gibson, based in Edmonton, Alberta. He is now entering his 27th year in the Electrical Industry and he originally began his career working for another proud AD Member, McLoughlan Supplies Ltd in St, John’s NL. During his career, Greg has also worked for many key suppliers such as, Eaton, Thomas & Betts and Siemens.

 

 

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Peers & Profiles

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Ariane CardinalBy Blake Marchand

Ariane Cardinal is Director of Planning, Purchasing, and Distribution with Stelpro. Ariane owns a bachelor’s degree in Engineering, although she said, “I always knew, when I was doing engineering, that I wanted to have a career more oriented towards management.”

After earning her degree, she did an internship with a company in the gas industry based out of Paris, France, which is where she was introduced to supply chain management. Ariane noted she was interested in the problem-solving aspects of supply chain, which meshed well with her engineering background. 

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