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ASA Continues
to Provide Critical Value to its Members

The American Supply Association (ASA), the plumbing, heating, cooling, pipe and industrial/mechanical pipe, valves and fittings industry’s only national trade association, continues to provide its members the tools and resources needed to win now and into the future in an ever-changing and challenging business environment.

As we reach the near half point of 2024, ASA continues to roll out new programs, particularly on the employee education/training and workforce development fronts.

Master of Distribution Management Program

ASA University’s Master of Distribution Management (MDM) program underwent a transformative overhaul last in 2023, setting a new standard for leadership development in the distribution industry.

The MDM program, which has been growing industry leaders for over a decade, has always focused on contextualizing leadership within the distribution sector’s unique challenges. However, recognizing the need for continuous improvement, ASA University embarked on a mission to enhance the program further.

One of the most notable additions to the program is the “Essentials of Practical Leadership in Wholesale Distribution” publication. Authored by industry experts, this book covers core leadership skills essential for navigating the complexities of the distribution industry.

Flexibility has been another cornerstone of the program’s redesign. Recognizing the diverse needs of its members, ASA University now allows learners to customize their experience by electing supplemental training tailored to their specific requirements. This flexibility extends to the timeline as well, with the program now designed to be completed within a 12-month timeframe, reducing the burden on both students and their mentors.

The revamped MDM program also prioritizes peer-to-peer interactions, addressing the feedback from members who expressed a desire for greater community and networking opportunities. Moving away from individualized schedules, the program now operates on a cohort model, fostering collaboration and camaraderie among participants. Monthly virtual touchpoints allow students to discuss key topics from the Essentials book, share insights and engage with industry luminaries.

Speaking of mentors, the program has introduced a mentor orientation and revised resources to enhance their effectiveness in guiding students. One such resource, ASA’s Mentoring Handbook, is offered to mentors at no cost to ensure success with their students. Part of the role of mentor is guiding their student towards their Capstone Presentation, which challenges students to apply their newfound skills to real-life business problems, ensuring practical relevance.

For more information on the MDM program, contact ASA Vice President of Education and Training Taylor Albano at

Top 5 Ways ASA’s Free Recruiter Toolbox Can Take Your Recruitment to New Levels

The battle for talent continues across most business sectors and geographies. While not a new issue for the PHCP/PVF industry, the current U.S. unemployment rate continues to be at low levels not seen since 2020 and 1970 before that, compounding the challenge.

Given the intense competition for workers, firms must ensure they are using every tool possible to attract and retain talent. Best practices such as building a strong employer brand, providing a complete and easy-to-use careers website, employing a comprehensive social media strategy and engaging in online strategies such as search engine optimization and online job boards, among other traditional tactics are imperative.

ASA has recognized this issue and Project Talent, designed to attract workers to the industry and provide recruitment resources for members, is one of the association’s key strategic initiatives. As part of Project Talent, ASA created the Recruiter Toolbox for members.

The Recruiter Toolbox is an online repository containing a wide variety of assets that have been curated and are available to ASA members to augment their local talent recruitment. Recently, a new and improved Recruiter Toolbox was launched on

Here are five ways ASA members can enhance their recruiting using the Recruiter Toolbox:

Enhance your recruitment materials with industry-related stock photographs and illustrations. Nearly 2,000 images and illustrations are available and easily organized to find that perfect shot for a website, brochure or social media post. Members are also able to use the search function to find specific images such as “warehouse staff.”

Make sure internet search engines and job boards are seeing your job openings with pre-written job description templates. Twenty-eight pre-written industry job description templates using best practices to ensure the widest audience possible are available and can be customized for your company’s specific needs.

Promote your company’s current openings using pre-made digital and print customizable advertisements. Whether you’d like to advertise that your company is hiring online, in print publications, on billboards or even bus stops, ready-to-use and customizable files are available to easily create these ads.

Extend your recruitment messaging into social media with ready-to-go templates. The various social media channels have different requirements and specifications for posts. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter (X), Instagram or YouTube, templates are available in the Recruiter Toolbox.

Level-up your recruiting with additional sources and guidance. Other resources to enhance your local efforts are available such as tested recruiting messaging for the PHCP/PVF industry, a checklist to determine the effectiveness of your company’s career website, and recordings of several how-to webinars on various industry-related recruitment topics.

ASA aims to provide the most useful and user-friendly resources in the Recruiter Toolbox. Throughout the Toolbox website, there are opportunities to provide feedback on individual assets or for general comments.

ASA members can access the Recruiter Toolbox at or directly at Your ASA member login is required to get access to the Toolbox.

Project Talent is one of four mega goals included in the association’s strategic plan. This goal includes the objective of developing and implementing a program to attract and grow the number of talented workers taking advantage of fulfilling career opportunities in the PHCP/PVF industry.

ASA Continues Work on Uniform Product Data Standard

ASA’s Embracing the Future strategic action council continues its hard work on creating a uniform product data-sharing standard for the PHCP-PVF industry.

ASA Vice President of Innovation Beth Ladd reports the core working group continues to meet twice a month. Additionally, a need was identified to incorporate subgroups. Earlier this spring five subgroups were formed: a document review team, hot water, kitchen and bath, pumps, rough plumbing and valves.

The document review team also met twice to offer observations, thoughts and input to the proposed documentation format, which was subsequently circulated within the entire working group for comment.

The target date for the first working draft of the standard is November 1.

If you are interested in learning more about this effort, contact Beth Ladd at

ASA Bi-Annual Compensation and Benefits Report Now Available

Once again, ASA has teamed with a variety of different distribution-related trade associations produce to the Bi-Annual Compensation and Benefits Report.

The report provides salary data for more than 40 distribution-specific job functions from warehouse workers and counter salespeople all the way up to the CEO and all points between. The survey data comes from nearly 600 wholesalers operating more than 8,000 locations.

Another key added feature of the report deals with best practices on topics such as retention strategies, benefits packages and incentivization.

ASA distributor members who put their data into the report, received it for free. ASA members who did not put data into the report can purchase it for $399, while non-ASA members can purchase the report for $899.

For more information on this popular and critical benchmarking report, contact ASA’s Bri Baresel at

Interested in Becoming an ASA Distributor Member?

If you are interested in joining the 100 other IMARK Plumbing distributors that are ASA members, contact ASA Vice President of Sales and Operations Mike Miazga at to learn more about how your firm can benefit from being part of the industry’s only national trade association for more than 50 years.

ASA’s Taylor Albano, Steve Edwards and Beth Ladd contributed to this story.