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Leviton rolls out new motion sensors

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Melville, N.Y.-based Leviton introduced a full line of residential occupancy and vacancy sensors that combine state-of-the-art technology with a sleek new design to provide optimal management of lighting and motor loads.

Available in either Automatic-ON (Occupancy) or Manual-ON (Vacancy) switching, these energy-saving sensors are available in models engineered to control current LED, CFL, fluorescent, incandescent, halogen or motor loads. 

Featured in the new line is a Dimming Sensor, available in both Manual-ON and Automatic-ON models. The Dimming Sensor provides users the ability to easily adjust lighting levels of compatible dimmable LED, CFL and incandescent bulbs for combined energy-efficiency and ambiance. A patented built-in starting technology ensures smooth start-up for hard to start CFLs.

“As consumers seek cost-effective ways to reduce energy consumption, Leviton Sensors provide an ideal solution to effectively control both lighting and motor loads to help reduce power usage”, said Michael Neary, Leviton’s Product Manager for Residential Lighting Controls.

 

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The 2012 HCN Top 100 Distributor Scoreboard

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The nation’s leading wholesale distributors of home improvement products and building materials saw an increase of 2.23% in 2011 sales, according to the research that produced the 2012 Home Channel News Top 100 Distributor Scoreboard.

Click here for analysis.

Click here for the full list.

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Employee Purchase Programs under the microscope

BY SHRM online staff

Among U.S. adults employed full time or with a spouse employed full time, 37% said they would be “at least somewhat likely” to use employee purchase programs for major purchases if given the opportunity, according to research published in "By The Numbers: Which Employees Use Purchase Programs and Why," a white paper by Purchasing Power LLC, a provider of e-commerce employee purchase programs. Purchasing programs give employees the opportunity to procure big-ticket items using a payroll deduction, as an alternative to credit cards.

The sluggish economy has stimulated increased employee interest in employer benefits overall. According to the 2012 MetLife 10th Annual Study of Employee Benefits Trends, nearly half of U.S. employees (49%) said that because of the economy they are counting on their employer’s benefits program to help with their financial needs.

“Voluntary benefits are one way employers can help ease fiscal stress and help employees get back on a firmer financial footing,” said Richard Carrano, president and CEO of Purchasing Power. He called employee purchase programs “a viable, cost-effective alternative to other consumer purchase plans, such as employer discounts, layaway, rent-to-own and even credit cards, as savvy shoppers make more-informed decisions about their household purchases.”

To understand which workers are using employee purchase programs, when and what products they have a tendency to buy, Purchasing Power collected 2,091 responses among customers who placed orders from November 2011 through January 2012, producing a “demographic snapshot” of the typical user: a middle-income female, age 35 to 44, who is married with at least one child in the household.

Not just for the holidays

According to an earlier survey of Purchasing Power customers conducted in 2011, offering workers access to an employee purchase program with year-round access improves engagement with the program. Approximately 32 percent of employees used the program at least once during the course of two years, and another 65 percent used it two or more times in the same time frame.

While use of the program is highest during the holiday buying season beginning in November, fitness and recreation products are popular during January (as people make New Year’s resolutions), outdoor equipment and home furniture purchases usually hit highs during April (in anticipation of summer) and purchases for computers and electronics peak during August (as children head back to school).

Employee purchase programs have evolved into an employee benefit that appeals to distinct groups within the workforce, according to Carrano. “By 2050, the American workforce will be heavily populated with three generations: Gen Xers, Millennials and Gen Z, the multi-tasking iGeneration. In preparation, forward-thinking employers are shedding the traditional concept that one benefits package fits all and, instead, are offering plans that are more meaningful to an individual based on where he or she is in life. Employee purchase programs certainly fit into that strategy,” he noted.

Have HR-related questions and concerns? Get access to essential forms, policies and guides, plus a live call center, at ToolkitHR.com, powered by HCN and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

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