Many contractors already get it. Many distributors get it. If you look at comments fromThe News’Contractor Consultants this month regarding the Internet, you’ll see that many contractors understand and appreciate what a Web presence means to them.

These contractors have integrated the Web into their business plans, and the Internet’s potential to make companies larger players is reflected in a comment by consultant Steve Miles.

“As a presence on the Internet I consider it advertising. However, we are not currently using its full potential. I think it will be used more aggressively by all ‘brick and mortar’ retailers, allowing more depth, content, and information than other media permit.”

In a story that appeared in The News last week, it was reported that the U.S. Census Bureau released its E-Commerce 2000 “E-Stats” report, which tracks e-commerce sales for manufacturing, merchant, wholesale-distribution, retail, and certain service sectors. Census data show rapid adoption of e-business by merchant wholesalers, who accounted for more than one-fifth of all e-commerce sales in the economy, as measured by the bureau.

Dirk Van Dongen, president of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors (NAW), said, “What’s interesting is that just a couple of years ago this technology was perceived as a threat to ‘bricks and mortar’ wholesale-

distribution. It has since become a real benefit to wholesaler-distributors who know how to use it.”

Some contractors and distributors get it. Now it’s time for the entire hvacr trade to embrace e-commerce, not begrudge it.

With that in mind, I’d like to introduce our newest Contractor Consultant and share some of his thoughts on how his company uses the Internet.


Todd S. Morgan is president of Comprehensive Energy Services, Inc. (CES), Altamonte Springs, FL. CES is an award-winning commercial-industrial, design- build, construction, service, controls and maintenance contractor serving customers throughout Florida. I could list all of the company’s credentials and accomplishments, but I’d suggest visiting the company’s website,, for the complete story.

One visit should explain how important the Internet is to Morgan and his company.

I met Morgan a few years ago while doing a profile on his company. Over the years we have bumped into each other at various industry functions, including several Excellence Alliance Inc. (EAI) meetings. He knows the business and is good at what he does. He’s a 26-year veteran of the hvacr wars.

This is what Morgan has to say about his company’s website:

“We have had a CES website for the last four years. Initially, we envisioned the website as a marketing tool for prospective customers. We never received the response from prospective customers that we had originally hoped to receive, but we were surprised to learn that the website was an excellent recruiting tool for employees.

“It has been especially good for attracting people in our industry from the north that want to relocate to sunny warm Florida (especially in the wintertime). I think that when they consider relocating, their employment search starts on the Net.

“For the past four years we have been continually receiving inquiries and r¿m¿from project managers, estimators, trades workers and service techs interested in relocating to Orlando and we have had a relatively high percentage of hiring from this source.”

Who said a website has to be used just to attract customers?

Hall is business management editor. He can be reached at 734-542-6214; 734-542-6215 (fax); (e-mail).

Publication date: 04/15/2002