Time Is Right for Uniform Manufacturers to Step It Up with Rental Providers

COVID-19 has created business conditions prompting uniform services to rethink their relationships with suppliers and their practices related to service agreements with their customers.  Take advantage of their willingness to explore new strategies and tactics by connecting with them through a new membership for your company in TRSA, the only association for the entire linen and uniform services industry, from international  to local operations.

Fierce Competitors, Well Established Relationships | COVID-19 Impacts: Possible Rental Shift to Direct Sale | Willingness to Work with New Suppliers | Where’s the “Rental” in TRSA? | Dig Into Industry’s Marketing Expertise | How to Step It Up and Promote | NAUMD 2022 Convention and Exposition

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Fierce Competitors, Well Established Relationships

Controlling 60%+ of the market, flush with professional salespeople and route drivers in constant contact with uniform users, TRSA’s largest members (providing continent-wide service) leave no stone unturned to generate revenue. See their uniform purchase webpages below. Consider how long these organizations and their local/regional competitors have been in business; hundreds of them for 50 years or more. They have longstanding relationships and strong rapport with uniform users you can leverage to make them better distributors of your merchandise.

Aramark: Spring 2022 Buying Guide

Cintas: Uniform and Apparel Purchase

UniFirst: Workwear Direct, Spring and Summer 2022

COVID-19 Impacts: Possible Rental Shift to Direct Sale

High inflation and short supply have created complications for uniform services who are accustomed to signing customers to long-term agreements at roughly the same pricing for years to come. Uniform rental providers may be more hesitant to make such deals, unsure of their profit as their merchandise costs rise. Could shorter-term direct sale deals fill their revenue gaps? Investment analyst Robert W. Baird & Co. estimates linen and uniform companies could add $800 million in direct sales in today’s market with the right effort.

Willingness to Work with New Suppliers

TRSA’s March survey of members found that 93% of uniform rental companies are experiencing uniform/workwear supply chain shortages. To mitigate the problem, nearly 90% are turning to alternate suppliers and maintaining larger inventories. More uniform customers want custom products for a distinctive image. The days of providing huge numbers of wearers with just powder blue shirts and navy pants are long gone. Your company could be well positioned to capitalize on this continuing trend by supplying them with garments for rental or sale.

Where’s the “Rental” in TRSA?

Perhaps you’ve noticed that TRSA never identifies itself in its promotion with its full name (Textile Rental Services Association of America). Instead, you see the tagline, “Strengthening and Promoting the Linen, Uniform and Facility Services Industry.” It’s an effort to be inclusive of the different ways these organizations sell, including uniform direct sale and leasing. It also represents opportunity for these to become more important in TRSA programs.

Dig Into Industry’s Marketing Expertise

Becoming a TRSA member ties your organization into the broadest collaboration of professionals ever assembled to monitor the textile and uniform needs of industries across the economy. Cintas pioneer Dick Farmer once told TRSA, “I can’t think of a type of business that doesn’t need a uniform.” That philosophy explains Cintas’ explosive growth and characterizes the groundwork for TRSA’s approach to wearer markets today. Specialized programs are developed for members that specialize in these four segments that comprise the entire private sector economy. Each sector has a committee of TRSA members that organizes activities specific to the sector; see links below for who’s involved. As a new TRSA member, your company can have a representative appointed to whichever committee interests you:

Food & Beverage (restaurants, catering, other foodservice)
Healthcare (hospitals, outpatient medical)
Hospitality (hotels, B&Bs, other lodging)
Industrial/Uniform/Workwear (all other industries, greatest users of customized garments)
All Committees

How To Step It Up and Promote

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Becoming a TRSA Supplier Partner member opens to your company to TRSA’s range of activities that enable you to interact with linen and uniform services operators, including virtual and in-person event attendance and sponsorship. To build your brand, there’s free publicity and discounted advertising in TRSA media. If you exhibit at or visit Clean 2012, the world’s largest laundry industry trade show, TRSA Supplier-Partner-only benefits await you.

TRSA Experience @ Clean Show
Activities | Advertising/Publicity

Advertising | Sponsorships

NAUMD 2022 Convention and Exposition

Meet TRSA staff at this event, May 22-24, Reston, VA. Email Ken Koepper, director, member and industry relations, or call 540-613-5110.