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Citrin Cooperman Launches 2013 Funeral Directors Survey

Citrin Cooperman, a leading accounting and business consulting firm, announced that its annual funeral directors survey is available for directors and owners to provide their perspectives on important industry issues. Citrin Cooperman has produced this survey for more than a decade. Any funeral director in the United States can participate in this survey. 

The survey may be accessed online at http://www.citrincooperman.com/industries/funeral-homes/. If you prefer to complete the survey in paper, contact Citrin Cooperman at 973-218-0500 for a questionnaire.

Participants will receive a free, fully customized copy of the survey findings, comparing their funeral home to others in their region. Responses will be compiled to create statewide and regional averages; all individual funeral home information will be kept strictly confidential. The deadline for participation is July 31, and results should be available by Sept. 15, 2013.

The survey asks a combination of "benchmarking" questions which provide year-over-year information as well as new questions on looming issues and trends facing the industry.

Given the news of a recent, high-profile merger, this year's survey will address consolidation within the industry. It will also ask respondents for their perspective on additional educational requirements for professionals, the sale of food and beverages, and the growing use of social media. Traditional questions cover areas such as pricing and profitability, payments and financial issues, technology, value of services, the expansion of services, and insight into specific revenue generators such as caskets and pre-need planning.

"We recognize that as the industry evolves, there are challenges that each funeral home experiences," said Ed Horton, partner-in-charge of the Funeral Industry Services practice at Citrin Cooperman. "With educational requirements and pending mergers and acquisitions, the landscape is impacted for owners and directors. In addition to questions we ask each year, this year's survey also addresses new areas that help funeral directors better understand what their peers are thinking and actions they are taking in response to these issues."

Past surveys have identified a variety of trends. Last year's survey, which included responses from more than 200 participants representing more than 300 funeral homes primarily in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut, indicated that funeral home executives continued to struggle with profitability, but began taking steps to offer services and market to a new generation of customer through social media, other tech-related services, as well as the use of a celebrant.

A growing number of responses came from outside the region over the past several years. While Citrin Cooperman has offices throughout the New York metropolitan area, and in Philadelphia, the survey is open to funeral home directors throughout the United States.

"The survey represents a yearly snapshot for the industry," said Horton. "Each year, the quality and depth of information improves as participation in the survey grows. The results provide information that allows funeral home executives to review their business in comparison to the entire industry, and to plan accordingly."