Know your score, chart your path

with an enterprise-grade leadership tool

The 8th Annual Landscape Industry Peer Benchmark Report will help you know your score.

Sponsored by:

This year's participation is closed. Sign up to get notified for next year's report.

Reserve your spot today — upload your financial documents (12 months ending 9/30) later.

Participants will be invited to an exclusive webinar in December discussing the report findings and how to get the most out of the report!



To say the least, 2021 has proven to be an interesting year. 

The landscape industry from top to bottom has faced challenges ranging from labor shortages and supply chain issues to the introduction and growth of technologies that might be revolutionary (some day).  

But where challenges arise there are also opportunities. Finding those opportunities is what separates big thinkers from small thinkers. Big thinkers look ahead and anticipate challenges so they can plan to win. 

Frankly, that is why we created the Peer Benchmark Report for the Landscape Industry. The report is an enterprise grade tool that equips your leadership to think big about what you can achieve in the coming year.

What is possible? Did we win last year? Where do we focus this year?

We have produced this report for seven years and every year it gets better. This year's report is already shaping up to be our biggest yet. 

I have been anticipating this year's report even more than usual because I think it will hold more insights than usual. Anyone looking to learn from a volatile year, this is your chance. 

Said another way, this year's report is a tool made to help your team think big about 2022. 

Are you investing in financial leadership?

Have you ever wondered why a CFO at company like BrightView is paid nearly $2 million a year? And that is just one finance person out of the many they employ! Big companies invest in financial talent because it helps owners create more value in their companies. The good news is that you live in a time where you can get great financial talent without having to hire them – you can work with The Herring Group.

One way you can get the benefit of our financial talent is the Benchmark Report. We have designed it to take as little of your time as possible. It will give you insights into companies just like yours and into companies different from yours that provide a template for change and growth.

Think about it another way: purchasing the Benchmark Report is the equivalent of hiring excellent financial analysis. You get to see the categorized, anonymized results for your company and an excellent sample of the entire landscape industry. It is purpose-built for you and your team to choose what comparisons you want to use to pinpoint areas of opportunity in your business

Did you know that the top performing companies across last year's report  have operating income margin numbers that a company like BrightView would love to have? It's true. How did they achieve those numbers?  We like to say that numbers tell a story, and the Report tells a very compelling story, indeed. It is a story that can inform, inspire and challenge your team.  

In 2022,  the Benchmark Report can help you lead.

$297 to participate in 2021

How the report works >

More enterprise grade resources at your fingertips

We have learned from our friend Kevin Kehoe, founder of Aspire Software that landscape companies have an opportunity to buy and use technology. Aspire is great example of a technology partner that provides some of the technology leadership that you might need. 

Technology leadership is bringing technology to bear in your organization with the goal of enabling and maximizing your most precious resource: your people. It is putting tools in the hands of your people that makes them better/faster/smarter at their jobs. The sponsors of the Benchmark Report are excellent examples of technology leadership partners—they have put the hours and expertise into building and maintaining best-in-class tools. 

Maximize your people & processes

Why would you want to hire, train, manage (and sometimes, fire) more people when you can buy software that makes existing employees far more efficient and effective? 

Did you know that if you wanted to create a software program like Aspire that you would have to spend more than $10 million? That’s what big companies do and they do it because they understand the value of software when it comes to maximizing their people. But you don’t have to. You can just pay to use Aspire. Then you don’t have to manage the IT infrastructure, programmers, etc. 

Need proof that investing in Aspire pays off? Last year's report saw 11 companies with annual revenues >$2 million report an operating income margin of greater than 10% (or well above the industry average). These 11 companies represent both small and large companies and span a wide variety of service mixes. What did 7 (64%) of those 11 companies have in common? They are Aspire users. The numbers definitely tell a story. 

More with less

If you are using Aspire, are you using IPS for Human Capital Management? IPS not only synchronizes payroll data with Aspire, but also consolidates a number of other functions like applicant tracking, electronic new hire tracking and benefits enrollment. What does that mean? Fewer systems to maintain and less work for your people – which means you can grow without hiring more people. IPS is another example of powerful software and an opportunity to add technology leadership to your company. 

Side note: Do you think your office employees really enjoy keying data in twice or doing the export/import routine? How much wasted time and rework happens when they move from system to system?  

In short, you can get better results with strategic investment in enterprise grade tools.

Why enterprise grade?

The Herring Group and the sponsors of the Benchmark Report have a common goal.

We want to see landscape companies become more valuable.  It is good for the owner and it is good for the employees. It is good for the industry.  We want companies to know where to invest. We want them to enjoy the benefits of those investments and win. 

What is possible? From our report last year, we see plenty of room for more wins. 15% of the participants had an operating income margin greater than 10%. The rest of the companies averaged 4.4%.

If those numbers are not compelling on their own, consider this:  an $8 million dollar a year company that invests in enterprise grade tools to help their team achieve more could move their operating income margin from 6% to 10%. Four percent may not seem like a massive improvement, but it translates to an additional $320,000 in operating income. Imagine what that would mean to your company! 

How the report works.

When you sign up, you get simple instructions about how to upload your income statement and balance sheet directly from your accounting software to a secure server. Your time is extremely valuable. Our goal is to make it as simple as possible to participate.  

No forms, no complication, no wondering if you did it right.

Once we have all the data, we take every company’s revenue and expenses and make consistent classifications so that you can compare the results with confidence.

Then we convert all the major expenses to percentages of total revenue, and we make the results anonymous by deleting the names and showing each company’s results in a separate column from greatest revenue to least revenue.

Example Report snap shot in chart form

And every year, we do a live webinar to review the report findings, answer questions, and show you how you can use the report in your company.

We make this report as simple and actionable as possible for you.

60 Day No-Risk Guarantee

$297 for the Report & Webinar

"This Benchmark Report is unique.  You see each company's data—revenue mix as well as expenses and net income as a percentage of revenue—and it's anonymous.  I use it each year to see how my company is performing.  I love it!"

-Nick DiBenedetto, ND Landscape Inc.

Who is Greg Herring?

When I see numbers, I see a story. 

That ability comes from how I am designed and from my years of experience as a CFO — a Chief Financial Officer. I have also been a Chief Operating Officer, so my focus is on actions — actions that produce results to change the story.  

When I produce reports, they are actionable. 

The Landscape Industry Peer Benchmark Report is an important tool for my success, for the success of the team here at The Herring Group, and for the success of our clients.

  • Please note:

  • If you are a current client of The Herring Group and your company is already on The Path to 12%, you will receive the 2021 Benchmark Report and an invitation to the webinar.

For more than 20 years, benchmark reports have helped me optimize profitability for companies in all types of industries, including the landscape industry. When properly constructed and used, this report is powerful.

This report helps management teams understand what is possible. 

Most managers think they do a great job and if the profits are not there, then it just cannot be better.

The 2021 Landscape Industry Peer Benchmark Report shows them clearly how much other companies are making and what expense ratios need to be present in order to make it happen. The report shows the results of each company (anonymously) in percentage terms to make the profitability and ratios easy to see.

If you show the right people the right data, they will respond with actions that will improve the results.

And that is what I have been doing for more than 20 years!

Also seen on: 

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Questions or concerns?

Frequently Asked Questions


Question: Do I need to be on Aspire in order to participate in the Benchmark Report?

Answer: No. The Benchmark Report is platform agnostic. All you need in order to participate is to upload two (2) financial statements generated from QuickBooks (or your financial software of choice) formatted as an Excel sheet. We provide detailed instructions on how to generate these reports. It will take less than 10 minutes. 


Question: I want to purchase the report, but my team is still working on closing out the last month. Do I need to submit my financials immediately?

Answer: No. You can purchase the report now and you will have time to submit your financials.


Question: Does my company need to be a certain size to benefit from participating in the report?

Answer: Your size should not keep you from participating. One of the best things about the report is that the data is sortable so that you can get clear comparisons with companies like yours (both in terms of size and revenue mix). Every year, we see companies ranging from $1mm up to nearly $100mm per year in revenue participate. We see great performance from companies of all sizes.


Question: How will the report be delivered to me?

Answer: A link to a secure folder with your copy of the report will be provided to you by email on the day the report is released. You will get copies of the report as a PDF, as an Excel file, and a copy of our webinar presentation.


Question: I am unable to attend the post-report webinar. Is it recorded?

Answer: The post-report webinar where I explain both how to use the report and point out some of the interesting findings from the year’s report is recorded and will be available for you and your team to view after the fact.


Question: I am currently a Herring Group client. Do I need to purchase the report?

Answer: All current clients of The Herring Group will receive the Benchmark Report and an invitation to the webinar as a part of our ongoing services.


Question: Can you buy the report without participating?

Answer: No. The report is only available to participants. We work diligently to make sure each participating company's numbers are comparable to the other companies. 


Question: How secure are my numbers? Do you share them with anyone?

Answer: You upload the numbers into a secure Dropbox.  Your company’s dollars are converted to a % of revenue. Then your company is assigned an ID number and your “percentages” are displayed in a column in Excel. Each company’s numbers is in a separate column.


We take this approach to make the data more comparable and to make it easier for people to participate. Participants and sponsors will see the report with anonymous data, only. We use overall statistics to help inform the industry.