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A volunteer group of spirited developers, technologists and business leaders gathered this week at Hit Promotional Products in Tampa, FL to draft and develop new standards for the non-profit group PromoStandards. The focus of the gathering was to create new standards that revolutionize how the industry clears and resolves purchase order issues and holds.

Companies represented at the event included, Halo Branded Solutions, Proforma, Hit Promotional Products, AnyPromo, Distributor Central, Commonsku, Essent Corp, Gemline, PCNA and Starline.

PromoStandards Committee Chair and Hit Promotional Products President, Eric Shonebarger said, “We collaborate best in person when we can lock this high-bandwidth group into a room for 2 days with clear objectives and deliverables. We walked out with a great MVP and draft standard that we can take back to our respective teams and the PromoStandards community”.

The highlight of the workshop was development on the industry’s first standard for order management and workflows. As we emerge from the pandemic, distributors and suppliers alike have become increasingly bogged down by order issues and holds. PromoStandards has been working to simplify the data exchange to resolve those holds while providing real time feed back to distributors on hold resolution options for a given purchase order.

PromoStandards Board Member and Starline COO, Jon Norris stated, “This standard will be a game changer for the entire industry. Regardless of PO submission source, we now have the ability to modify orders, resolve issues and clear holds. With the most impactful hold resolution being digital Proofs”

The PromoStandards event triggered a lively discussion in the Facebook Group, Promotional Products Professionals. This discussion highlighted the value of PromoStandards to the community, the power of collaboration, and challenges the industry faces with diversity and inclusion.

Commonsku CEO, Catherine Graham, stated “PromoStandards is an open and inclusive non-profit where anyone who is interested in investing time and energy in the future of integration between suppliers and distributors can participate. This is an organic and grass roots group of volunteers who have spent years trying to improve the efficiency of the industry.”

PromoStandards will be previewing these services and more at their first annual Hack-A-Thon and Technology Summit this October in Tampa, FL. Registration details to attend that event can be found at:


Do you want to become a member of PromoStandards and help us collaborate to develop open industry standards? PromoStandards has volunteer opportunities for every industry skillset. Any industry firm can join PromoStandards and collaborate with your peers! Contact Jessica Shonebarger at to become a member today!

Do you Standardize on PromoStandards? Join the over 65 companies who have signed on to our statement that “PromoStandards Open Standards are our Preferred Systems Integration Method for the Promotional Products Industry”. Join Us Today:

PromoStandards is a 501.c6 volunteer member organization with over 200 industry firms as registered members. Learn more at