Fleet Maintenance - 51

E CO N O M I C O U T L O O K
ยป It is not until we know what we got right, why
we got it right, and when we got it right that we
know enough to make a complete assessment
of the accuracy of our forecast for our 2020 plan.
Dreamstime

Knowing how, why,
and when you were
right in the past is
the best foundation
for repeating that
process in the future.
just learned that you should not be using the
nine-month figures to make your projections.

Step 2

WDTKAWDTKI?

The importance of "what," "why,"
Step 1
The first step in preparing a new forecast
and "when" as it relates to more
is a careful review of the previous forecast.
what we got right and what we got
successful forecasting projections. Knowing
wrong is not enough.
No, the cat did not just walk across my
keyboard. And the editors weren't asleep when
they reviewed this copy. The jumble you see
in the headline is made up of the first letters
of the words in one of the most important
concepts you will need to know as you start
working on your plan for 2020:
What did they know, and when did they
know it?

By Robert Dieli

ECONOMIST, MACKAY & COMPANY
AND PRESIDENT, RDLB, INC.
MacKay & Company specializes in market research for
commercial trucking, construction equipment, and
agriculture machinery. The company provides strategic
research and analyses to vehicle and component manufacturers, distribution and service channels, industry
associations, and private equity firms. With a long career
managing portfolios and coordinating domestic economic
forecasting programs, Dieli began RDLB, Inc. in 2001. In
this role, Dieli serves as an advisor to many firms in the
trucking, consulting, and financial services sectors. He is
also an economist with MacKay & Company.

Knowing the "why" of what we got right and
what we got wrong is also not enough. It is not
until we know what we got right, why we got
it right, and when we got it right that we know
enough to make a complete assessment of the
accuracy of our forecast.
We made our first projection of aftermarket activity for 2020 at the end of the third
quarter this year, based on the information
available at that time.
Our second projection of aftermarket activity for 2020 will be based on the information
for the full calendar year of 2019 - we will
have this information in late-January 2020.
When assessing these projections next
year, we will compare the actual results of
both projections to see whether the projection we made based on the full-year data
was more accurate than that based on the
partial-year figures.
Why does this matter? Because if it turns
out that the projection based on the full-year
figures is significantly more accurate than the
one based on the nine-month figures, you have

The second step in preparing a new forecast
is deciding which variables to include and
how much weight to give them. Pro tip: less
is more.
When we take on an engagement where a
client wants us to make projections, we start
the conversation with this question: "What
piece of information about the future would
give you the most confidence in making the
decision for which you need the forecast?" We
ask this for two reasons. The first is to better
understand the client's situation. The second
is to exclude all irrelevant information.
Don't forecast what you don't have to. For
example, there is no point in including a global economic outlook if the client tells us that
knowing whether their best customer will be
in business a year from now matters most.

Step 3

You will now be ready to proceed to the
third and final step in the planning process:
letting your audience know the margin for
error. This is not a cop-out. It is also not an
excuse. It is the basis for realistic expectations. If you have narrowed the forecast
elements to those that matter most, and you
have identified the reasons why and when
reliable information will become available,
it is perfectly acceptable for you to advise
the audience of how wrong you can be and
still be right.
Preparing plans is never easy. With uncertainty on the rise, you will be tempted to add
variables to your analysis. Before you do that,
keep in mind an adage from the folks who
build bridges and roads. "When in doubt,
make it stout, out of things you know about."
Knowing how, why, and when you were
right in the past is the best foundation for
repeating that process in the future.

October 2019 | VehicleServicePros.com

51


http://www.VehicleServicePros.com

Fleet Maintenance

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fleet Maintenance

Uptime: Are all systems secure?
Cover Story: Connecting to the future
Vehicles: Engine trends impacting performance and fuel efficiency
In the Bay: Understanding tire pressure monitoring and management systems
Shop Operations: How fleets can benefit from RCM
Management: Are you a good global citizen?
Economic Outlook: WDTKAWDTKI?
Powertrain: What are fault code action plans, and how can they help improve the vehicle diagnostic process?
Braking & Collision Avoidance: How will electric vehicles impact commercial truck braking systems?
Fleet Parts & Components
Tools & Equipment
Classifieds
Guest Editorial: Differences servicing air disc brakes versus drum brakes
Fleet Maintenance - 1
Fleet Maintenance - 2
Fleet Maintenance - 3
Fleet Maintenance - 4
Fleet Maintenance - 5
Fleet Maintenance - 6
Fleet Maintenance - 7
Fleet Maintenance - Uptime: Are all systems secure?
Fleet Maintenance - 9
Fleet Maintenance - Cover Story: Connecting to the future
Fleet Maintenance - 11
Fleet Maintenance - 12
Fleet Maintenance - 13
Fleet Maintenance - 14
Fleet Maintenance - 15
Fleet Maintenance - 16
Fleet Maintenance - 17
Fleet Maintenance - 18
Fleet Maintenance - 19
Fleet Maintenance - Vehicles: Engine trends impacting performance and fuel efficiency
Fleet Maintenance - 21
Fleet Maintenance - 22
Fleet Maintenance - 23
Fleet Maintenance - 24
Fleet Maintenance - 25
Fleet Maintenance - 26
Fleet Maintenance - 27
Fleet Maintenance - 28
Fleet Maintenance - 29
Fleet Maintenance - 30
Fleet Maintenance - 31
Fleet Maintenance - 32
Fleet Maintenance - 33
Fleet Maintenance - In the Bay: Understanding tire pressure monitoring and management systems
Fleet Maintenance - 35
Fleet Maintenance - 36
Fleet Maintenance - 37
Fleet Maintenance - 38
Fleet Maintenance - 39
Fleet Maintenance - 40
Fleet Maintenance - 41
Fleet Maintenance - 42
Fleet Maintenance - 43
Fleet Maintenance - Shop Operations: How fleets can benefit from RCM
Fleet Maintenance - 45
Fleet Maintenance - 46
Fleet Maintenance - 47
Fleet Maintenance - 48
Fleet Maintenance - 49
Fleet Maintenance - Management: Are you a good global citizen?
Fleet Maintenance - Economic Outlook: WDTKAWDTKI?
Fleet Maintenance - Powertrain: What are fault code action plans, and how can they help improve the vehicle diagnostic process?
Fleet Maintenance - 53
Fleet Maintenance - Braking & Collision Avoidance: How will electric vehicles impact commercial truck braking systems?
Fleet Maintenance - 55
Fleet Maintenance - Fleet Parts & Components
Fleet Maintenance - 57
Fleet Maintenance - 58
Fleet Maintenance - 59
Fleet Maintenance - 60
Fleet Maintenance - 61
Fleet Maintenance - Tools & Equipment
Fleet Maintenance - 63
Fleet Maintenance - 64
Fleet Maintenance - 65
Fleet Maintenance - 66
Fleet Maintenance - 67
Fleet Maintenance - 68
Fleet Maintenance - 69
Fleet Maintenance - 70
Fleet Maintenance - 71
Fleet Maintenance - 72
Fleet Maintenance - Classifieds
Fleet Maintenance - Guest Editorial: Differences servicing air disc brakes versus drum brakes
Fleet Maintenance - 75
Fleet Maintenance - 76
Fleet Maintenance - I1
Fleet Maintenance - I2
Fleet Maintenance - S1
Fleet Maintenance - S2
Fleet Maintenance - S3
Fleet Maintenance - S4
Fleet Maintenance - S5
Fleet Maintenance - S6
Fleet Maintenance - S7
Fleet Maintenance - S8
Fleet Maintenance - S9
Fleet Maintenance - S10
Fleet Maintenance - S11
Fleet Maintenance - S12
Fleet Maintenance - S13
Fleet Maintenance - S14
Fleet Maintenance - S15
Fleet Maintenance - S16
Fleet Maintenance - S17
Fleet Maintenance - S18
Fleet Maintenance - S19
Fleet Maintenance - S20
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