Many readers of our blog know of our work as a result of having seen one of our acclaimed economic presentations. Others follow our analysis and commentary via subscriptions to the Trends Report™ or Insider™, ITR's long-running publications on the macroeconomy.
It is the other aspect of what we do – that is, providing forecasting and consulting services to individual companies – that often flies under the radar. It is this work that can have a substantial impact on individual organizations, as it provides a slew of very important benefits for business leaders and key decision-makers.
Our consultative programs deliver biannual, triannual, or quarterly reports. Each report provides a three-year (or longer), company-specific sales or volume forecast. The reports are supported by recurring discussions with one of our ITR economists, who expands on the story behind the forecast and explains the upside and downside risks to the outlook. There are typically three segments to these discussions:
A. Macro Content – The Overall Story Behind the Numbers
To set the foundation for a productive conversation, our report reviews usually start with a well-thought-out and relevant macro content section that includes narrowed-down micro indicators. When warranted, an international perspective is also included. Our messaging is communicated clearly and thoroughly, with effective visual evidence to corroborate the talking points. The information presented is both current and relevant to the business. The storyline is fluid and logical. The goal of this portion of the review call is to provide enough macro content to establish the overall story, and also to address the specifics of what's going on in the business.
B. Client Data – The Company-Specific Forecast
While the big picture view is necessary and interesting, the real value lies in discussing company-specific information. In the next portion of the review call, the ITR economist will cover Internal Trends – or, evidence that comes from the company’s own data. This includes interpretation of ITR Checking Points™. The economist will present future performance expectations for the company’s sales or volume. The 12-quarter forecast is thoroughly reviewed and presented with ample evidence to corroborate our expectations. This includes leading indicators, relevant Trends Report series and their forecasts, and other pertinent data series, such as commodities prices, exchange rates, and utilization rates.
C. Consulting – Actionable and Practical Advice
Throughout the macro and client-specific discussion, our economists ask many questions about the challenges and opportunities facing the company. The conversation flows both ways by design; the goal is to attain better insight into the business and the rationale behind recent developments. With that, the ITR economist can provide targeted Management Objectives™, which comprise actionable advice specific to the client. The goal is to improve the quality of both short-term and long-term strategic decision-making by the company’s management team.
If you are interested in learning more about ITR’s company forecasting capabilities, or if you want to explore a consulting program with us, please reach out. We’re here to help.
Senior Business Advisor