Ringing in 2015: A New and Brighter Year

Jan. 1, 2015

Did you vote this past November? If HVACR Distribution Business readers are anything like CONTRACTOR and Contracting Business readers, I'm pretty sure you voted. Let me digress for just a few minutes here … This is the first time I am penning the Editor's Note in an issue of HVACR Distribution Business. I hope that some of you may already be familiar with me. I have been working at Penton for a little more than six years, and a few years ago I became senior content editor of CONTRACTOR, and I am definitely excited to be working with HVACR Distribution Business staff and readers. Lately, you have probably read Editor's Notes by Terry McIver, executive editor of Contracting Business. Terry and I decided to take turns writing Editor's Notes since he's representing the HVAC side of the business and I am representing the hydronics side of the business. I hope you will enjoy reading our different perspectives about this industry.

So, back to the topic at hand … The New Year is looking brighter when compared to years past.

One reason many contractors believe there is a bright spot in 2015 is because of the mid-term elections that took plan in November of 2014. Columnist Charlie McCrudden, who heads government relations for Air Conditioning Contractors of America, said it the best, “If elections have consequences, then the November mid-terms will affect Senate Democrats and the White House the most. The winners are Republicans in both chambers who will find it easier to push their agenda.”

When the new representatives take office this month, there will be a shift in priorities. To find out how this will affect the HVACR hydronics distribution industry, read Charlie's column about the new Congress on page 20.

Besides the mid-term elections, there are other reasons for a brighter year ahead. In the 2015 Forecast With the Experts, John Mesenbrink writes about an optimistic 2015, and this is just not his opinion, but a conclusion he came to after interviewing the leaders at Emerson Climate Technologies, Air-Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration Institute, Honeywell, Johnstone Supply and Rheem. According to the thought leaders of these companies and association, some of the drivers for 2015 are standards and regulations, evolving technology, eCommerce and, of course, continuing education and training.

All in all, especially with changes in standards and regulations, it is of utmost importance for distributors and manufacturers to work with one another to make sure that their customers – the contractors – have all the resources they need to be successful. Part of making successful contractors is to offer training (training just happens to be one of my favorite topics to write about). I can honestly say that since I started writing for CONTRACTOR more than six years ago, training has become top of mind for manufacturers, associations, distributors and contractors. Training allows your customers to stay up-to-date in the industry.

For example, in John's article he notes that Johnstone Supply is partnering with suppliers to roll out new technologies, plus provide training, and many manufacturers are offering contractors the opportunity to take training courses too. To find out more about the 2015 industry drivers, make sure to read John's article on page 12.

Also in this issue, Elaine Yetzer Simon reports about a brighter economy. She admits that although there are some brighter spots in 2015, there will still be some unknowns that will affect the economy, but there are always unknowns – which we really can't do much about – so I say, let's focus on the positives here.

Some of the brighter spots Elaine points out are as follows: Americans are feeling better about the economy than in the past; a recent national survey conducted by Hart-McInturff shows that 26 percent said the economy is excellent or good. Regarding the stock market, numbers since the low point on March 9, 2009, have rebounded dramatically. Unemployment numbers are also looking decent. And, the National Association for Business Economics is forecasting that U.S. economic growth will jump 3.1 percent in 2015, compared to the 2.2-percent growth the country has experienced since the recession. Make sure to read Elaine's article on page 11.

I hope you enjoy the January issue of HVACR Distribution Business magazine! As you can see, it's chock-full of great, informative articles regarding the New Year and what you can look forward to as an industry distributor.

Cheers and Happy New Year,
Candace Roulo

HVACR Distribution Business welcomes letters to the editor. Please send correspondence via email to [email protected].