Contract Glazier Outlook Index Spikes in 2022

By Nick St. Denis

The annual Contract Glazier Outlook Index (CGOI), a numerical measurement of the optimism and current health of the glass and glazing industry, saw a massive bounce-back to start 2022. Coming off its lowest mark since the index was established six years ago, the indicator was at its highest ever in 2022.

2022’s CGOI stands at 72.2, more than 20 points higher than 2021’s reading of 51.1. (Any reading above 50 represents a positive outlook—and the higher number, the better). The previous high was in 2019 and 2020, according to Key Media & Research (KMR), parent company of USGlass magazine and a leading provider of information and research to the glass industry. The Index is one segment of KMR’s Glass and Glazing Industry Outlook, an annual in-depth report on the state of the industry (see page 52 for more information).

KMR’s CGOI is made up of five key drivers and measurements, weighted according to importance. Those drivers, in order of greatest to least weight, are: Expected revenue changes; backlog; hiring plans; previous year satisfaction; and recent hiring.

The 2022 Glass and Glazing Industry Outlook by Key Media & Research (KMR) is a comprehensive look at the state of the U.S. architectural glass and metal industry. The report provides historical and forward-looking insight and analysis of recent trends to give suppliers, contractors, manufacturers, fabricators, retailers and more a sense of the
industry’s well-being. KMR’s research division utilizes survey data, regularly curated internal data, in-depth analysis of secondary data, application of proprietary models, and expertise from the industry’s leading information provider. The report will be available for purchase in February at www.keymediaresearch.com/research

A Look Back: How Did 2021 Meet Your Business Expectations? (Scale of 0-100)

100 | Far exceeded expectations
50 | Exactly as expected
0 | Extremely dissatisfied

Contract glaziers were asked to grade, on a scale of 0-100, the degree to which 2021 met their expectations in terms of overall business. A grade of 0 represented “Extremely dissatisfied,” 50 represented “Exactly as expected” and 100 represented “Far exceeded expectations.” The average of all respondents was a grade of 72, up from 2020’s grade of 66. The better-than-expected rating over the past several years shows the industry is typically cautiously optimistic—which is especially notable given circumstances resulting from the pandemic.

A Look Ahead

Nearly three-quarters (73%) of contract glaziers expect an increase in sales in 2022 compared to 2021, with nearly half (46%) of all respondents anticipating an increase of 10% or more. This is well above a year ago, when roughly half (51%) of glazing contractors were expecting any increase in 2021 compared to 2020.

Increase of 10% or more: 46.3%
Increase of less than 10%: 26.8%
No change: 9.8%
Decrease of less than 10%: 7.3%
Decrease of 10% or more: 9.8%

Hiring Plans

Glazing contractors were on a hiring spree in 2021 and plan for more of this same this year. Seventy-six percent of respondents say they hired additional full-time employees in 2021, and an even greater 84% expect to bring in new employees in 2022.

76% Hired additional full-time employees in 2021

84% expect to hire new employees in 2022

Assessing Backlog

Glaziers were also asked if their backlog entering 2022 exceeds their backlog entering 2021. Sixty-six percent said “yes,” which was more than double the percentage in 2021 (29%).

29% increased their backlog in 2021

66% increased their backlog entering 2022

2022 Regional Contract Glazier Outlook Index

Any number above 50 indicates a positive outlook, and any number below 50 indicates a negative outlook. (The higher number the better). Highest possible: 96.7 / lowest possible: 3.3.

National: 72.2 [2021: 51.1]

Northeast: 75.4

South Atlantic; 73.6

Midwest: 68.8

South Central: 63.3

West: 74.1

Nick St. Denis is the director of research for Key Media & Research (KMR),
parent company of USGlass magazine.

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