Those of you in the metropolitan Milwaukee area will probably recognize the name BizTimes Milwaukee. This publication has been in this marketplace for many years. Among the stories it does is one that uses the results of its Economic Dashboard Survey conducted each year. The survey for 2014 was just published in the January 20 – February 2 magazine. The title was ‘Readers optimistic in Dashboard Survey’ and we thought you might like to see the results.
- 84% of readers expected 2014 revenues to be higher than those of 2013. That compared to just two-thirds of readers last year.
- 80% are projecting greater profits for the new year while barely more than 60% did so last year.
- 72% project new hiring in 2014 while only half expected that for 2013.
- 56% will make significant investments in equipment compared to slightly more than 30% a year earlier.
- 24% expect to expand office or plant space.
- 32% expect health care benefit cost increases of up to 10%; 20% said they were expecting up to a 20% increase and another 20% said they expect their costs to decrease.
- Of those employers above expecting health care benefit cost increases, 75% said they’d pass some or all of the increases along to employees.
- 80% of respondents said they’d increase their investment in branding, advertising and marketing.
- 68% report their companies have a social media strategy.
- 80% say they will provide employee pay raises; that compares to just over 58% last year.
- 60% say they’ll increase the prices of their goods or services in 2014.
- 76% believe the state’s business climate is “improving”
The results certainly show people being “optimistic” about 2014, and we’re excited about that because we, too, feel that optimism and it helps when we see that our expectations supported by the expectations of others.
As you might expect, we’re especially excited that nearly three of every four respondents expect to hire new employees. If you or your company are in that group, may we offer our services to assist in those activities? Many of you are present or past customers and you know our capabilities. For those of you who may not have had experience with us so far, give us a call or drop us an e-mail and we’ll visit with you to determine what you need and explain how we can help you find the good, qualified people you seek.
Tom Krist – President