Southeastern Wisconsin business executives are more optimistic about the direction of their companies in the second half of the year than they were when the year began, according to the latest BizTimes Business Dashboard Survey.
The majority of readers responding to the survey expect gains in revenues, profits and hiring in the second half of the year, according to the new survey. Nearly 200 decision-makers from area firms participated in the mid-year survey.
In the new survey, 73.0 percent of respondents projected more revenue for their companies in 2012 over last year, up from 65.5 percent last December, when the first Dashboard Survey was launched. The number of employers who expected decreased revenues for 2012 increased slightly to 11.0 percent from 8.3 percent. The number of companies projecting flat revenues for 2012 fell to 16.0 percent from 26.3 percent in December.
Overall respondents' optimism remains high, with 63.3 percent (up from 62.2 percent) expecting to see an increase in company profits in 2012, while 18.4 percent (down from 28.8 percent) predicted profits to remain flat and 15.3 percent (up from 9.0 percent) are projecting profit declines.
On another more positive note, the survey showed hiring is on the upswing. More than half of the respondents (54 percent) are planning to add staff in 2012 (up from 43.5 percent in December). The number projecting flat hiring trends fell to 41.7 percent from 51.1 percent. The number expecting to cut staff in 2012 fell to 4.3 percent from 5.4 percent six months ago.
Other findings from the survey include: