Survey: Region’s businesses plan more investment, growth
Northern Nevada business owners and managers expect the boom to continue.
A first-of-its-kind survey unveiled during the Directions 2005 event last week found nearly 52 percent of the respondents expect economic conditions in northern Nevada to improve even more during 2005.
Only 3 percent expect conditions to worsen.
And 71 percent of the respondents in the survey said they expect their revenues to increase during the next 12 months.
The survey, the brainchild of Lorna Shepard, vice president and director of account planning at the Rose/Glenn Group in Reno,was conducted via e-mail in December.
It drew 301 responses from the 2,800 people who received the survey, and Shepard said the margin of error is about 5 percent.
InfoSearch, a Reno-based market research firm, analyzed the data.
The respondents said they plan to invest in plant, equipment and new employees to meet the demands of growing revenue.
More than 46 percent said they project an increase in capital spending during 2005,more than 41 percent said they plan to expand facilities in northern Nevada, and 54.7 percent said they plan to hire more employees.
The survey found, however, that employers are nervous about their ability to find good people.
About 29 percent of the respondents said that hiring skilled employees is the biggest challenge facing businesses in the region.
Other significant challenges, they said, are increasing sales (18.5 percent), controlling operating costs (13.8 percent) and dealing with the rising cost of benefits (12.5 percent.) Among the high-demand jobs in coming months, the survey found,will be administrative and sales positions.
Following close behind are professional positions other than information technology and management jobs.
Shepard plans to conduct the survey twice a year to track trends in the regional economic outlook.
As of April 7, Washoe County and the cities of Reno and Sparks received over 350 complaints about non-essential businesses remaining open. Compliance staff is investigating and giving initial courtesy notices — no citations have yet been given.