The “2011 SRP Metro-Phoenix Business Study: New Strategies for Success” reveals how businesses have survived and adapted operations during the economic slowdown.
“The past several years have been economically challenging for families, businesses and every level of government. Everyone felt the pinch of our recent economic downturn,” said Mark Bonsall, Salt River Project (SRP) general manager and chief executive officer. “As a company doing business in Arizona for more than 100 years, SRP knows the vitality of our community is directly related to the success of our local businesses.”
SRP, Arizona State University and WestGroup Research conducted the study to determine how businesses have adapted during the economic slowdown.
Phoenix-area businesses were asked to name the top challenges faced in the past two or three years. Fifty-six percent cited the economy as their biggest challenge, followed by cash flow (14 percent) and finding/retaining customers (11 percent).
A similar study was done in spring 2007. The top challenges cited before the economic slowdown were cash flow (21 percent), finding/retaining employees (18 percent), finding/retaining customers (14 percent) and marketing (7 percent). Only 1 percent mentioned the economy.
Despite enduring a tumultuous four years, 50 percent of businesses anticipate their financial position will improve in the next 12 months; 12 percent expect their situation to become worse. In addition, 46 percent expect to expand within their next planning cycle, and another 46 percent plan to remain the same size.
In addition to partnering on this report, SRP also created the Business Resource Center (BRC) at srpbizresource.com. The BRC is a free, online, one-stop information center that offers important business information, resources and advice to help take businesses to the next level.
“SRP wants to be part of the solution that keeps the Valley moving forward,” Bonsall said. “We believe this study and our Business Resource Center are steps in the right direction. We view both as tools to move us closer to a stronger and more prosperous Phoenix economy.”