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Businesses expect to grow

Global Operations Director

The last few years have been stormy ones for the global economy. But according to the businesses we spoke to for April’s Business Confidence Index, the clouds are starting to lift.

We interviewed 16,000 companies in 86 countries, and the message we got was clear. With business confidence back on an even keel, it’s time to look to the future – and start growing again. Okay, so business confidence may have dropped by one point since the September index, and revenue and profits have remained stable, rather than increased. But three quarters of the 16,000 businesses we spoke to expect to make more money in the next year. And they’re clear on how they’re going to cut costs without stopping that growth in its tracks.

It’s interesting to see that the biggest uplift in mood has been in countries that were initially hit the hardest by the downturn, like the USA and UK. But even that increase couldn’t topple the emerging economies of Brazil and India from the top of the chart.

So how are businesses planning to get the most out of a global economy on the mend? For the companies we spoke to, one of the most painful things about the downturn was paying for fixed office space they didn’t need.

So working more flexibly will be a key area of focus (along with shortening their supply chain and using more ‘cloud’ IT applications).