Tuesday, April 27, 2021

VA Economic Outlook Improves Significantly in Q1, Approaches Pre-pandemic Level

“The federal stimulus has certainly done its job. The main challenge for these CEOs now is acquiring the workforce to support this rapid recovery and growth.”

Scot McRoberts, executive director, VA Council of CEOs

Each quarter the Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business partner to take the pulse of top executives in the region through a comprehensive Virginia CEO Economic Outlook Survey.

The first quarter 2021 CEO Economic Outlook survey finds that expectations over the next six months for sales, capital spending, and employment all improved compared with expectations at the end of Q4 2020. 

VA Council of CEOs and Robins School of Business Historical Index Report

YEARQ1Q2Q3Q4
2021102.80
2020 -18.73*50.4365.2069.20
2019100.594.1386.33101.47
201894.6092.73104.3097.97
2017108.97* 103.6399.17106.30
2016102.0089.0089.67107.37
201593.9093.4299.8092.67
201486.0788.7196.1095.92
201386.4091.6092.5389.57
201294.1081.1381.1777.57
201185.6374.1781.1788.63
201081.3394.4792.27
*historic high/low
VACEOs Economic Outlook Graph by Quarter

Says Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs, “The sharp V-shape of the data is consistent with what I am seeing in the small and mid-sized businesses with whom we work.” Adding, “The federal stimulus has certainly done its job. The main challenge for these CEOs now is acquiring the workforce to support this rapid recovery and growth.”

“The survey results suggest that CEOs are very optimistic about the next six months,” said Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School. Boulger administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. He adds, “The index has risen significantly (103.0% versus 69.2% last quarter). This increase returns the index to the pre-pandemic level of hovering around 100 since early 2017.”

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: SALES, CAPITAL SPENDING, HIRING, AND VACCINATIONS


Taken as a whole, the results pertaining to sales, capital spending, and employment produce a significant improvement in economic outlook over results from the end of Q4 2020.  

In addition to the survey questions regarding sales, capital spending, and employment, the survey asked CEOs to express their plans, if any, with regard to requiring employees to be vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to returning to work in person now or in the future. Their response regarding required vaccinations was as follows:

  • Yes (will require vaccination): 8%
  • No (will NOT require vaccination): 61%
  • Unclear at this time whether vaccination will be required: 31%

Additionally, CEOs were asked what aspects of current business protocols (working from home, virtual meetings, hiring without in-person interviews) they see continuing post pandemic in a way that is advantageous to their business.

Many indicated that the flexibility to conduct internal and client meetings virtually was both a time saver and resulted in economic savings and will likely continue. A few indicated new benefits such as “leveling the playing field” against larger competitors with deeper pockets as well as being able to attract talent that may not live in the Richmond area. One CEO mentioned that there was a concern that it was becoming more difficult to maintain a common company culture with remote work.

To summarize, CEOs predictions over the next six months include:

SALES EXPECTATIONS

  • 72 percent expect an increase in sales 
  • 5 percent expected sales to be “lower”
  • 21 percent expect no change

REVENUE (compared to pre-COVID expectations)

  • 33 percent reported reported Q1 2021 revenue as “much better than expected”
  • 10 percent reported Q1 2021 revenue as “much worse than expected”
  • 57 percent reporting revenue “about as expected”

CAPITAL SPENDING EXPECTATIONS

  • 44 percent expect capital spending to increase (compared with 25% last quarter)
  • 11 percent expect capital spending to decrease
  • 44 percent expect capital spending to remain flat  

EMPLOYMENT EXPECTATIONS

  • 64 percent expect employment to increase
  • 33 precent expect employment to remain flat
  • 3 percent expect employment to fall  

SURVEY SAMPLE

  • 61 CEOs responded to the survey, which was administered April 8-15, 2021 
  • Multiple industries are represented in the sample, including professional services, health care, information technology, and finance
  • The average company revenue (most recent 12-month period): $18 million
  • The average employment count: 71

The following survey results from the last quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021 show projections for the next six months for sales, capital spending, and employment.

VA Council of CEOs and Robins School of Business Q1 2021 Outlook Survey


ABOUT THE ECONOMIC SURVEY

The Robins School and VACEOs jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which regularly asks about expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, plus other relevant issues, helping Virginia companies anticipate business conditions and plan for growth. 

The Robins School adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally. Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School, administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. The survey has been administered quarterly since 2010.


About Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs)

Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) is a nonprofit organization connecting CEOs for learning and growth. Formed more than 20 years ago, Member benefits include placement in a peer roundtable group and access to a thought leader network, and a robust program of events for learning and growth. This is not a networking group, but rather a group of CEO peers who are invested in the success of each Member. To qualify for membership CEOs must run a business with $1M+ revenue and 5+FTEs. Learn more at www.vaceos.org.

About Robins School of Business

The Robins School of Business is the only fully-accredited, highly-ranked undergraduate business school that also is part of a highly-ranked liberal arts university. U.S. News ranks the Robins School’s MBA program #2 in Virginia. The school’s executive education division offers customized training and consulting to a wide variety of businesses



Posted by Staff at 9:36 am
Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Economic Report: Survey Results Continues to Improve During Q4

CEOs Share Expectations About Timing of Returning to ‘Normal’ Business Practices


Read Richmond Times-Dispatch coverage >

Read Virginian-Pilot coverage >

 

Each quarter the Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business partner to take the pulse of top executives in the region through a comprehensive Virginia CEO Economic Outlook Survey.

The fourth quarter 2020 CEO Economic Outlook survey finds that expectations over the next six months for capital spending and employment improved compared with expectations at the end of Q3, while expectations of sales growth decreased somewhat on a percentage basis.

Economic Index Historical Data (Jan 2021)

YearQuarter 1Quarter 2Quarter 3Quarter 4
202050.4365.2069.2
2020 (May 27)26.2
2020 (April 27)-1.33
2020-18.73 (historic low)
2019100.594.1386.33101.47
201894.6092.73104.3097.97
2017108.97 (historic high)103.6399.17106.3
2016102.0089.0089.67107.37
201593.9093.4299.8092.67
201486.07

88.7196.1095.92
201386.4091.6092.5389.57
201294.1081.1381.1777.57
201185.6374.1781.1788.63
201081.3394.4792.27

Says Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs, “CEOs responded to this survey in the week following the attack on the U.S. Capitol, and as news broke that Virginia’s vaccine rollout was moving more slowly than expected.” Adding, “The index from this survey is still five points lower than at any point in the ten years before the pandemic. The CEOs I know are working hard to overcome in these challenging times and to save jobs, but most anticipate that the next six months will continue to be difficult.”

“The survey results suggest a continued positive outlook over the next six months,” said Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School. Boulger administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. He adds, “The index, which consists of an average of Virginia Council of CEO members’ expectations with respect to sales, capital spending, and employment, continues to rise slightly (69.2 versus 65.2 last quarter) at this difficult time. Although the incremental increase is not large, it reflects an ongoing positive sentiment.”

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: SALES, CAPITAL SPENDING, HIRING,  AND MORE

Taken as a whole, the results pertaining to sales, capital spending, and employment produce a small improvement in economic outlook over results from the end of Q3.

In addition to the survey questions regarding sales, capital spending and employment, the survey asked CEOs to express their expectations with regard to the timing of returning to “normal” business practices such as no need for masks, working largely in person, …  their responses were as follows:

Summer 2021 – 17 percent
Late 2021 – 43 percent
Sometime in 2022 – 29 percent
No expectation to return to “Normal” – 10 percent

Additionally, CEOs were asked what aspects of our current business protocols (working from home, Zoom meetings, hiring without in person meetings, …) do they see continuing post pandemic.  The overwhelming responses were a continuation of working from home for some workers/types of work and the use of Zoom or similar technology for what had previously required in person meetings.

“The variation in expectations for a return to normal highlights the continued uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and its impact on businesses,” said Mickey Quiñones, dean of the Robins School. “It is interesting that some of the adaptations that have become widespread, such as Zoom meetings, will likely continue to influence the way we conduct business well into the future.”

To summarize, CEOs predictions over the next six months include:

SALES EXPECTATIONS

  • 46 percent expect an increase in sales
  • 23 percent expected sales to be “Lower”
  • 27 percent indicated they expected no change

REVENUE

  • 33 percent reported Q4 revenue as “much better than expected” (compared to expectations at end of Q1)
  • 25 percent reported Q4 revenue as “much worse than expected”
  • 42 percent reporting revenue “about as expected”

CAPITAL SPENDING EXPECTATIONS

  • 26 percent of respondents expect capital spending to decrease (compared to 36 percent last quarter)
  • 24 percent expect capital spending to increase
  • 49 percent expect capital spending to remain flat

EMPLOYMENT EXPECTATIONS

  • 36 percent expect employment to remain flat
  • 52 precent expect employment to increase
  • 12 percent expect employment to fall

SURVEY SAMPLE

  • 70 CEOs responded to the survey, which was administered January 11 – 15, 2020
  • Multiple industries are represented in the sample, including construction, manufacturing, finance and insurance and retail
  • The average company revenue (most recent 12-month period): $14.4 million
  • The average employment count: 388

The data for the last four years/sixteen quarters is depicted graphically below.  As can be seen, the index has hovered around a value of 100 from 2017 to 2019 prior to the pandemic. After a plunge in Q1 2020, it has rebounded to values in the sixties with a slight positive trend. 

 


ABOUT THE ECONOMIC SURVEY

The Robins School and VACEOs jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which regularly asks about expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, plus other relevant issues, helping Virginia companies anticipate business conditions and plan for growth.

The Robins School adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally. Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School, administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. The survey has been administered quarterly since 2010.

ABOUT VIRGINIA COUNCIL OF CEOs

Virginia Council of CEOs is a nonprofit organization connecting CEOs for learning and growth. Formed more than 20 years ago, Member benefits include placement in a peer roundtable group and access to a thought leader network and a robust program of events for learning and growth. This is not a networking group, but rather a group of CEO peers who are invested in the success of each Member. Learn more at www.vaceos.org.

ABOUT ROBINS SCHOOL OF BUSINESS

The Robins School of Business is the only fully accredited, highly ranked undergraduate business school that also is part of a highly ranked liberal arts university. U.S. News ranks the Robins School’s MBA program #2 in Virginia. The school’s executive education division offers customized training and consulting to a wide variety of businesses.

Posted by Staff at 10:24 am
Monday, October 19, 2020

Virginia Economic Outlook Continues to Improve During Q3

Each quarter the Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business partner to take the pulse of top executives in the region through a comprehensive Virginia CEO Economic Outlook Survey. 

The third quarter 2020 CEO Economic Outlook survey finds that expectations over the next six months for sales and employment all improved compared with expectations at the end of Q2 while expectations of capital spending decreased somewhat.

Read Richmond Times-Dispatch coverage >

Economic Index Historical Data (OCT 2020)

YearQuarter 1Quarter 2Quarter 3Quarter 4
202050.4365.20
2020 (May 27)26.2
2020 (April 27)-1.33
2020-18.73 (historic low)
2019100.594.1386.33101.47
201894.6092.73104.3097.97
2017108.97 (historic high)103.6399.17106.3
2016102.0089.0089.67107.37
201593.9093.4299.8092.67
201486.07

88.7196.1095.92
201386.4091.6092.5389.57
201294.1081.1381.1777.57
201185.6374.1781.1788.63
201081.3394.4792.27

Says Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs, “The data reflects what I am hearing from small business CEOs. The pace of recovery is slowing. The lack of another round of stimulus from Congress seem to be a contributor, along with the crippling effects of the pandemic on certain sectors of the economy.”

“The survey results continue to suggest a positive outlook over the next six months,” said Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School. Boulger administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. He adds, “The Index, which consists of an average of Virginia Council of CEO members expectations with respect to sales, capital spending and employment, continues to rise (65.2 versus 50.4 last quarter) at this difficult time.”

“The economic climate appears to have settled into a steady growth scenario, which should aid business leaders in making decisions going forward,” said Mickey Quiñones, dean of the Robins School. “However, with uncertainties surrounding the pandemic and future government stimulus, we are clearly not out of the woods yet.”

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: SALES, CAPITAL SPENDING, HIRING

The 2020 third quarter survey found that, taken as a whole, the results pertaining to sales, capital spending, and employment produce an improvement in economic outlook over results from the end of Q2. To summarize, CEOs predictions over the next six months include:

SALES EXPECTATIONS

  • 61 percent expect an increase in sales 
  • 23 percent expected sales to be “Lower”

 

CAPITAL SPENDING EXPECTATIONS

  • 25 percent of respondents expect capital spending to decrease
  • 14 percent expect capital spending to increase
  • 60 percent expect capital spending to remain flat

EMPLOYMENT EXPECTATIONS

  • 43 percent expect employment to remain flat
  • 40 precent expect employment to increase
  • 17 percent expect employment to fall  
  • 80 percent of CEOs expect to continue to operate without significant layoffs
  • 13 percent expect layoffs, while about 6% are uncertain at this time

SURVEY SAMPLE

  • 63 CEOs responded to the survey, which was administered September 28 – October 5, 2020 
  • Multiple industries are represented in the sample, including construction, manufacturing, finance and insurance and retail
  • The average company revenue (most recent 12-month period): $15.6 million
  • The average employment count: 71

READ COMPLETE ECONOMIC SURVEY RESULTS
The Robins School and VACEOs jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which regularly asks about expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, plus other relevant issues, helping Virginia companies anticipate business conditions and plan for growth.

The Robins School adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally. Rich Boulger, associate dean at the Robins School, administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. The survey has been administered quarterly since 2010.

REQUEST RESULTS
The Council continues to expand the survey beyond its members, offering any area business owners whose companies gross at least $1 million in annual revenue the opportunity to participate. If enough businesses participate, the Council will provide survey results by industry. Participation is free, and all participants will receive copies of the survey data.

Business owners and CEOs who would like to participate in the next survey should contact Scot McRoberts at smcroberts@vaceos.org.

ABOUT VIRGINIA COUNCIL OF CEOs
The Virginia Council of CEOs is a nonprofit association whose mission is to connect the CEOs of small and mid-sized businesses for learning and growth. The Council is led by a volunteer board of directors, advisory board and a small staff. Currently, there are more than 200 CEO members, mainly in Richmond and Charlottesville. Learn more at www.vaceos.org.

ABOUT ROBINS SCHOOL OF BUSINESS

The Robins School of Business is the only fully accredited, highly-ranked undergraduate business school that also is part of a highly-ranked liberal arts university. U.S. News ranks the Robins School’s MBA program #35 in the country. The school’s executive education division offers open enrollment courses and customized leadership development, training and consulting to area businesses.

Posted by Staff at 10:16 am
Monday, July 13, 2020

As Virginia Moves into Phase 3, Economic Outlook Improves

For the first time since December, more CEOs expect sales to increase over the next six months than expect sales to fall.

Read Richmond-Times coverage >

Each quarter the Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business partner to take the pulse of top executives in the region through a comprehensive Virginia CEO Economic Outlook Survey. 

The third edition of this special survey found finds that expectations over the next six months for sales, capital spending, and employment all improved compared with expectations at the end of May. 

More than half of CEOs (57 percent) indicated that compared with their expectations for their businesses at the end of May, the last month has been “about as expected.” More than 28 percent reported it to be “much better than expected,” while about 15 percent reported “much worse than expected.”

Economic Index Historical Data

YearQuarter 1Quarter 2Quarter 3Quarter 4
202050.43
2020 (May 27)26.2
2020 (April 27)-1.33
2020-18.73 (historic low)
2019100.594.1386.33101.47
201894.6092.73104.3097.97
2017108.97 (historic high)103.6399.17106.3
2016102.0089.0089.67107.37
201593.9093.4299.8092.67
201486.07

88.7196.1095.92
201386.4091.6092.5389.57
201294.1081.1381.1777.57
201185.6374.1781.1788.63
201081.3394.4792.27

“The dramatic rebound of this index, from minus 18 to plus 54, reflects the nature of these entrepreneurs. CEOs of small and mid-sized Virginia businesses have been resilient and creative in adapting to a tremendously difficult business environment,” says Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs. Adding, “We certainly are not out of the woods yet, but these data are a good sign.”

“Survey results over the past four months indicate a positive and steady increase in economic outlook.” said said Randy Raggio, Associate Dean at the Robins School of Business. Raggio administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. He adds, “With the move to Phase 3 on July 1, companies will have more opportunity to participate in the recovery.”

“These positive results are very welcome news at a time when stress from the continuing uncertainty is taking a toll on employees and business owners,” said Mickey Quiñones, dean of the Robins School. Adding, “They show that the hard work and sacrifices being made by many are making a difference in the performance of Virginia businesses.”

CEOS REPORT ON LAYOFFS AND WORK-FROM-HOME PRODUCTIVITY AND REOPENING TIMETABLE

  • More than 78 percent expect to continue to operate without significant layoffs. Only about 10 percent expect significant layoffs, while about 11 percent are uncertain at this time.  
  • About 54 percent of CEOs whose workforce has shifted to work-from-home report that productivity is “about the same.” A little more than 8 percent rate it “much better,” while about 15 percent rate it “much worse.”
  • More than 40 percent expect that compared with their workforce in January, more employees will work from home after the crisis is over, while about 45 percent expect “about the same” number will work from home.    
  • Although more than 32 percent of CEOs indicate that Virginia’s timetable for reopening the state is “about right,” more than 16 percent find it “a little too slow” and about 24 percent rate it “way too slow.” About 24 percent rate it “a little too fast,” and less than 3 percent rate it “way too fast.”    

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: SALES, CAPITAL SPENDING, HIRING

This month found that executives’ expectations pertaining to sales, capital spending, and employment represent improvements in economic outlook over results from the end of May.

 

2020 Q2 Economic Outlook Survey by VA Council of CEOs and Robins School of Business

To summarize, CEOs predictions over the next six months at the end of June include:

  • 43.2 percent of CEOs expect sales to increase over the next six months and 17.6 percent expect double-digit increases. But nearly 38 percent expect sales to decline, and 20.3 percent expect a double-digit decline. Roughly 19 percent expect sales to remain flat.  
  • Nearly 37 percent of CEOs expect capital spending to decrease over the next six months (compared with 52 percent last month), while more than 20 percent expect capital spending to increase. More than 43 percent expect capital spending to remain flat.  
  • More than half (52.7 percent) of respondent CEOs expect employment to remain flat over the next six months. But nearly 30 percent expect employment to increase.  Almost 18 percent expect employment to fall.
  • Eighty-two CEOs responded to the survey, which was administered June 23 – 28.
  • Multiple industries are represented in the sample, including construction, manufacturing, finance and insurance and retail.
  • The average company revenue (most recent 12-month period): $12.8 million.
  • The average employment count: 53.

READ COMPLETE ECONOMIC SURVEY RESULTS

The Robins School and VACEOs jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which regularly asks about expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, plus other relevant issues, helping Virginia companies anticipate business conditions and plan for growth. 

The Robins School adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally. Randy Raggio, associate dean at the Robins School, administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. The survey has been administered quarterly since 2010.

Read Richmond-Times coverage >

REQUEST RESULTS

The Council continues to expand the survey beyond its members, offering any area business owners whose companies gross at least $1 million in annual revenue the opportunity to participate. If enough businesses participate, the Council will provide survey results by industry. Participation is free, and all participants will receive copies of the survey data.

Business owners and CEOs who would like to participate in the next survey should contact Scot McRoberts at smcroberts@vaceos.org.

ABOUT VIRGINIA COUNCIL OF CEOs

The Virginia Council of CEOs is a nonprofit association whose mission is to connect the CEOs of small and mid-sized businesses for learning and growth. The Council is led by a volunteer board of directors, advisory board and a small staff. Currently, there are more than 200 CEO members, mainly in Richmond and Charlottesville. Learn more at www.vaceos.org.

ABOUT ROBINS SCHOOL OF BUSINESS

The Robins School of Business is  the only fully accredited, highly-ranked undergraduate business school that also is part of a highly-ranked liberal arts university. U.S. News ranks the Robins School’s MBA program #2 in Virginia. The school’s executive education division offers customized training and consulting to area businesses.

Posted by Staff at 7:02 am
Labels: , ,
Friday, June 12, 2020

Economic Survey Continues to Improve But CEOs Want Faster Action

Although COVID-19 has forced many employees to work from home, CEOs report that productivity is “about the same”.

 

Read Richmond Times-Dispatch coverage >

 

Each quarter the Virginia Council of CEOs (VACEOs) and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business partner to take the pulse of top executives in the region through a comprehensive Virginia CEO Economic Outlook Survey. 


For the first time ever, the University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business and the Virginia Council of CEOs conducted a follow-up to their quarterly CEO Economic Outlook Survey to determine how CEO sentiment had changed after dealing with COVID-19 for another month.  


The second edition of this special survey found that CEO sentiment has continued to improve after dealing with COVID-19 for another month, but CEOs are not happy with the pace of reopening the state.

Overall expectations for sales, capital spending, and employment over the next six months all increased compared to expectations at the end of April. Fifty-eight percent of CEOs reported that compared with their expectations for their businesses at the end of April, the last month had been “about as expected.” Nearly 28% reported it to be “much better than expected,” while about 14% reported “much worse than expected.”

Economic Index Historical Data (May 27, 2020)

YearQuarter 1Quarter 2Quarter 3Quarter 4
May 27, 202026.2
April 27, 2020-1.33
2020-18.73 (historic low)
2019100.594.1386.33101.47
201894.6092.73104.3097.97
2017108.97 (historic high)103.6399.17106.3
2016102.0089.0089.67107.37
201593.9093.4299.8092.67
201486.07

88.7196.1095.92
201386.4091.6092.5389.57
201294.1081.1381.1777.57
201185.6374.1781.1788.63
201081.3394.4792.27

Says Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs, “I’m relieved to see that small business CEOs feel like the worst is over, and that optimism is ticking up slightly. I think it is also a good sign that few of these CEOs have resorted to layoffs, indicating a belief that business will rebound sooner, rather than later.”

“Despite the uncertainty that remains around future policies, we see a gradual increase in CEO sentiment,” said Randy Raggio, Associate Dean at the Robins School of Business. Raggio administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. He adds,  “These monthly surveys have given us a unique look at how sentiment has inched upwards as the situation has begun to stabilize.”  

Mickey Quiñones, Dean of the Robins School of Business, says, “As companies begin the slow climb out of this steep downturn, they will have to draw upon the ingenuity and skill of their employees to discover new ways of doing business.”

CEOS REPORT ON STATE OF OPERATIONS AND WORK-FROM-HOME PRODUCTIVITY

  • More than 67 percent expect to continue to operate without significant layoffs. (Only 19% expect significant layoffs, while about 14% are uncertain at this time.)
  • Seventy-three percent of CEOs whose workforce has shifted to work-from-home report that productivity is “about the same.” Twelve percent rate it “much better,” while 15% rate it “much worse.”  And 42% expect that compared with their workforce in January, more employees will work from home after the crisis is over.  
  • Although nearly 37% of CEOs indicate that Virginia’s timetable for reopening the state is “about right,” nearly half find it “a little too slow” (17%) or “way too slow” (30.4%).  About 11% rate it “a little too fast,” and only 5% rate it “way too fast.”    

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: SALES, CAPITAL SPENDING, HIRING

This month found that executives’ expectations for sales, hiring and employment improved slightly over last month. To summarize, CEOs predictions over the next six months include:

  • 56.1 percent expect sales to be lower over the next six months (an improvement from 77% last month). 42.7 percent expect the decline to be more than 10 percentage points (compared 66 percent). 
  • About 32 percent expect sales to increase (vs. 13 percent), while 12.2 percent expect sales to remain flat (vs. 10 percent).  
  • About 52 percent of CEOs expect capital spending to decrease (compared with 73 percent last month)
  • Nearly 10 percent expect capital spending to increase over the next six months (no change).
  • More than 38 percent expect capital spending to remain flat (vs. 17 percent).  
  • Twenty-seven percent of respondent CEOs expect employment to decrease over the next six months (down from 37 percent last month).
  • 51 percent expect employment to remain flat (vs. 53 percent), and 22 percent expect an increase in employment (vs. 10 percent).  
  • 82 CEOs responded to the survey, which was administered May 20-22. 
  • Multiple industries are represented in the sample, including construction, manufacturing, finance, insurance, and retail.
  • The average company whose CEO responded to this survey had about $21 million in revenue for the most recent 12-month period.
  • The average employment was about 47.

READ COMPLETE ECONOMIC SURVEY RESULTS

The Robins School and VACEOs jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which regularly asks about expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, plus other relevant issues, helping Virginia companies anticipate business conditions and plan for growth.

The Robins School adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally. Randy Raggio, associate dean at the Robins School, administers the survey and collects the responses each quarter. The survey has been administered quarterly since 2010.

Read Richmond Times-Dispatch coverage >

REQUEST RESULTS

The Council continues to expand the survey beyond its members, offering any area business owners whose companies gross at least $1 million in annual revenue the opportunity to participate. If enough businesses participate, the Council will provide survey results by industry. Participation is free, and all participants will receive copies of the survey data.

Business owners and CEOs who would like to participate in the next survey should contact Scot McRoberts at smcroberts@vaceos.org.

 

ABOUT VIRGINIA COUNCIL OF CEOs

The Virginia Council of CEOs is a nonprofit association whose mission is to connect the CEOs of small and mid-sized businesses for learning and growth. The Council is led by a volunteer board of directors, advisory board and a small staff. Currently, there are more than 200 CEO members, mainly in Richmond and Charlottesville. Learn more at www.vaceos.org.

 

ABOUT ROBINS SCHOOL OF BUSINESS

The Robins School of Business is the only fully accredited, highly-ranked undergraduate business school that also is part of a highly-ranked liberal arts university. U.S. News ranks the Robins School’s MBA program #35 in the country. The school’s executive education division offers open enrollment courses and customized leadership development, training and consulting to area businesses.

Posted by Staff at 8:23 am