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Richmond Events' Business Panel - Economic Outlook


Headline findings include:

  • Only 3% of the panel expect the economy to grow significantly over the next 12 months. However, just over half expect it to have shown some signs of growth (marginally).   
  • The figures for 3 years’ time are much more optimistic.  18% of the panel expect the economy to have grown significantly whilst a further 64% expect it to have grown marginally. Only 2% expect it to shrink a little.  
  • The highest proportion of the panel have either remained at the same level or will increase headcount this year.  A further ¼ have reduced headcount and may do so again whilst 11% have reduced headcount and don’t expect to do so again. 
  • 51% of the panel feel their revenues will increase over the next 12 months, whereas 45% feel their profits will do likewise.  For this to be correct then it would suggest that organizations are going to have to find those profits from elsewhere; reduced headcount, tighter cash flow and general cost cutting are all likely to figure prominently. 
  • 20% expect to see their budget increase compared to 30% who expect it to see it go the other way.  The rest, 50%, don’t see it changing.
  • 10% of organizations expect to move some part of their business outside the US over the next 2 years.  The most popular destinations are Canada and South / Central America.
  • There is no overwhelming satisfaction with the Administration’s handling of the economy.  However the number thinking it’s been very good has improved from last year, from 3% to 11%.  Those thinking it’s been acceptable has fallen slightly to 29%.
View full report http://revents.info/l/6qF

Richmond Events' Business Panel Report - Social Media


Headline findings include:
  • 45% of organizations do not currently spend any budget on social media. Of those that do the average percentage of departmental budget spend is 4.3%.
  • Over half the panel are likely to increase their spend on social media, 46% moderately and 9% drastically.
  • LinkedIn is the most popular social media platform for both personal use (in their role) as well being used by their organization. Over 80% of the panel use it within their role, whilst 69% of organizations use it.
  • Only 5% of organizations have strict ROI measurement tools in place for social media. Almost two thirds don’t measure ROI at all.
  • LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube are viewed as the most effective social media channels.
  • The most popular areas for employing social media within organizations are towards brand promotion, PR & communications and customer engagement. These are followed by general marketing and employee recruitment.
  • In almost two thirds of organizations the marketing department is responsible for social media content.
  • Organizations report on average 6% of their employees use social media as part of their role.
For full report http://revents.info/l/6px

Richmond Events' Business Panel - Internal Communications


Headline findings include:
  • Only 7% of the panel describe their organization’s internal communications as excellent, and 45% as good. 42% feel they’re a mixed bag, some clearly good and some less so.
  • There are 3 primary purposes for an organization’s internal communications: to build support for the organization’s vision, (for) staff motivation / employee engagement and to communicate senior management decisions and viewpoints.  
  • Just over ½ of the panel feels internal communications are essential for keeping their whole organization up to speed with what’s going on.  This is followed by 46% who believe it’s a key motivator in terms of employee engagement.
  • It is further reassuring that only 6% feel internal communications are not that useful and that they can find out what they need by talking to clients.
  • It may be considered somewhat of a surprise that the Comms department doesn’t lead the way in terms of being responsible for an organization’s internal communications, instead 37% of the panel saying it ‘depends on what’s being said’.  The communications department is in 2nd place with 1 in 4 of the panel saying this is the case. 
  • The most popular channels for organizations to communicate with its employees are through email and via the intranet.  These are followed by live events and conferences and the more traditional method of in person; predominately through line managers. 
  • At the other end of the scale only 2% of organizations use LinkedIn and 5% twitter, whilst not a single organization uses YouTube.
  • The majority of the panel are mainly satisfied with the ease in which they can locate information; 18% saying it’s easy and a further 60% saying not too bad.
  • Over two thirds of the panel agree with the statement that social media enables them to reach more people more quickly than before.  A further ¼ are unsure, whereas 6% disagree.
  • Just less than ½ the panel engage with their organization’s internal communications on a daily basis, 30% engage weekly and a further 23% engage whenever they have time.

For full report http://revents.info/l/6ql

Richmond Events' Business Panel Report - Attitudes to Suppliers


Headline findings include:
  • 6% of the panel will meet over 50 potential new suppliers per year though none will appoint this many. 
  • On average the panel talk to 18 potential suppliers over the course of a year.  They then appoint on average 5 new suppliers per year – i.e. just over 1 in 4 (or 28%) of the companies they meet.   
  • The average number of suppliers that the panel employs over the course of a typical year is 28.  This can be further broken down to 23 (82%) existing and 5 (18%) new.
  • Only a minority of companies always employ a formal tender process or a short list system when appointing new suppliers.
  • In terms of input from other departments during the appointing of new suppliers, procurement are most likely to be involved, finance and legal in some cases and HR less so.
  • The 2 top ways of sourcing potential new suppliers are recommendations / word of mouth and through meeting at a conference. 
  • No surprise that in this day and age price is the number one factor the panel looks for when compiling a shortlist of suppliers. This is closely followed by product quality and flexibility.
  • 82% of the panel have asked some of their suppliers to re-quote their prices over the last few years, with the average number they’ve asked being 30%.
  • However the majority of the panel has not changed their payment terms
  • Over half of the panel has brought work back previously outsourced work in house.  Of those that have done so the average amount (they’ve brought back) is 13%.
  • The majority of the panel is quite prepared to ask suppliers to re-quote in order to match a lower price, with only 6% saying they would never do so.
For full report http://revents.info/l/6qk

Richmond Events' Business Panel - Brand Report


  • Marketing is the department primarily responsible for developing the brand within 71% of organizations, with a further 18% leaving responsibility to the MD/CEO.
  • In terms of influence over the brand, marketing leads the way with 44%, followed by sales 39% and the MD/CEO 15%. 15% of the panel feel all departments have equal influence over an organization’s brand.
  • 100% of the panel feel brand reputation is very important to their organization, however only 66% know they measure it.
  • Of those that do, the most popular measurement tools are customer focus groups 46%, on-going brand tracking research 38%, competitor analysis 36%.
  • The panel feels 40% of their department have high engagement levels with the brand, compared to 36% of the wider organization and 37% of their customers. It may be considered slightly worrying that the figure is higher for customer engagement than it is for their colleagues in other departments.
  • The panel also feel 24% of their department have low engagement levels for their brand, as opposed to only 19% of their customers. A potential problem?
  • 61% of the panel feel there is a slight mismatch between what their customers and what their employees think of their brand. However 76% feel their own perception of their brand is similar to their customers’ perception.
  • In terms of the importance of their organization’s brand reputation to the panel personally, 24% say it’s essential - they’ll only work for an organization with a strong brand, whereas 59% say it’s very important – a key factor as to where they work.
For full report http://revents.info/l/6qj

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