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The 2014 Accenture-Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) research study reveals that US economy takes a cautious approach to growth after a period of five turbulent years.
Nearly eight in 10 C-suite executives we surveyed at large companies in the United States are optimistic about the growth prospects of their companies and seven in 10 feel the same about the country’s economy. The industry analysts also predict this economic recovery and accelerated growth for the US companies in the coming years.
However, our research data also shows that US companies’ future action plans suggest an underlying caution that may not match their growth aspirations—particularly when it comes to innovation. This caution is inconsistent with C-suite executives we surveyed outside the United States, and could potentially impact the growth that US companies hope to see in the future.
Download the report to know why the disconnect between hopes and actions may spell disappointment for US companies seeking growth.
Read the full report for global survey results.
US business leaders express confidence in growth prospects for 2014, despite the economic risk factors:
82 percent of the surveyed US executives anticipate a moderate or significant increase in revenues in the next 12 months, and 70 percent expect to boost profits in the same timeframe.
75 percent of the surveyed US executives said they will continue to invest in their home market—a largely mature and slow-growing economy.
45 percent of the surveyed US executives confirmed that digital technologies support at least 50 percent of their major business processes.
87 percent of the surveyed US executives plan to increase investments in research and development. And for many of these companies, some proportion of that investment will involve digital technologies.
68 percent of the surveyed US executives said that their investments in digital technologies are primarily focused on process efficiencies and cost reduction, while just 25 percent said they are geared toward helping the company reach customers.
72 percent of the surveyed US executives plan to increase their investment in human capital assets in the form of recruitment, retention, training and skills development.
Download the report for detailed survey findings.
We believe that the US companies need to focus on two key areas for driving robust and sustained growth. These include:
Reality check: While nearly eight in 10 US respondents said they are committed to innovation, our study reveals that they are not truly innovating in ways that will help them grow more strongly in the future. They are investing more to do the same things better such as improving existing processes, making employees more productive and efficient, and keeping existing customers happy.
What US companies must do: Look at creating new business models, opening new sales channels and gaining new customers to support future growth strategies.
Harnessing the power of digital
Reality check: On the digital front we see the US companies are leveraging digital technologies primarily to become more efficient. This way, they could be missing out on the power of digital to create and serve new markets with entirely new offerings.
What US companies must do: Rebalance the focus of their investments in digital technologies to compete and grow effectively.
March 7, 2014
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