Manufacturing business growth has continued to rise over the past year, but at a much slower rate than the previous 12 months, according to a recent study by Epicor.
The Global Growth Index by Epicor Software Corporation also noted that despite challenging market conditions and the difficulty in recruiting and retaining skilled staff, there has been a marginal one percent rise in the number of businesses reporting growth.
For those companies who have experienced growth, maintaining it hasn’t been easy over the past year. Forty-two percent admit it has been challenging, whilst a fifth (22 percent) have found it stressful.
Forty percent of businesses cite market conditions as having a negative impact on growth, and 23 percent feel that staff skills and experience have also played a detrimental part in maintaining growth.
Political volatility and uncertainty also continue to be a common cause for concern across the globe. Thirty-two percent of respondents cited the China-US trade dispute as likely to have a negative impact on future business growth. A quarter of businesses (24 percent) stated that the uncertainty surrounding Brexit is also still a big threat.
“The manufacturing industry plays an integral role in our global economy and people forget that it is responsible for delivering important products we use every day,” said Epicor CEO, Steve Murphy. “As such, the health of the manufacturing industry is something we should all be concerned about. While it’s good news to see that growth in this industry is still taking place, we need to keep a close eye on what factors are contributing to this growth and what factors are causing a lag. The information in the Global Growth Index empowers businesses so they can make strategic plans that will best position them for the future.”
Now in its third year, the Epicor Global Growth Index is designed to measure the state of worldwide business growth within the manufacturing industry. The Index tracks the performance of businesses—year on year—within 13 territories across a number of key indicators, including turnover, profits, headcount, and product range. Compared to last year’s results, the Growth Index rose by one percent. This is down from the 3.7 percent in the previous 12-month period.