UK Businesses More Focused as Economic Recovery Enables Growth

Barometer on Change report reveals 69% of fast-growth organisations expecting growth of 6% in the next three years, but slower growth companies still focused on cost reduction

The third annual Barometer on Change report, commissioned by consultancy firm Moorhouse and released last week, revealed that UK businesses are becoming increasingly focused as they prepare to capitalise on the recovering economy to ramp up growth.

The research was conducted with 200 board members who are responsible for change initiatives within large UK multinationals and public companies.

38% of participants claimed they were focused on just one single market differentiator compared with just 9% in 2013 and 52% stated that they now had “extremely clear plans” for their company’s future.

Organisations are also increasingly positive about future growth, with 69% expecting growth of at least 6% over the next three years, in comparison with just over half in 2013.

However whilst the outlook for high growth businesses was positive (those that grew by more than 5% in the last year), lower growth companies (that grew by less than 5%) had less confidence in their strategy.

Only 35% of slower growth businesses felt their strategy was “extremely clear” and 32% admitted they were still more focused on cost reduction, rather than investing in growth programmes.

Managing director of Moorhouse, Stephen Vinall, commented:

“Trying to be all things to all people is no longer seen as a viable or compelling strategy. As confidence in the economy grows, the smart organisations are shifting to a more focused portfolio of products and services.”

“The year-on-year data in this year’s Barometer show that organisations experiencing lower growth rates and predicting a less positive outlook are stuck in a vicious cycle of poor performance…unless low performing organisations rebalance their portfolio of change initiatives and broaden their focus beyond cost cutting alone, they risk being permanently left behind.”

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