Staffordshire Chambers receives record response rate for Quarterly Economic Survey

Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce is delighted to announce that we have received our highest-ever response rate for a Quarterly Economic Survey (QES).

The record level of participation reflects the strong engagement of businesses in Staffordshire – with over 330 firms having their say on the current challenges that they are facing.

While responses indicate a slight decline in sales, customer or booking numbers, and advance bookings, as well as a decrease in workforce growth over the past and upcoming three months, they also highlight critical areas of concern and opportunity.

Key findings from the survey include:

  • Price Expectations: An increase in respondents expecting to raise prices in the future, coupled with a slight drop in those anticipating turnover growth.
  • Cost Pressures: Labour costs and other overheads are the top pressures driving potential price increases, with energy prices and supply costs being major concerns compared to three months ago.
  • Positive Developments: Growth in overseas sales, customers, and bookings, alongside increased investments in plant, machinery, capital, and training over the past three months. Additionally, more respondents expect profitability to rise over the next 12 months.

Read the findings in full via Daily Focus, here.

Declan Riddell, Policy Adviser at Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce, said: “We would like to thank all of the businesses that took the time to complete the latest QES survey and for helping us to set a new record for number of responses.

“The QES is a vital tool for us to understand the economic landscape, feeding into our lobbying work, as well as being reported back to organisations including the Bank of England and The HM Treasury.

“Responses from the survey suggest that our businesses are still battling economic headwinds.

“The competition for skills remains strong, and the high-cost pressures of wages and interest rates are ongoing challenges. The actual cost of doing business continues to be a significant issue.”

He added: “Achieving our highest-ever response rate for the QES is a milestone, and we extend our sincere thanks to everyone who participated. Your input is invaluable in shaping our understanding and advocacy efforts.”

All 52 UK Chambers of Commerce conduct the QES in their respective regions.

The findings, widely recognised as a valuable source of information about economic performance, are shared with the British Chambers of Commerce, government departments including HM Treasury and the Cabinet Office, as well as the Bank of England.