OnForce Confidence Index Reveals Economic Optimism, Stabilizing Rates, in IT Field Services In Second Quarterly OnForce Confidence Index, Technicians Move Toward a More Positive Economic Perception

BOSTON, Jan. 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The business outlook among the country's top independent IT field technicians is dramatically improving for 2012, with a 29 percent increase in positive perception. Fully 40 percent said that they think the economy will drive more business in the next six months, according to OnForce's latest Confidence Index, released today.

Nearly one in five still predict a drop in their businesses between January and June 2012; this represents a 29 percent drop from Q4 2011's index. The overall Future Index stands at 61, a 17 percent increase in just 90 days. Meanwhile, the Current Index stands at 40, an 8 percent increase in the same timeframe.

Future Index
(Forecast for the next 6 months)

 

Current Index
(Current perception)

 

Q1 2012

Q4 2011

% Change

 

 

Q1 2012

Q4 2011

% Change

Positive

40%

31%

29%

 

Positive

27%

25%

8.0%

Negative

19%

27%

-29%

 

Negative

47%

51%

-8.0%

No difference

18%

19%

-5%

 

No difference

22%

22%

0.0%

I don't know

23%

23%

0%

 

I don't know

4%

2%

100.0%


The quarterly OnForce Confidence Index for IT Field Services surveys independent technology entrepreneurs nationwide who derive a substantial portion of their income from contract-based IT projects, including cloud computing, networking, and vertical applications. These experts are on the front lines talking with customers and have a unique perspective on where the market is and where it is heading. OnForce is the #1 source for on-site tech talent, serving thousands of contractors and companies in the U.S. and Canada.

Stabilizing Rates
Tech experts are feeling better about their prospects, and a significant number expect to raise their rates this year, though the majority is holding fast.  The first time this question was asked:

  • 28 percent expect to raise their billing rates in 2012
  • 65 percent expect to hold rates steady throughout 2012
  • 7 percent plan to decrease their rates

"Anytime contractors are ready to raise rates, it's a clear indication that the market demand is back –  and ready to shift in favor of skilled providers," said Peter Cannone, the CEO of OnForce. "We may see hiring pick up. We may also see more demand for highly skilled contract specialists as companies step on the gas with new projects."

The OnForce Confidence Index findings reinforce the U.S. Bureau of Labor's Statistics' Employment Situation Summary, which showed unemployment dropping to 8.5 percent - which hasn't been seen since early 2009.

Retail Spotlight
This quarter, the OnForce Confidence Index profiles the retail sector, highlighting its natural importance to the economy in the critical Q4 selling season and consumer spending.

Overall, retail-focused business owners (where retail makes up more than half their work) are more optimistic about the economy than the average field technician.

  • Only 10 percent from this group expect a negative impact from the economy in the next six months. Compare this to 22 percent for non-retail focused business owners.
  • The quarter's Current Index for business owners that focus on retail IT work is 43. The Future Index for the same group is 65.
  • This overarching optimism may come as a result of a broader skillset (and more work opportunities). Within this group, there were five skills that the majority of respondents said were a focus for their business. For non-retail focused business owners, there were only two skills that the majority made a focus.

About the OnForce Confidence Index for IT Field Services
The OnForce Confidence Index for IT Field Services reflects the opinions of entrepreneurs in IT field services with up to 100 employees, and at least $10,000 in IT services billings. The overall ranking is based on a 0-to-100 scale; a ranking above 50 indicates market optimism and below 50 indicates market pessimism.

The Q1 2012 forecast survey was conducted from Dec. 14th–20, 2011.

To learn more about OnForce, please visit http://www.onforce.com.

About OnForce
OnForce is the #1 source for on-site tech talent in field services in the cloud. By partnering with OnForce, service buyers can connect with thousands of highly skilled service professionals to fulfill on-site work throughout the US and Canada. With nearly two million service events completed, OnForce is a proven and trusted solution. Service buyers can gain extensive geographic coverage, lower service costs, extend skill-sets, and generate new streams of revenue on demand. The company supports more than 20 IT and CE categories, such as computers, printers, networking, VoIP, Point of Sale, and more. OnForce is the partner in service. For additional information, please visit www.onforce.com.

 

 

 

SOURCE OnForce



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