Fourth Annual Brother Survey Reveals Tech Malfunctions Negatively Impact Small
Businesses More Than Absent Employees
Benchmarks Indicate Small Business Stress Levels Remain High Year Over Year
BRIDGEWATER, N.J., March 19, 2013
BRIDGEWATER, N.J., March 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --Brother International
Corporation today released results from the fourth annual "Brother Small
Business Survey," which examined the role of technology in small business.
This year's survey most notably found that a surprising 75 percent of small
business owners indicate that a crashed computer is more disruptive than a
sick employee. Seventy-seven percent noted that a tech malfunction has
negatively impacted their business through a missed deadline or business
Survey results also revealed that while technology plays a vital role in terms
of office productivity, 66 percent of small business owners say they are
frequently overwhelmed by the amount of technology available to help them run
their business, and 86 percent additionally noted that in the past year,
office productivity suffered due to technology not working properly. In fact,
31 percent of respondents went so far as to say that they would give up a
week's worth of vacation to ensure tech malfunctions never happen in their
"This year's small business survey found that technology is just as important
as a healthy workforce," said John Wandishin, Brother Vice President of
Marketing. "The results emphasize the importance of delivering reliable and
easy-to-use products to promote a productive working environment."
What About Cloud Computing?
Only 28 percent of small business owners said they completely understand the
concept of cloud computing. And while 42 percent of respondents said they are
not using cloud computing at all, 35 percent said they were using it only for
data storage. Small business owners also noted using the cloud for document
management (21 percent) as well as business applications like customer
relations management and accounting and human resources (17 percent).
How Are Small Business Owners Feeling Versus Last Year?
While stress levels among small business owners remain high in general (58
percent in 2013 vs. 55 percent in 2012), "extreme stress" seems to be down.
Those claiming that their stress levels are at their highest levels ever (13
percent) is down almost half from last year (24 percent). However, 41 percent
of small business owners felt that their 2012 turned out worse than expected.
Are They Investing in Their Businesses?
The survey measured a slight uptick (48 percent vs. 44 percent in 2012) in
small business owners feeling the need to stockpile cash to help guarantee
that they could survive any economic downturn. However, 52 percent believe
that investing in their business can give them an advantage over competitors.
When asked about business investments, 51 percent of small business owners
said that they prioritize technology tool-related capital investments such as
new software, mobile apps and cloud computing services. Machinery-related (21
percent) and facility-related investments (20 percent) were other areas of
Small business owner and noted expert Gene Marks, agreed with many of the
survey's findings. "While running a small business is still tough in this
slow economic recovery, I'm seeing that small business owners are more
optimistic about the future," he said.
The Brother SBO 2013 Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research
(www.wakefieldresearch.com) among 500 U.S. small business owners of companies
with less than 100 employees, between February 21st and March 4th, 2013, using
an email invitation and online survey.
Results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. The magnitude of the
variation is measurable and is affected by the number of interviews and the
level of the percentages expressing the results. For the interviews conducted
in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does
not vary, plus or minus, by more than 4.4 percentage points from the result
that would be obtained if interviews had been conducted with all persons in
the universe represented by the sample.
Brother International Corporation is one of the premier providers of products
for the home, home office and office. The U.S. corporate office in
Bridgewater, N. J., was established on April 21, 1954 and currently markets
many industrial products, home appliances and business products manufactured
by its parent company, Brother Industries, Ltd. of Nagoya, Japan.
These products include an award-winning line of Multi-Function Center®
machines and printers. Brother also provides the number-one line of facsimile
machines in the U.S. and is the leader in electronic labeling, with its full
line of P-touch® Electronic Labeling Systems. For more information you can
visit the website at www.brother.com.
NOTE: All trademarks and registered trademarks referenced herein are the
property of their respective companies.
All decimals are rounded to the nearest percentage point. This may result in
certain numerical totals adding up to slightly more or slightly less than
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SOURCE Brother International Corporation
Contact: Stephen Drusano, MSL NEW YORK, +1-646-500-7665,
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