Majority of tech firms are focusing on employees and processes to address market volatility, study finds

Industry continues to see opportunity through transformation

CHICAGO (May 8, 2023) – The tech industry has been particularly impacted by recent market volatility, including higher interest rates, bank failures and recession concerns, leading a number of tech firms to restructure their teams in anticipation of more normalized growth rates. Still, the industry remains empowered with 79% of tech executives reporting that their organization is focusing its people, processes and technology on the mission of turning volatility into opportunity – 10% higher than the survey average, according to the Crowe Executive Outlook Study, joint research from Crowe LLP and Forbes.
In the study’s debut report, “The Unlikely New Frontier of Enterprise Growth: Why Innovation Leaders Pull Ahead in Times of Volatility,” executives across industries weighed in on current and future challenges they are facing and what their organizations are doing to address them. Feedback was collected from 1,001 C-suite and business leaders and focused on eight industry verticals. 122 respondents identified as part of the tech industry, with 74% of that group reporting as primary decision-makers.  
Tony Klaich, managing partner of the Crowe technology, media and telecommunications group, noted it’s not surprising such a high number of tech companies aim to focus on all aspects of business to drive transformation. “The ethos of tech firms is to enable everyone, versus just a few, to change the world, which led to the creation of the gig economy, for example,” he said. “It’s only natural that they’d look for similar opportunities within their own organizations and arm their people with the tools to innovate.” Klaich added that finding efficiencies through technology is a key driver for how tech companies can absorb some of the productivity issues from recent staff reductions. 
In the study, about three-quarters of tech respondents reported that they were confident in their organization’s ability to detect and predict volatility internally. “With the tech industry’s advances in artificial intelligence, predictive analytics and data-driven thinking, they’d certainly be confident in their ability to maneuver in these volatile times,” Klaich said. 
Sixty-one percent of tech firms believe their organizations have primarily benefited from disruptions and volatility in the market, compared to just over half of all respondents. “The tech industry prides itself as leading the way in the fourth industrial revolution – advancing through disruption is their mantra,” he said. “During the pandemic, other industries quickly turned to the tech sector to find new ways to operate, so they’ve recently felt that benefit from volatility. However, the pandemic-induced adoption rate of technologies by other industries has reduced to a more normalized rate this past year which is why we don’t see an even higher percentage.” 
Klaich added, “While the pandemic-related volatility brought a lot of opportunity to the tech sector end-markets, today, conversely, other industries are preparing for a downturn and delaying their tech spend. Simultaneously, tech companies are also feeling the pain caused by increased interest rates, economic slowdown, inflation, supply chain issues and the repercussions of the bank failures. I’m seeing tech industry leaders forging through this new economic cycle and the rest of the industry will need to follow– perhaps it will even be another catalyst to new innovation that will change how we all live and work.”  
For more detailed findings or more information about the Crowe Executive Outlook Study, view the report, “The Unlikely New Frontier of Enterprise Growth: Why Innovation Leaders Pull Ahead in Times of Volatility.”
About the Crowe Executive Outlook Study
In partnership with Crowe LLP, Forbes surveyed 1,001 executives from organizations with at least $500 million in annual revenues. Respondents represent companies across eight industry sectors – banking, government, healthcare, insurance, manufacturing, pharma/biotech, private equity, and technology, media and telecommunications. Most respondents, 71%, are C-suite executives, board members, or partners. Three-quarters (75%) of respondents are primary decision-makers.

About Crowe 
Crowe LLP is a leading public accounting, consulting and technology firm with offices around the world. Crowe uses its deep industry expertise to provide audit services to public and private entities. The firm and its subsidiaries also help clients make smart decisions that lead to lasting value with its tax, advisory and consulting services. Crowe is recognized by many organizations as one of the best places to work in the U.S. As an independent member of Crowe Global, one of the largest global accounting networks in the world, Crowe serves clients worldwide. The network consists of more than 200 independent accounting and advisory services firms in more than 130 countries around the world.

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Amanda Reich
Amanda Reich