The overall picture painted by the latest IABM Industry Trends Survey is one of a worldwide broadcasting industry in steady recovery, although perhaps lagging behind still in North America.
The survey results reflect a North American broadcast and media technology market that is at least six months behind the rest of the world in rebounding from the global recession, but trends and expectations do indicate a more rapid improvement going forward.
Released twice a year, the Industry Trends Survey reports the opinions of senior executives in IABM member companies. In the newest version, members were polled about their Q3 performance and their outlook for the year ahead. Undertaken six weeks after IBC2010 in Amsterdam, the survey results reflect the general optimism that permeated this year's show.
Although tempered by continued uncertainty in some regions, confidence in the industry continues to grow — as evidenced by increasing investment in research and development as well as headcount. However, companies continue to be challenged by manufacturing capacity and supply chain problems that frustrate order fulfillment, and customer deferral of orders remains the largest constraint to order growth. Respondents also cited a shortage of skilled technical resources as another barrier to growth and order fulfillment. Executives do, however, feel generally optimistic about the months ahead, with 46% stating that market conditions will significantly improve by spring. The 'IABM Confidence Ratio' which was standing at minus 3 during the recession is at a very respectable plus 11 in the latest survey.
"The IABM Industry Trends Survey provides a comprehensive look at the current state of our industry and expectations moving forward," said Peter White, director general of the IABM. "No senior manager on the supply side of broadcasting or media technology should be without this information — it provides key benchmarking data and is an important aid to decision-making."