02:58 PM

39% Of Small-Business Owners Plan To Expand Through Use of Technology

Only 11% of execs surveyed say they'll fuel company growth by hiring people.

Owners of smaller companies are less worried about the economy than they were a year ago, a new survey finds. Right now, about 31% of business owners say the economy is their biggest concern, according to a study commissioned by small-business software maker Intuit Inc. That's down from 36% last year.

Intuit hired independent market-research firm Decipher to gauge the optimism of that sector of the economy and to find out how companies will fuel their growth.

A bit more than one-third of business owners surveyed say they are, indeed, fixing to expand their company. And more say they'll do it through productivity-boosting business technology than by hiring more people.

Fully 39% say they'll grow by buying new software and hardware, 27% are depending on marketing initiatives, and only 11% will expand their payroll.

The base of respondents comprised 755 owners of companies with fewer than 250 workers that had been open at least two years.

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