Western Australia 

Respondents from WA remain the most optimistic about Australia's continuing economic prosperity. No surprise there. Nevertheless there has been a negative shift in business sentiment. In 2011 more than 70 percent of WA businesses believed the Australian economy was on an upward curve — this year only 27.8 percent feel this way.

State of Western Australia 

Looking back, WA appears to have outperformed the rest of the country. While a third of respondents say they did not meet their latest revenue targets, just over 40 percent actually exceeded their targets. Only 5.8 percent of businesses predict negative growth over the next 12 months with 39.3 forecasting zero to five percent revenue growth and 32.1 percent expecting growth exceeding five percent.


More than two thirds of WA respondents have reported skills shortages with 54.7 percent believing attracting and retaining qualified employees will be a major challenge over the coming 12 months. Overall the labour position appears to remain tight west of the Nullarbor. Last year 73 percent of respondents to our survey said they intended to employ additional staff in the coming year — this year that number has fallen to 61 percent, which still remains by far the highest for any state or territory. WA firms also continue to experience more skills shortages than anyone else.

A third of WA respondents feel carbon pricing will have a high or medium effect on the welfare of their businesses.


More than half of the WA respondents have also noticed an increase in the stringency of the banking information requirements being imposed on them.


Figure 1: Perceived position of Australian economy in economic cycle


Figure 1


Figure 3: Employee headcount over the past 12 months


Figure 3

Figure 2: Fulfilment of revenue targets for the latest 12 month period


Figure 2

Figure 4: Employee headcount intentions for the next 12 months

Figure 4

Video: Private Companies Survey 2012

Video: Private Companies Survey 2012
KPMG's National Managing Partner of Private Enterprise, Peter Siebels, gives an overview of the findings from the Private Companies Survey 2012.

Full report

Private Companies Survey 2012 in PDF

Download a copy of the Private Companies Survey 2012 in PDF.