'Business Casual' Not All Bad, Many Say

Ian P. Murphy |

CHICAGO — While more than half (51.6%) of readers responding to the most recent Wire survey report that the "business casual" trend that launched 10 years ago has had a "major" impact on the industry, many say that it has actually added to their operation's sales volume.
Asked what effect casual clothing has had on their operation's overall sales volume in the last few years, 29% of respondents said that "Sales increased slowly," at a rate of 0% to 5% per year. Another 19.4% said that "Sales increased substantially," more than 5% each year.
Some 9.7% of respondents said "Sales decreased slowly" at a rate of 0% to 5% each year thanks to casualwear, while 19.4% of plants reported substantial decreases in sales of 5% or more every year. One in five respondents (22.6%) said "Sales were flat."
Asked what they had done to respond to the business casual trend, "Targeted casual clothing as a source of business" led the strategies with 64.5%, followed by "Explored new sidelines to fill excess plant capacity" with 58.1%.
Only 19.4% of respondents "Encouraged a return to more formal business attire," and 3.2% did "None of the above.." "Other" responses (9.7%) indicated a renewed commitment to customer satisfaction and operational modernization.

About the author

Ian P. Murphy

Freelance Writer

Ian P. Murphy is a freelance writer based in Chicago, and was the editor of American Drycleaner from 1999 to 2011.


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