Top Three Takeaways from HBJ’s The State of Business in Houston Event


Yesterday, Houston Business Journal hosted The State of Business in Houston panel and keynote event. The gathering served as a platform to discuss the city’s various growing industries and how they are shaping the economy throughout the region. Not only is the oil and gas sector booming, but Houston’s medical, banking, education, aerospace, and real estate industries are also experiencing strong growth. Panelists from prominent local finance, human resources, and real estate firms highlighted some of the areas where Houston businesses are leading the way.

Here are a few key takeaways that stood out from the panel discussion:

  1. The health and wellness of employees should be necessities, not added benefits.

Many businesses in Houston are helping cultivate a strong employee-employer relationship. Between corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities and programs that support healthy lifestyles, more and more employees in the Houston region are looking at their employers to maintain a premium company culture. Companies in Houston have listened, and the region is among the top cities in the U.S. for employee perks, such as on-site gyms, wellness programs, and casual environments.

  1. Backup plans for IT hardware and systems are an essential priority.

After Hurricane Harvey hit Houston in August 2017 and dropped more than 50 inches of rainfall in just a few days, the need to support and maintain backup IT infrastructure became even more crucial. The hurricane caused an estimated $125 billion in damage, making it the second-most costly storm in recorded history. Houston businesses must have dynamic business continuity practices in place to keep their facilities and operations moving through any natural disaster or emergency.

  1. Data analytics are driving key performance results.

Throughout the manufacturing and industrial industries, data analytics are revolutionizing key processes like automation, on-time delivery rates, and customer satisfaction. Houston’s industrial and oil and gas sectors are leading the way for some of the nation’s most advanced data reports and economic impact tools. The Houston Astros are another prime example of the city’s strong reliance on analytics to improve operational efficiencies. Big data – combined with artificial intelligence to improve professional development and technique – helped lead the team to win the 2017 World Series championship and 2019 American League Championship Series.

Headquartered in Houston since 1984, Smith is a proud business leader in our community. Smith relies on our strong employee wellness program, business continuity plan, and data analytics, which all contributed to our being ranked the #2 largest Houston-area family-owned business on HBJ’s list. Houston’s economic impact is on the rise, both locally and internationally, and Smith looks forward to being part of the city’s success.

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