2021 Middle Market Business Index Infrastructure Report

After decades of watching America’s infrastructure decline, senior executives at middle market businesses are pushing to fix the nation’s basic systems, according to a recent survey of senior executives in middle market businesses conducted by RSM US LLP.

In a striking shift in outlook captured by the proprietary RSM US Middle Market Business Index survey, these executives agree that the state of the nation’s infrastructure is hampering economic growth, not only at the national and the local levels, but also within their own organizations. Here are some key takeaways of what executives told RSM in the survey, which was conducted from April 7 to April 28:

Key takeaways

The state of the nation’s infrastructure is hampering economic growth

  • 63% told RSM that the nation’s ailing infrastructure restricted growth of the national economy.
  • 61% said it restricted growth of their local economies.
  • 54% said it hurt their own businesses.

Lawmakers will, at long last, address the issue

  • 64% believe that meaningful action will take place in the next three years that will result in tangible infrastructure enhancements.

Infrastructure improvements will benefit the day-to-day operations of individual businesses

  • At least 63% of executives, when asked about 21 individual initiatives like improving roads and communications networks, said that the improvements would benefit their companies’ operations.

Businesses want to participate

  • 51% overall responded that they were likely to participate in the vendor selection process for businesses.

Climate change is part of the equation

  • 63% said they had already reduced their carbon footprint to zero, were working to get there, or were acting to reduce their carbon footprint, even if it’s not to zero.

A call to action in the UK

  • In a parallel survey conducted in the UK, middle market executives showed a similar interest in shoring up their nation’s infrastructure.
  • 68% said that it was restricting the growth of their nation’s economy.
  • 63% said it was hurting the growth of their local economies.
  • 64% said that infrastructure was restricting the growth of their businesses.


If the failure of the electrical grid in Texas this past winter showed anything, it’s the deficiency of the nation’s infrastructure and what can happen when a nation fails to invest in it. Even though executives expressed confidence in the ability to bounce back from such grid failures, that resiliency cannot mask the long-term decline in the state of the nation’s infrastructure. As executives are telling RSM, there is an urgent need to shore up what makes the American economy tick. And many middle market executives aren’t waiting. That change, they told RSM, starts by looking in the mirror.

Read the full report: