Operating revenues in the surveying and mapping industry increased 11.9% in 2012, reaching a new high of $3.0 billion, surpassing the previous peak of $2.9 billion set in 2008.
Operating expenses rose 12.0% in 2012, while the operating profit margin edged down to 12.5%. The largest expense item, salaries, wages and benefits, representing almost half of total expenses, was up by 11.7%.
The two main categories of goods and services provided in this industry are geophysical and non-geophysical surveying and mapping services. Geophysical surveying services, which primarily entail surveying sub-surface resources such as oil, gas and minerals, generated 44.4% of total industry operating revenue.
Non-geophysical surveying, which focuses on surveying the surface of the earth, accounted for 48.4% of total operating revenue. Sales from other goods and services, which include Geographic Information System development and customization, represented the remaining 7.2%.
More than half (53.9%) of the industry operating revenues were generated in Alberta, with the province posting a 17.8% year-over-year gain in 2012. While Saskatchewan surveying and mapping establishments accounted for 4.8% of the industry total, its year-over-year growth of 22.2% also contributed to the overall industry growth.
The bulk of the industry's sales are generated by the business sector, accounting for 77.3% of industry revenues in 2012, and up from 75.6% the previous year. The remaining sales were derived from individuals and households (8.2%), governments and public institutions (7.6%) and clients outside Canada (6.8%).
Note to readers
Data for the period from 2007 to 2011 have been revised.