Following the big transformations of the 1990s, enterprise structure and technological level seem to have become stabilised in Hungary. Under these circumstances it is especially interesting to identify the elements responsible for competitiveness in general, and the role technology plays in development in particular, according to managers experienced in production and marketing. This empirical study - based on in-depth interviews and field research - summarises characteristics of the technological level in the sectors examined, role of technology and labour in production, effects of foreign direct investment, relations between competition and firm-level factors determining competitiveness, and concludes by summing up those most frequently mentioned proposals that should be incorporated into economic policy according to managers. Main findings indicate that more qualified, more intensive and cheaper labour can be substituted for high technology. The competitiveness of an enterprise is not determined by technology alone, but rather by a combination of technology, the parameters of available labour and the costs of investment increasing productivity. The insufficiency of inter-company relations, together with a shortage of available assets necessary for investment constitute the major threat undermining the competitiveness of enterprises in present-day Hungary.