Even as businesses are finding ways to make remote work more efficient and keep operations running despite a lockdown, 58% of senior management in various companies say that they have sales decline by over half due to the impact from Covid-19 and coronavirus.
YouGov surveyed 251 senior business managers and above between March 17-22 to understand how severely the pandemic has impacted their business and the overall economy. The survey has found that coronavirus had a large or moderate impact on businesses for 84% of respondents, while 8% said the impact was minor and 7% claimed to have no impact at all.
Among the top ways in which the outbreak has affected their business was cancellation or postponement of business trips or external appointments, as said by 60% of the respondents. Almost as many (58%) indicated there was a drop in sales due to the various lockdown measures implemented because of the pandemic.
Up to 55% of the respondents claimed to have introduced hygiene measures and increased sanitary supplies in the company and 53% sensed insecurity and safety concerns among employees. Many said they were facing HR-related issues such as the increasing number of employees working from home (46%) and increased employee sick leaves (39%). Others faced issues in the supply chain (45%), office or store closures (42%) and experienced reduced working hours (47%).
Only 9% said they witnessed an increase in sales as a result of this outbreak. 82% of the respondents said that the virus is very likely or fairly likely to affect their business in the future. GenX respondents (90%) were much more likely than the millennials (77%) to say this. Further, 19% of all respondents, however, feel it’s not likely or not very likely to have a future impact on their business.
Further, cancelled/delayed business trips or appointments emerged as the biggest visible impact of the virus, declining sales is the greatest commercial woe foreseen by people in the future, closely followed by further cancelled trips and appointments (at 59%).
Here’s what managers expect in the post-coronavirus business environment:
- 61% are expecting to see a decrease in sales in the future compared to those already seeing such a decline
- 50% foresee further interruptions to the supply chain in the future and also insecurity to persist among employees
- 41% feel that they will suffer office or store closures in the future as well
- 41% expect operating hours will reduce in the future
- Less than 10% look at this as an opportunity and feel there will be an increase in sales in the future.