Almost two-thirds (64%) of the respondents globally plan new safety measures and requirements for employees in order to return to work, according to the most recent edition of PwC’s COVID-19 CFO Pulse Survey, from 28 April. In this context, 55% want to reconfigure work sites to promote physical distancing and 22% to reduce real estate footprint.
”Most companies have moved beyond the short-term, reactive phase of the novel coronavirus pandemic, where they mobilised their response plans to address immediate concerns, such as the safety of their employees and the survival of the business. Now, they need to think about how to stabilise the activity to operate in ‘the new normal’. An essential component of these plans is the reopening of offices, factories and other workspaces. For this reason, the first two measures considered are safety at work and the reconfiguration of spaces to ensure distance”, said Ionuț Simion, Country Managing Partner at PwC România.
In the new context, 47% of the companies make remote work a permanent option for roles that allow, 46% want to accelerate automation and new ways of working and 44% to change shifts and/or alternate crews to reduce exposure.
Regarding the COVID-19 impact on businesses, the level of concern related to the crisis is holding steady with the previous edition of the survey, with 70% expecting significant impact to their business operations and most of them (80%) across all territories expect a decrease in revenues and profits.
From an industry perspective, retail and consumer CFOs report the highest level of concern (75%), because of the decrease in consumer confidence and the consumption power, due to reduced disposable income.
The lowest level of concern about the potential business impact was reported by energy, utilities and resources CFOs (57%).
The share of the CFOs believe their operations could return to „business as usual” within three months if the coronavirus pandemic were to end today, fell to 49% from 56% in the previous edition of the survey.
Other conclusions of the report
The survey was led among 871 CFOs from 24 countries or territories: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Malta, Mexico, Middle East, Netherlands, Philippines, Portugal, Singapore, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, US and Vietnam.
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Ionuț Simion, Country Managing Partner
Marketing and Communication Leader, Romania