WF&FSA's COVID-19 Impact and Implementation Survey Results
By Pamela Morrison, WF&FSA Communications Manager
In unprecedented times, asking questions, looking for why and wanting that sigh of relief and return to normalcy is something we all crave. Thanks to Industry Insights, an independent research firm in Ohio, WF&FSA invited members to participate in an industry-wide COVID-19 study to survey sentiments and policies being implemented by businesses across the U.S. More than 3,000 companies from various industries shared their opinions on how the pandemic is impacting their companies.
They asked the questions on all our minds –
Are you home & staying put?
Do you believe we should be?
Are you essential?
How many workers did you lay off?
Will you do everything possible –
- Use government resources
- Accept help
- Heed the stay-at-home-and-be-safe orders for as long as needed to get the country re-hired and back on its feet?
How long until or if normal returns?
Are we returning to work?
Calculus, an engineering background, or an advanced degree was not needed to answer any of the questions (of course, if you had those, you were welcome to answer, too). It was your own individual experience, your feelings and your opinions that directed the results of the survey.
Curious about the results? Do you want to see if your feelings match your industry on the whole, are we really “in it together” or is it lions vs. wildebeests and may the strongest person or company win?
In WF&FSA’s case, 100% of respondents stated they see a negative impact to their bottom line compared to 80% of the total survey’s respondents across multiple industries. A total of 40% of WF&FSA respondents said they are not considered essential while the industry average is 21%. Many are making major reductions in advertising (48%), furloughing/laying off staff (63%), with 46% unsure if they are going to rehire. However, 60% respondents vs.30% of cross-industry respondents felt they would have major concerns if there was no government action in place. As a result, 66% are applying for Payment Protection Program loans and 76% are applying for EIDL, as opposed to only 23% in the industry-wide responses.
Across the board, however, the collective business acumen is stubborn resilience, that dig your feet into the ground and hold firm against the torrents of the strongest storm in recent history, and we will do whatever necessary to get businesses running again. Do we like it? A firm NO. There were strong feelings about who/what is essential. We are all hurting, whether we are working remotely, or furloughing until later. We hate asking for help but if that gets us back to work, we are using all available resources. Most impressive? We all want to return to our workplaces as soon as humanly possible as remote work is not the permanent choice.
In it together? Without a doubt, is overall sentiment.
Willing to act, make necessary changes, so that ALL can return strong? Begrudgingly, initially, but just like in any sports metaphor, blood, sweat, tears, and perseverance wins.
You can read the full Executive Summary here. We will all keep working hard and keep our country running, together.