Almost three quarters (73%) of the business leaders who responded to a survey said that their business had been affected by the health crisis, but that the effect had not been quite as severe as they anticipated in March 2020. At that time, 99% of companies expected a negative impact, according to PwC’s Global Crisis Survey 2021. For 20% of global organisations, the crisis has had a positive impact, with their business being in a better place today than it was before the start of the pandemic.
“Two years ago, in the first report published on this topic, the vast majority (95%) of respondents predicted that a crisis would occur in the next two years, but, at that time, a pandemic was not included in the list of possible causes. Although the effect has not been as severe as anticipated, the consequences of the pandemic restrictions are unprecedented and uncertainty remains. Organisations need an agile and flexible approach to addressing various unforeseen situations and types of crises”, said Dinu Bumbăcea, Partner and Leader of Business Consulting PwC Romania.
The effect of the health crisis has varied between countries and industries, but few will emerge unscathed from this period. The most affected sectors have been leisure, entertainment and higher education. The manufacturing and automotive industries, public and government services, financial services and the energy, utilities and resources sectors also reported negative effects. Technology and health companies have fared much better.
Only 35% of the respondents reported having a crisis response plan that was “very relevant”, thus indicating that the majority of organisations did not have specific plans in place for a pandemic situation. Thus, currently, 95% of business leaders report that their crisis management capabilities need to be improved, with 70% planning to increase their investment in building resilience.
When asked what was the most important action taken by their organisation so far in response to COVID-19, 80% of the business leaders across all sectors and territories agreed that their response to the crisis took into consideration the physical and emotional needs of their employees.
The PwC Global Crisis Survey included responses, information and insights from more than 2,800 business leaders representing organisations of all sizes in 29 industries and across 73 countries.