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Business impact of virus crisis worse in UK than other countries, study suggests

By Alan Jones, PA Industrial Correspondent

The business impact of the coronavirus crisis is worse in the UK than other countries including France and Germany, a new study suggests.

Research by recruiter Robert Half indicated that Brazil reported the greatest degree of negative impact, followed by the UK and Belgium.

In contrast, most executives in France and Germany indicated that the business impact of the pandemic was largely neutral, said the report.

Most of 1,500 executives surveyed in the five countries said they were pushing forward with opportunities post-lockdown, with digital transformation the top priority for many.

Almost a third of respondents said they had redesigned job roles and adopted new business models in response to the virus crisis.

Matt Weston, managing director of Robert Half UK, said: “Commercial agility, use of new technologies, effective forward planning and risk management will remain vital to business recovery following the impact of Covid-19.

“Businesses should determine which projects they want to prioritise over the remainder of the year and conduct a skills audit to ascertain if their current workforce is equipped with the capabilities needed to achieve their new-look goals.

“The essential competencies needed to grow their business may have shifted during the pandemic, so they may need to redesign job roles, upskill current employees, or consider new combinations of permanent, temporary and project-based staff in order to build a smart, flexible staffing plan to power their post-lockdown recovery.”

– Around 300 executives were surveyed in each of the five countries in small, medium and large companies.

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