Monday 25 May 2020

Most UAE professionals expect a long recovery period, says report

DUBAI, April 1, 2020

There has been a considerable increase in the number of business professionals who believe that Covid-19 pandemic has impacted their businesses badly over the past weeks and majority of them expect a long recovery period, according to a study by YouGov.
Its latest data from the second wave of survey run among 500 senior working professionals between March 24 and 30 reveals that the number of business professionals claiming the Coronavirus has impacted their business has increased since last week and 92 per cent now say the pandemic had a large or moderate impact on their business.
This is up from 79 per cent in the last wave run between March 9 and 15.
Around 4 per cent said the impact was minor, down from 13 per cent last time and only 2 per cent claimed to have no impact at all (down from 6 per cent).
Cancelled or postponed business trips or appointments as well as declining sales continue being the most visible effects of the coronavirus, with half the surveyed respondents experiencing these outcomes. Professionals indicating the virus has led to insecurity among employees and introduction of hygiene measures remains the same as last time- at 44 per cent and 42 per cent, respectively.
There has been a slight increase in the number of business professionals saying they experienced difficulty in communicating with foreign partners (from 33 per cent to 39 per cent this week) and suffered interruption to the supply chain (35 per cent to 25 per cent).
Perhaps the most notable impact of the Coronavirus over the past weeks has been on the operations of businesses. The number of people who said they suffered office/ store closures and reduced operating hours has doubled since the last time the survey was run - 44 per cent and 42 per cent say this now, as compared to 18 per cent and 20 per cent saying this in the last wave. The UAE Government’s directive to shut all commercial establishments for two weeks could be the reason for this upspring in numbers.
On the other hand, the number who said they witnessed a positive impact such as increase in sales due to the outbreak remains the same- at 7 per cent this week as well.
The data suggest people expect further disruption and 86 per cent said the virus is very likely or fairly likely to affect their business in the future.
Looking at the current situation, a third feel (32 per cent) it may take a month or less for their business to recover from the pandemic, once the situation is resolved.
The rest, however, expect a long recovery period once things are normal. 18 per cent think it may take one to two months and 13 per cent feel it could take two to three months until business improves.
17 per cent reckon it may take longer - four to six months - and 13 per cent think it could take more than six months for business to run smoothly.
Those working in medium-sized enterprises (between 50-249 employees) are more likely to expect a longer recovery period as compared to the small (9 employees or less), micro (10- 49 employees) and large enterprises (250+ employees) in the country.
Data collected online by YouGov Omnibus among 500 respondents in the UAE with designations of senior business managers and above between 24th and 30th March 2020 using YouGov’s panel of over 6 million people worldwide. Data is representative of the adult online population in the country. -- Tradearabia News Service


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