Impact of Covid-19

1. Introduction to this section

Employer responses to the pandemic

An organisation's main priority during periods of economic downturn is to consolidate so that it has a chance of recovery later. For most, the most appropriate immediate action was to sit tight during the pandemic and wait to see what would happen.

You may have heard the term "recession" used to describe the immediate aftermath of the pandemic announcement in the UK and continue to hear it used to describe the situation around the world. An economic recession refers to a downturn in economic activity; two successive quarters of contraction. They are associated with a drop in spending. At the start of 2020, the global economy steadily contracted while populations were asked to stay in their homes to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Although there will be ripples of this recession for many years to come, there are positive signs of recovery but it’s important to realise the global economy will never revert to its original state.  

The pandemic has also changed the way we live, work, and spend. Many companies could not have dreamed at the start of March 2019 that its staff would be finding ways to work remotely and be embracing digital technologies. This fast track down a route the economy had only started to travel down has altered the way we live and work and change the perceptions of employers and employees, e.g.  

  • Proven that workers can successfully work from home, meet deadlines, collaborate digitally 

  • Conference calls are appropriate for use in many situations and can reduce travel expense and environmental impact, e.g. to connect large teams for meetings and conferences 

  • Change the way employers and employees think about work/life balance and wellbeing

Digital solutions have supported workplace infrastructures to recover and will likely be used alongside in-person options in the future.