• New Members

  • The Impact of the Coronavirus on Small Business

    AS SOCIAL DISTANCING CONTINUES, SMALL BUSINESSES CHANGE OPERATIONS  

    U.S. Chamber of Commerce survey on the impact of the coronavirus shows the vast majority (85%) of small businesses are still concerned about the pandemic’s impact. Concern is highest in the retail (90%), services (88%), and manufacturing (87%) sectors. Those in the retail and service sectors are more likely to be very concerned about the pandemic (60% and 62%, respectively).

    At this time of continued concern, the survey shows a growing adaptation in business operations. One in five small businesses report transitioning some or all of their employees to teleworking (an eight-point increase from last month). This month, more report transitioning the retail aspect of their business to more virtual or digital setups (17% this month, up from 10% last month).

    Across sectors, retailers are most likely to have transitioned the retail aspect of the business to more virtual or digital configurations (24%, compared to 7%-19% among other industries) or delivery/pickup (22%, compared to 5%-14% among others). Professional services businesses are the most likely among sectors to have transitioned employees to teleworking (34% report doing so, compared to just 12-16% of other sectors). This reflects a significant 20-point increase in the number of professional services businesses who have moved to teleworking from last month (14%).

    Many small businesses (58%) are making financial adaptations as well. More than a quarter (27%) report downsizing their business’s use of utilities, 19% have adjusted employee salaries or hours, and 12% have downsized their business insurance coverage. Small businesses are also seeking other forms of financial relief, including a significant increase in those who report applying for a working capital loan (19% this month, a 15-point increase from last month) and asking their landlord for flexibility in paying rent (17% this month, an eight-point increase from last month).

    Read More