Businesses Eager for Restart as 1 in 10 Say They Wouldn’t Last the Summer and Almost All Planning Return to In-Person Work According to New Business Survey

The Burnaby Board of Trade is releasing a new survey of local businesses which underscores the importance of plans for restarting the economy with 11% of responding businesses saying they wouldn’t expect to stay in business through the summer without easing restrictions and increasing consumer confidence and sales.  The survey also reveals over 90% of businesses planning at least a partial return to in-person work, with fully 43% expecting a complete return of employees to the physical workplace.

After 14 months of the pandemic, this new survey reveals uneven impacts of COVID-19 on local businesses. While 46% are reporting revenues have increased over 2020 and two-thirds say they could survive through the year or longer even if the situation doesn’t improve, another 31% are experiencing continued revenue declines and 11% of businesses think they could only hold on for 3 months or less without improvements to the current business climate.

“What this survey shows is how important it is that the Restart Plan rolls-out as expected, as some businesses simply cannot hold on for much longer,” says Paul Holden, President & CEO of the Burnaby Board of Trade.  “And with so much of our restart depending on vaccination rates, this survey should serve as a reminder for everyone to register and get their shot to support our local business community,” adds Holden.

The survey also reveals how businesses expect to handle the return to the physical workplace.  In the survey, only 9% of businesses expect most or all employees to continue working remotely, whereas 43% expect to return to on-site, in-person operations and 48% expect a hybrid model with employees working some days in-office and some days remote.

“Businesses have been incredibly adaptive over the pandemic, and what this survey reveals is that while they will continue to find ways of adjusting to new working styles, they also value the collaboration and engagement of the physical workplace,” says Holden.

The survey report can be viewed below or by clicking here.