The coronavirus, or COVID-19, is disrupting day-to-day business. 4A’s Research wanted to learn what is being done around the country and in different industries to communicate coronavirus procedures to employees. Using Suzy, a real-time market research platform, 4A’s Research surveyed 1000 consumers on March 9, 2020 to see how their workplaces are handling COVID-19.
75% of respondents said that their workplaces have communicated to them about COVD-19. Effective communications are key to ensure businesses and employees are prepared. Policies for meetings/conferences, business travel, outside visitors, and telecommuting need to be communicated.
The top three policies and procedures that employers are implementing are:
- Handwashing instructions/encouragement
- Hand sanitizer provided
- Increased cleaning.
Companies are initially implementing heightened cleanliness and sanitation standards. This shows that companies across the country are being proactive and precautionary about the virus, while attempting to limit alarm.
Telecommuting and work from home policies are top tactics businesses, including ad agencies, are implementing to continue the workflow and keep employees healthy and safe. Businesses in urban areas have already put telecommuting policies in place. According to our survey, 30% of respondents who work in urban areas said that working from home is mandatory, while about 25% say it’s optional or at a manager’s discretion. The majority of those with no telecommuting policies work in rural and suburban areas.
About 3% of survey respondents work in the advertising/marketing industry. Almost 18% are already working under a mandatory telecommuting policy. This could rise as certain parts of the country become more affected. With the constantly changing nature of the coronavirus, ad agencies should be proactive in implementing policies and communicating with employees.
Don’t miss our recent article on Consumer Sentiment Towards Brands During COVID-19, focusing on how consumers feel about brand communication during the pandemic and leaning how COVID-19 is changing people’s daily routines.
- Ad Age, How China’s Agencies are Coming Back After the Pandemic and Returning to Work, March 17, 2020 (subscription is required)
- Adweek, How Agencies in China are Navigating the Coronavirus Crisis, February 13, 2020 (subscription is required)
- Forrester, How Employees Feel About Coronavirus, March 11, 2020
- Harvard Business Review, What are Companies’ Legal Obligations Around Coronavirus, March 4, 2020
- Harvard Business Review, 8 Questions Employers Should Ask About Coronavirus, March 15, 2020
- Nielsen, COVID-19: Tracking the Impact on FMCG, Retail, and Media, continuously updated
- Northstar Meetings Group, Coronavirus and Meetings, continuously updated
- PR Week, How Should Brands Handle Their Comms During the Coronavirus Crisis?, February 3, 2020
- WARC, Rebounding from the COVID-19 Crunch | Series offering guidance and insights to marketers amidst the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak, continuously updated (subscription is required for some articles)
How are brands and consumers responding to the crisis?