- After a modest increase at the beginning of Q3, CEO confidence rose sharply toward the end of Q3, according to Oct. 20 CEO Confidence survey results from the Conference Board in collaboration with The Business Council. CEOs entered Q4 with a measure standing at 64, up from 45 at the beginning of Q3, according to researchers.
- Specifically, CEOs seem to be taking a rosier view of general economic conditions in Q4 compared to the start of Q3. Seventy percent (70%) said economic conditions were better compared to six months ago; 21% say conditions are worse, down from 90%. Capital spending plans also showed improvement, with 25% of CEOs anticipating increased spending over the next 12 months, up from 15% earlier in the quarter.
- But increased spending may not translate into wage gains for workers as 21% of CEOs predicted no increase in employee wages over the next 12 months and 5% say they may reduce wages. Hiring plans aren’t strong either. One-third of CEOs said they anticipate reducing their workforce over the next 12 months.
As part of the study, CEOs were asked to predict the pandemic’s most important long-term impacts. More than eight out of 10 named accelerating digital transformation as one of the "key legacies" of the global pandemic. In addition, almost half — 45% — said they felt the need to rethink current business models.
Before the onset of COVID-19, only 5% of organizations had implemented workforce transformations required to address disruption, according to a Sept. 22 report from SilkRoad Technology. When stay-at-home orders were issued by many state leaders, many employers continued operations in a remote capacity. The responsibility for getting employees up to speed in newly introduced digital technology has, for the most part, fallen to managers, sources previously told HR Dive.
Expert have suggested that managers demonstrate empathy for employees struggling with remote work, sharing their own struggles and examples of how they overcome poor productivity with workers new to the "work from home" world. Others suggested that managers work with employees to adjust schedules to a time of day most conducive for the worker to accomplish the most tasks, avoid multitasking and make resilience training a priority for organizations.
Experts also have suggested that HR and IT leaders work together to improve the employee experience. Especially in today’s remote work environment, they need to "work hand in hand," Sally Stetson, principal and co-founder of executive search firm Salveson Stetson Group, previously told HR Dive.
The International Association of IT Asset Managers advised organizations in March to have a business continuity plan that included IT asset management and to confirm workers had IT assets that were working properly and accounted for.