Life as a result of COVID-19
ReSolve recently asked its clients and associates their views on the effects of the pandemic and how it might change their approach to both work and leisure in the future.
Overall, respondents were cautious about the speed at which the economy might recover from the effect of COVID-19. Almost 54% believed it will take 12 – 24 months before recovery takes place with a further 19% believing it might take over 2 years. There was a general belief that some short term measures and pent up demand might encourage an initial burst of activity but that is unlikely to be sustainable given the significant damage that has been wrought in so many sectors.
In terms of working patterns it seems 35% of respondents are already back in their office, but the majority 42% are not expecting to return until September, with 8% expecting to return later than October. Almost 100% said they were anticipating working from home more frequently in the future, with 38% expecting to be home-based for an average of 3 days per week. Almost half, 44%, expect to reduce their office space in the next year as a consequence. We anticipate this will have a negative effect on both the property market in terms of reduced rent for landlords and also on the many support services for office workers such as city centre retailers, sandwich shops, bars and restaurants already struggling to recover from a long period of lost revenue.
The ways in which people travel to work was also of concern. While 52% of respondents currently use public transport to get to work, almost 30% of those stated they were more concerned about using public transport than before the pandemic. Many said that they would be looking to travel out-of-peak hours and to walk where possible.