CFOs are most concerned about the effects of a global economic downturn (60%) and the possibility of a new wave of infection (58%), said PwC citing the recently released results of a survey.
The PwC survey of 989 CFOs in 23 countries and territories including China, Hong Kong, Japan, and Singapore found that CFOs have shifted their focus to bringing people back to a workplace that has fundamentally changed, the company noted.
Despite the challenges, 71% of CFOs are very confident that they would be able to respond effectively to a new wave of infections.
In addition, only 26% of CFOs anticipate productivity loss due to the lack of remote work capabilities in the coming month while 52% are planning to make remote work a permanent option for roles that allow.
Workplace safety. The majority of CFOs are planning new workplace safety measures (75%) and reconfiguring work sites to promote distancing (72%) when they start to transition back to on-site work.
CFOs report feeling very confident about their companies’ ability to provide a safe environment for customers (79%) and employees (74%).
Although a new wave of infection is among their top concerns, they also report feeling very confident that they would be able to respond effectively (71%).
Remote working. More than half of CFOs indicate they will take steps to improve the remote work experience (52%) and to make remote work a permanent option (52%).
Rebuilding revenue streams. 63% of CFOs cite offering new or enhanced products or services as the most pressing area, led by Denmark (72%) and the Carribean (70%).
Revenues. More than half (53%) of CFOs expect a decrease in revenues of up to 25% as a result of the current crisis.
Only 4% of CFOs say the impact of the crisis is still difficult to assess.
Cost containment. As companies settle into stabilisation, cost containment is a favoured strategy among CFOs, with 81% saying they will consider it in response to the crisis. 56% of finance leaders say they will defer or cancel planned investments, with facilities and general capex (82%), operations (47%) and workforce (40%) topping the list.
Only 11% of CFOs are considering deferring or cancelling investments in digital transformation.
Recovery. As CFOs implement return-to-work strategies, they are most concerned about the effects of a global economic downturn (60%), the possibility of a new wave of infection (58%) and financial impact on their company (47%).