When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020 it seemed like life as we knew came to a sudden and complete stop. That’s an exaggeration, but there’s no denying COVID-19's impact on our personal and professional lives and subsequently, on the economy.
In order to capture that impact on treasury and finance, Strategic Treasurer formed the Treasury Coalition. The Treasury Coalition is a collaborative group of industry leaders that sponsor a survey sent to treasurers and financial professionals around the globe. Questions are intended to take the pulse of important topics such as the status of debt and liquidity, perceptions of when financial normalcy would return, and how Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable functions were affected.
SmartPayments has reported the results since the survey's inception. For the first time, the results from week 8 revealed a positive trend in several key areas, prompting the Coalition to shift focus from ‘crisis’ to ‘recovery’ – to the extent that the ‘Global Crisis Monitor’ survey has morphed into the ‘Global Recovery Monitor’ with a revised question set to reflect the new direction. The Global Recovery Monitor also switched cadence from a weekly to a bi-weekly event.
The first results are in, from over 1,000 respondents across the globe:
- Working from Home Status: although some companies are beginning to open up offices, 58% of respondents report their organizations have no plans to do so at this point – which correlates with the rank of staff safety jumping from 7th last week to 2nd this week.
- Accounts Receivable: AR continues to be perceived as most negative in regards to liquidity impact, but for the second week it is continuing a slow, positive trend toward improvement in that outlook.
- Staffing Changes: this week shows nearly 30% of respondent organizations have seen employee count reductions directly attributed to COVID-19: 62% due to layoffs, 54% due to furloughing, and 23% as a result of contractor terminations.
- Recovery Curve Predictions: when asked what shape the economic recovery curve would take, 40.9% believe a W-shaped model would present, indicating the view that we’ll see an initial positive uptick followed by a second downturn before permanent recovery. 23.9% believe we’ll see more of a Swoosh with 20.5% seeing more of U-shape – both models indicating we're in for a longer, but steady, recovery.
- Revenue Outlook: 33% of respondents expect revenue for the period of calendar Q2 in 2020 (April-June) to be 10-30% lower than usual, with 29% expecting to see no year/year change.
Full Results for May 13-May 27, 2020
Each week, the Treasury Coalition will continue to offer insight into what’s top-of-mind in the treasury and financial industries during the pandemic, and how practitioners are viewing the recovery timeline.
How You Can Help
To be a meaningful resource, the Global Recovery Monitor needs consistent participation from those in the treasury and finance trenches. To add your voice to the results, take the survey here.
Bookmark the link and visit every Wednesday for a new question set. Check back weekly, as SmartPayments.com continues this series as provides insight into how the industry is recovering from COVID-19.
Read the first article in this series, featuring an interview with Craig Jeffery, Executive Director, Strategic Treasurer.
Check out other results articles:
For further insights into the payments industry and beyond, subscribe now to SmartPayments.com and stay up-to-date on the latest trends and topics. You can also check out The Payments Podcast, where experts weigh in on real-time factors impacting the payments industry.