RESTORE Initiative Announces First Survey Results on Georgia’s Recovery
By Metro Atlanta Chamber
On April 15, the Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC) launched RESTORE, a critical initiative aimed at accelerating our state’s recovery from the current economic crisis. John Rice, Chairman of GE Gas Power and a former MAC chairman, is leading the effort in collaboration with more than 50 C-level executives along with support from the Boston Consulting Group. The initiative is grounded in data that will guide a comprehensive list of policy solutions that federal, state, and local governments across Georgia can apply as we work together to swiftly restore our economy.
Importantly, in the last week of April, RESTORE surveyed Georgia business leaders to capture input that will inform the initiative’s recommendations, including safety and behavioral standards, and other topics. More than 310 business leaders, representing companies from various industries with footprints across the state, ranging in size of fewer than 25 employees up to 500 or more, responded to the survey. The survey results emphasize restoring consumer and employee confidence as the top priority for business leaders. They also support a tiered reopening with standards that vary by industry sector, geography, and population demographic.
Following are additional key findings from the survey:
- A majority of businesses expect reduced demand and employment will last longer than six months.
- 75% reported industry employment declines.
- 84% of respondents said that restoring consumer confidence is the most important theme to address, followed closely by catalyzing or jump-starting businesses and employment at 82%.
- 78% also said that providing support for displaced workers is important.
- 73% prioritized business tax benefits that could be realized immediately for the most impacted industries.
- The top business challenge cited is the demand for working capital, both to survive and to restart operations.
- For businesses, social distancing is top of mind. More than 70% see limitations on gatherings and physical proximity to others as important.
- Respondents see practices around sanitation, social distancing, and disinfection as the most important aspects of operational business changes to restore consumer confidence.
- Sharing information on business COVID response, contact tracing and diagnostic protocols are all seen as key to building consumer and employee confidence as the state reopens.
The Metro Atlanta Chamber continues to follow the COVID-19 pandemic carefully, and the rapidly evolving impact it is having on our daily lives, our community and our state. While the road to economic recovery will be challenging, we are committed to doing our part as we work together to ensure the health of our families, neighbors, employees, and customers as well as the health of our economy.
For daily updates on COVID-19 trends and resources in metro Atlanta and around the U.S., visit: https://www.metroatlantachamber.com/covid-19-resources.