The increasing confidence in business survival through the coronavirus crisis is mainly evident from the fact that fewer businesses were still expecting no more than 6 months of continuity as they stated in April under the circumstances then applicable. This is likely due to the relaxation of coronavirus-related measures. Further relaxation of the measures was announced on 6 May, when nearly 60 percent of entrepreneurs had already responded to the survey.
The improvement in terms of at least one year continuity which was seen in May as compared to April was most significant in retail trade. In April, 9 percent of retail businesses were positive about one year continuity; this had gone up to 65 percent in May. Likewise, confidence was clearly up in IT services (+48 percentage points) as well as cleaning and similar services (+46 percentage points) according to the measurement in May relative to April. In May, the lowest confidence scores regarding 12 months continuity were seen in aviation (2 percent), gambling and betting companies (including lotteries) (6 percent) and the travel industry (10 percent).
|Bedrijfstak||Maand||Maximum 12 months (% of entrepreneurs)||12 months or longer (% of entrepreneurs)||Hard to say (% of entrepreneurs)|
|Automotive trade and repair||May||35.3||43.4||21.3|
|Automotive trade and repair||April||75.7||5.0||19.4|
|Real estate activities||May||9.5||75.4||15.0|
|Real estate activities||April||25.7||39.7||34.6|
|Transport and storage||May||19.5||45.6||34.9|
|Transport and storage||April||44.4||18.2||37.4|
|Culture, sports and recreation||May||51.7||23.8||24.5|
|Culture, sports and recreation||April||71.4||4.3||24.3|
|Accommodation and food services||May||53.2||21.6||25.2|
|Accommodation and food services||April||75.3||5.0||19.6|
In May, implementation of the 1.5 metre economy and cost reductions were the most frequently cited measures entrepreneurs took to ward off the effects of the economic downturn due to the coronavirus crisis. At over 84 percent, the 1.5 metre measure was mentioned relatively most often by all branches of the telecommunications industry. Cost reductions were the most frequently mentioned action among the travel industry (62 percent) and aviation industry (50 percent). Innovation and development of new products and services were also mentioned fairly often by companies in aviation (46 percent), by libraries and museums (22 percent), in art (20 percent) and in the IT and information services industry (17 percent).
|Bedrijfstakken||1.5 metre rule implementation in operations and methods (% of entrepreneurs)||Heightened price competition/other markets (% of entrepreneurs)||Cost reduction (% of entrepreneurs)||Product/service adaptation (e.g. quality, delivery) (% of entrepreneurs)||Innovation/development of new products/services/processes (% of entrepreneurs)||Other markets/target groups (% of entrepreneurs)||None; measures (still) considered unnecessary by the company (% of entrepreneurs)|
|Automotive trade and repair||46.3||6.4||36.5||2.4||4.6||1.9||1.8|
|Retail trade (excl. automotive)||59.5||2.2||20.5||7.8||3.0||1.0||5.9|
|Transport and storage||38.1||1.1||33.7||6.9||7.2||4.1||9.0|
|Accommodation and food services||44.7||2.9||28.4||11.3||7.5||3.6||1.7|
|Real estate activities||51.1||2.2||13.1||13.6||9.3||0.0||10.8|
|Culture, sports and recreation||43.7||0.1||33.9||5.9||12.3||1.0||3.1|
Fewer self-employed and temporary contract workers in many industries
As for staff deployment during the coronavirus crisis, entrepreneurs in a large number of industries typically mentioned reducing the hiring of self-employed and temporary staff. Other measures mentioned by many industries included reducing staff working hours and/or the Temporary Emergency Bridging Measure for Sustained Employment (NOW) for their own staff. Terminating the employment contracts of own personnel was given relatively little consideration. Reducing the number of self-employed and temporary staff was cited relatively often (43 percent) by libraries and museums. The same applied to cleaning companies and road transport companies (both 37 percent) as well as radio and television broadcast companies (36 percent). Applications for reduced working hours and NOW were relatively more common in aviation (50 percent of all companies) and accommodation and food services (48 percent).
|Bedrijfstakken/branches (SBI 2008)||Less deployment of self-employed and temporary workers due to lower business activity (% of entrepreneurs)||More deployment of self-employed and temporary workers (to replace employees on sick leave) (% of entrepreneurs)||All or most of the staff working from home (% of entrepreneurs)||Most staff unable to work from home due to type of work (% of entrepreneurs)||Applications for NOW and reduced working hours for part of the staff (% of entrepreneurs)||Employment contract extinguished for all or part of staff (% of entrepreneurs)||Situation unchanged (% of entrepreneurs)|
|Automotive trade and repair||15.3||0.0||10.3||34.5||30.5||2.4||7.0|
|Retail trade (excl. automotive)||11.8||9.8||5.7||35.9||14.5||2.4||20.0|
|Transport and storage||26.8||5.1||10.8||28.9||21.8||0.5||6.0|
|Accommodation and food services||15.6||0.1||3.0||28.0||48.4||2.8||2.0|
|Real estate activities||14.7||0.0||54.4||11.1||5.4||0.6||13.7|
|Culture, sports and recreation||29.6||0.0||14.4||17.7||35.3||1.5||1.5|