Insights for a Time of Crisis: Porter Novelli COVID-19 Tracker

Apr 15, 2020 1:05 PM ET

Insights for a Time of Crisis: Porter Novelli COVID-19 Tracker

In times of immense strain and crisis our truest colors often show through. As the entire globe faces the unprecedented and catastrophic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve seen moments of brightness during a fog of immense sadness and uncertainty.

This is the time when many things will be put to the test, including how business responds. In this moment of global need, we will remember those companies that stood tall, acted quickly and with humanity. We will also remember those that did not.

Today, we share new proprietary research, the Porter Novelli COVID-19 Tracker: Insights for a Time of Crisis, designed help the business world navigate the current crisis and work towards a new norm.

Key findings include:

  • Americans look to companies to lead during this crisis, some have more faith in business than government: Three-quarters (75%) of Americans believe companies must step up to support coronavirus relief – and a third (34%) have more faith in business to solve the coronavirus pandemic than other entities (including government and nonprofits).
  • Actions made now will impact reputation beyond the crisis: Three-quarters (75%) of Americans say how companies act now will impact their perceptions of them in the future and the same amount (75%) said they will remember the companies that stepped up. Seven-in-10 (71%) said they’d stop buying products from a company they felt was irresponsible during this time.
  • Business should share COVID-19 announcements, but most trusted resources are elsewhere: Although 71 percent of Americans feel better about companies when they share what they’re doing to support coronavirus relief efforts, state government (56%), followed by federal government (52%) and media (52%) are the most trusted sources for coronavirus-specific information.
  • Employees feel companies did a good job in supporting COVID-19 relief efforts, but speed is critical: While nearly two-thirds (63%) of employees feel their companies did a good job supporting communities during the coronavirus pandemic, four-in-10 feel their company could have acted faster.
  • Americans feel companies must do well by employees first, then support relief efforts: Of the various ways companies can get involved in relief efforts, Americans feel companies must first ensure employees can continue to receive money and benefits (68%), implement policies to product health and safety of employees (68%) and donate products or services to relief efforts (68%).

How we act and respond will remain a beacon for how to conduct business far into the future. The lens we look through today shows that business must act in service to individuals, broader society and the environment, and this must remain the lens moving forward. In perpetuity. Because the heightened expectations for business to be a leader, solution provider and force for good will not fade as the pandemic does. There has never been a more critical time to lead with Purpose.

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