About 80 percent of CEOs say they expect a more widespread remote workforce as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a global survey from accountancy firm PwC released Tuesday.
Of those surveyed, 78 percent said they think that remote work is "here to stay" while just 21 percent said they think the shift is temporary.
A number of CEOs said that the different trends emerging during the pandemic could lead to widespread change in work models.
The survey also shows that executives are less worried about productivity in work-from-home models, with 26 percent of CFOs saying they expected productivity loss, down from nearly half of CFOs saying the same in a poll just two months prior.
More than 40 percent of respondents ranked digitizing their core business as one of their top two priorities following the coronavirus pandemic.
“Investing in employees — their safety, their wellbeing and their skills — is absolutely key to economic recovery,” PwC UK’s chairman Kevin Ellis said.
Investing in employees is absolutely key to the economic recovery. UK CEOs are leading the way, according to our latest #CEOSurvey, especially when it comes to supporting their people's wellbeing https://t.co/SnJl5bLYZJ pic.twitter.com/avfTj6yOU2— Kevin Ellis (@KevinJDEllis) August 11, 2020
Fifty-four percent of respondents also said they think that the shift toward a gig economy over traditional jobs will continue.
Fifty-three percent of CEOs globally said they believe global economic growth will decline in the next 12 months, and 23.5 percent said they expect it to remain the same. In the U.S., 62 percent of CEOs expect an economic downturn in that same period, and 27 percent expect it to remain the same.
The share of CEOs who are “very confident” in their 12-month growth prospects fell to 27 percent, the lowest level since 2009, the survey found.
Half of CEOs globally and 69 percent in the U.S. said they believe internet-related companies will become “more fractured” with government legislation.
When asked if they believe climate change will lead to significant new products, 25 percent of CEOs globally said yes while only 15 percent of CEOs in the U.S. thought so.
PwC’s network of firms operates across 157 countries. PwC’s survey was based on responses from a group of 3,500 of its clients globally conducted from June 15 to July 3.