“Despite the challenges over the last year, many firms have been bold and innovative while demonstrating agility in response to the pandemic. They shifted rapidly to online channels, automated production tasks, increased operational efficiency, and sped up decision making and innovation of operating models. This could substantially boost the rate of annual productivity growth around the world if organizations continue to build on the changes they’ve already made.” – Bert Miller, President & CEO, MRINetwork
CFOs across Europe have shared their views about economic prospects for 2021 in the thirteenth edition of Deloitte’s European CFO Survey, and their predictions are positive. A new wave of optimism and a renewed willingness to invest is prevalent across Europe, with many companies turning the page on COVID and focusing on the post-pandemic reality. Findings include:
- In every country and sector surveyed, more CFOs feel more optimistic about their company’s financial prospects than less optimistic, giving a positive net balance that is at its highest level since the beginning of the European CFO Survey series.
- Even sectors hit hardest by the pandemic expect revenues to increase. Forty-three per cent of businesses report to have already returned to their pre-pandemic level of revenue generations and another 24 per cent expect to do so by the end of the year.
- Expectations are particularly low in the tourism sector where no one has already returned to pre-pandemic levels and only 15 per cent expect to do so by the end of this year. At the other end of the spectrum, three-quarters of CFOs in the financial sector say they are already at pre-crisis levels or expect to be by the end of the year.
See an overview and full report at European CFO Survey Spring 2021 | Deloitte.
Workers in Asia Pacific are facing increased burnout due to lack of separation between work and personal life as well as worry of contracting COVID-19, according to Microsoft’s latest Work Trend Index report. On average, close to one third of workers in Asia Pacific cited increased rates of burnout, with the lack of separation between work duties and personal obligations seen as negatively impacting their wellbeing.
Surveying over 6,000 information and first-line workers across eight countries globally including Australia, Japan, India and Singapore, the study found that Singapore and India were the top two countries in the region with workers facing increased burnout, at 37 percent and 29 percent respectively. In addition, close to 34 percent of Asia Pacific respondents cited worry about contracting COVID-19, due to the lack of tech or protective equipment provided by businesses to effectively socially distance, resulting in increased stress levels.
Data showed that globally people are in significantly more meetings, taking more ad hoc calls and managing more incoming chats than they did before the pandemic. As people adjusted to remote working, after hours chats, or chats between 5pm and midnight, have also increased. Read the full story at News: One-third of Asia Pacific’s remote workers are facing burnout: Microsoft Study | People Matters.
In the first action of its kind, the Biden administration has formally asked the Mexican government to investigate reports of “serious violations” of worker rights at a General Motors plant in central Mexico, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said. The move marks the first use of an innovative labor rights provision in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, which took effect last year.
It also represents the first time the U.S. government has acted on its own to raise labor concerns under any trade agreement. As a senior House trade attorney, Tai helped fashion the “rapid response labor mechanism” in the new North American trade deal as a way to address the loss of U.S. factory jobs to low-wage Mexican competition. Promoting Mexican labor rights would ultimately raise wages south of the border, reducing the incentive for employers to move jobs there.
At issue is whether workers at the GM facility, which exports pickup trucks to the United States, are being denied their right to organize and to bargain collectively. If a review finds that workers’ rights have been violated, Mexico and the United States will discuss potential remedies. If the two countries fail to agree on an eventual resolution, the United States can request establishment of an independent panel to decide the matter.
Read the full story at U.S. wants Mexico to check GM plant for labor violations | The Washington Post.