New Employer Survey Details Impact of Coronavirus Pandemic and Outlines Policy Solutions
Since the coronavirus pandemic struck Mississippi, business owners across that state have been forced to adapt. Business has changed due not only to the virus, but also due to regulations and policies put in place by the state government. Many of these regulations have made it difficult for businesses to operate, forcing them to cut hours and jobs. Other changes have been positive and allowed businesses to adapt to continue serving their customers.
Today, Empower Mississippi released a survey with data directly from Mississippi employers detailing how the pandemic has impacted them. “Unleash Mississippi Employer Survey: The COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Impact on Mississippi Employers” is a report that includes first-hand information from Mississippi business owners and employees about the real challenges they are facing.
The report includes data on how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted local businesses as well as specific policy recommendations to help employers get back to business and unleash the productive capabilities of Mississippi’s workforce. The data in the report comes from an online survey of business owners and employees statewide.
The survey was conducted by Empower Mississippi over the summer. This is not a scientific poll; the goal of this project is to hear directly from a sampling of Mississippi employers and workers about how government mandates and policies impact their work and their businesses. Policies are important because they impact people. This report presents a picture of how Mississippi’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has impacted actual Mississippians, for better and worse.
The results suggest that while much of the negative impacts were initially due to government shutdown orders for “non-essential” businesses, most businesses have not seen revenue recover to pre-pandemic levels, even if they are operating at near pre-pandemic capacity.
Highlights from the report:
- 51% of survey respondents said that the operation of their business was restricted by the government response to COVID-19, and 63% of these individuals say their business is still operating at below 50% capacity.
- The impact on business activity and revenue is even more pronounced, with 81% of business owners and 72% overall indicating that business activity and revenue has slowed down to some degree since the start of the pandemic.
- Of these responses, a majority (59%) say activity and revenue has slowed significantly.
- Policymakers should remove regulations that make it harder for licensed professionals to work remotely, and other occupational licensing regulations that act as barriers to entry for fields that are in demand.
To read more, you can view the full report here: Unleash Mississippi Employer Survey: The COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Impact on Mississippi Employers.
Policymakers have faced new challenges when dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. When crafting policy solutions to respond to these situations, policymakers must use actionable data that reflects the challenges faced by actual Mississippians. This report presents a picture of how Mississippi’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has impacted actual Mississippians, for better and worse.
Policymakers should consider the real impacts of these policy responses, prioritizing policies that make it easier for businesses to operate and repealing those that make it more difficult for Mississippians to work.