The COVID-19 pandemic (including measures to contain its spread) has impacted every aspect of the modern economy. Hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of cases have been reported among working-age adults – at one point, 30 percent of cases in the U.S. were among those aged 20 to 44 – many of which have required hospitalizations. Many workers have also had to lower their productive working hours, at times to serve as caregivers to sick family members, at others to tend to children following school closures.
Widely reported, commercial supply chain impacts have also been enormous. A staggering 94 percent of theFortune 1000 have reported seeing coronavirus supply chain disruptions. Those disruptions aren’t just to final products but to component parts, as well.
Then, there’s been the evacuation of worksites in compliance with official lockdown orders, which has precipitated the rush to remote working arrangements. Sources vary on the precise scope, but an early April 2020 MIT survey revealed that nearly one third of all workers in the U.S. who had been employed the month before were working from home. That was up from a 2017 baseline of five percent of people working from home, according to Census data.
In other advanced economies, the numbers are even higher. A Gartner HR survey of Australian employers found that a staggering 88 percent of organizations had encouraged or required employees to work from home due to the coronavirus. There, the baseline was similarly low, with the best available data showing regular teleworking arrangements among only six percent of the workforce.
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