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Almost half of the world’s CEOs do not foresee a return to normalcy until 2022


Employees leaving a car factory
45% of top executives of large global companies they do not foresee a return to normality in their business until 2022, while only 31% expect to recover it by the end of 2021, according to the survey ‘CEO Outlook Pulse Survey’, carried out by KPMG globally between February and March 2021 and in which 500 executive directors took part.

Almost a quarter of the CEOs who participated in the survey (24%), including 25 Spanish, ensures that in the wake of the pandemic its business model has been transformed forever. In fact, 74% say that the digitization of their business operations has accelerated and that cybersecurity is now one of their main concerns.

In this way, executives place cybersecurity-related risks as the main threat for the growth of their organizations in the next three years, when last year they ranked fifth. Tax and regulatory risks also gain positions, tying for second place, while supply chain-related risks rise to third from eighth in the 2020 report.

“The results of the survey draw a complex picture“They point out from KPMG, highlighting that, although the CEOs slightly improve their forecasts for their company, sector and country in the three-year horizon compared to last year,” this improvement is a consequence of the optimism generated by vaccination programs are underway, “while the new restrictions have had a negative impact on the economic outlook and confidence in the global economy is at its lowest level since 2017.


In any case, the top executives consider that the pace of development of vaccination programs has become the decisive factor in their forecasts and more than half of those surveyed (55%) acknowledge that they are concerned that not all their employees have access to the Covid-19 vaccine, which could reduce the competitiveness of your operations or of certain markets.

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Thus, almost two-thirds of companies (61%) will not ask their professionals to return to the office until the vaccination process is successfully deployed in their key markets, and three out of four (76%) will wait until the governments of these markets encourage companies to return to normality, while only 5% ask for it depending on what their competitors or similar companies do.

Also, nine out of ten CEOs expressed their intention to ask their employees to inform them when they have been vaccinated, which will help organizations consider measures to protect their workforce.

In this regard, 21% of respondents implement additional precautionary measures when employees can safely return to their workplaces, such as asking customers and anyone visiting their facilities to inform them of their vaccination status.

The Covid-19 vaccine has supplied a dose of optimism in the top executives of large companies at a global level who, before making important decisions, want to be sure that their professionals will be protected against the virus “, says Hilario Albarracn, president of KPMG in Spain.


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For its part, the report reflects that only 17% of CEOs plan to reduce the physical space of their offices, compared to 69% that foresee it in August 2020, which suggests that either the size of the offices is already has reduced, or as the pandemic has dragged on, strategies have changed.

In this sense, the query reflects a lower commitment to predominantly remote work, since three out of ten managers (30%) consider a hybrid work model, in which most employees telework for 2 or 3 days per week, while 21% of those surveyed are inclined to hire resources that work predominantly remotely, which represents a significant change compared to 73% last year.

According to the criteria of

The Trust Project

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