A survey of senior leaders in Sydney organisations indicates strong support for the economic and health response to COVID-19 by the NSW and Federal government, but flags concern about the broader impact of the pandemic.
The Sydney Leadership Survey, commissioned by the impartial Committee for Sydney think tank, is a poll of over 100 organisations representing more than450,000 employees.
Revenue won’t recover until late 2021
The survey found that 75% of organisations don’t expect 2019 revenue to bounce back until 2021/22 and that 83% of them still have most of their staff currently working from home.
A total of 85% of respondents said they are satisfied with NSW government’s handling of the health crisis and 78% are satisfied with its handling of the economic crisis. Similarly, 80% are satisfied with the Federal government’s handling of the health crisis and 76% of business leaders gave the thumbs-up to its handling of the economic crisis.
To get the economy back on track, most thought investing in an economic stimulus package based on infrastructure should be the top priority at both state and national level.
Construction sector needs a big boost
The senior leaders surveyed also want to see big investment in social and affordable housing projects that would help support the construction sector.
“Our survey results highlight how COVID has affected leading organisations in Sydney – and how senior leaders think the pandemic has been handled,” said Gabriel Metcalf, CEO of the Committee for Sydney.
“They show strong support for the government’s handling of the crisis, at both a federal and state level. Support for the response by the NSW government is slightly higher than their federal counterparts, which is a big boost for the way the Premier and her government have responded.”
Fund the major public transport projects
Metcalf added: “Our members think that investment in infrastructure should be a priority for both state government and the Commonwealth. This means continuing to fund the big public transport projects, but also smaller projects like giving money to councils to refurbish local parks and high streets”.
An interesting aspect that could have major implications for the Sydney CBD long term, Metcalf pointed out, is that 83% of the Committee for Sydney members expect they will permanently have more people working from home in the post-Covid world.