While it’s no surprise that middle market retailers were hard hit by fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, proprietary RSM data underscores this vulnerability.
Some 44% of U.S. retailers lost domestic revenue because of the pandemic, while nearly half experienced disruptions to U.S. operations or production, according to a special industry oversample included in the proprietary second quarter RSM US Middle Market Business Index, a measurement of middle market business sentiment.
The oversample—fielded from April 8 to April 23—included 416 executives in four industries, including 109 in retail. An oversample adds people to a particular survey category to improve the data’s reliability.
One key data point highlighted a potential area of improvement for retailers as the initial COVID-19 outbreak slows: Some 80% of the retail respondents said they did not have a formal business continuity plan that outlines the procedures and instructions to be followed if an unanticipated event such as a pandemic interrupts their normal business operations. Even worse, of those that did have a formal plan, 50% were only somewhat familiar, or not at all familiar with that plan. That was higher than the other industries polled.