Business innovation surges during pandemic, but “government must do more to support SMEs”

The coronavirus pandemic has spurred widespread business innovation, but government intervention is needed to maintain the momentum, according to new research.

The Institute of Directors (IoD) surveyed 769 of its members during the first half of last month, finding that 87{9fdcce03dc006ba6aefbae291db7d19e2674997f46d46055bf64c42b760b042b} had made changes to their business in response to the pandemic – with only 19{9fdcce03dc006ba6aefbae291db7d19e2674997f46d46055bf64c42b760b042b} stating they hadn’t made any permanent changes.

The research revealed that 42{9fdcce03dc006ba6aefbae291db7d19e2674997f46d46055bf64c42b760b042b} of directors felt the changes they had made improved their organisation’s productivity, compared with 27{9fdcce03dc006ba6aefbae291db7d19e2674997f46d46055bf64c42b760b042b} who said they did not.

Two thirds had made all the adjustments they intended to make, but a further fifth wanted to make more changes in response to the virus.

The directors surveyed expect to ramp up investment in areas such as research, development, training and software in the year ahead – although some significant minorities in each area said they would have to rein in

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