COVID-19 survey results: Members in Practice
We recently invited all UK Chartered Accountants working in Practice (around 5,000 ICAS Members) to take part in a short survey about the impact of COVID-19. We received 277 responses to the survey and in this article highlight some of the key findings from the research.
Why did ICAS carry out this survey?
The survey was carried out to help us understand how our Members working in Practice are coping during the coronavirus outbreak.
ICAS has developed a coronavirus hub on icas.com and is working hard to provide up-to-date and relevant information for Members. The survey was carried out to help us gain an understanding of the areas that are of particular concern for Members so that we can support them during this challenging time.
How will ICAS use the feedback gathered?
We would like to thank all those who took part in the survey. The survey has provided us with valuable information so that we can work effectively on your behalf.
We are using the research findings to assess the impact of coronavirus on accountancy practices and their clients, and to guide our discussions with government on policy issues. The research findings will also inform the future content we produce on the coronavirus hub and the delivery of our Ask ICAS webinar series.
Summary of survey findings
When asked “Are you aware of clients facing issues in meeting their financial, regulatory or statutory reporting obligations as a result of COVID-19.”
- 83% responded that they were.
- Nearly 1 in 5 (18%) said a significant proportion of clients were facing these issues.
- Only 1 in 10 said clients were not facing such issues.
When asked “Do you consider that the various measures introduced by the government go far enough?”
- 35% responded that they were sufficient.
- 37% thought they were not sufficient.
- 26% were unsure.
When asked what additional measures are needed, the following were found to be key themes:
- There are too many gaps in those not covered within the existing measures.
- There is insufficient support available for small or single director companies.
- The support is too slow to be delivered – the cash is needed now.
- Basic universal income is required.
- Banks are not playing their part/relaxation of loan guarantee conditions.
- The self-employed scheme is too restrictive.
- Assistance is required for businesses in hospitality and retail in higher-rated properties.
Restructuring and insolvency
Of those providing restructuring and insolvency services:
- 44% said they had experienced an increased demand for restructuring and insolvency advice as a direct result of COVID-19.
- 31% said it was too early to say.
- Only 3% considered that their firm was not adequately resourced to deal with a sudden upturn in restructuring and insolvency cases.
When asked what impact is COVID-19 having on the administration of your existing insolvency caseload:
- 60% were operating as normal.
- Nearly 1 in 4 firms (22%) reported difficulties due to IT/working from home arrangements.
- 1 in 6 firms were having to divert resources from running existing cases to new work.
- Nobody reported staff illness/self-isolation as having an impact.
When asked to predict the impact on restructuring and insolvency in the next 12 months from 0 (no impact) to 10 (Significant impact):
- The average score was 8.
- One-third ranked as 8 with an additional 37% rating 9 or 10.
- Only 1 in 10 ranked the impact as less than 6.
ICAS will be carrying out further research in order to assess the ongoing impact of coronavirus.
Get in touch
If you have any queries or feedback regarding the COVID-19 Practice Member survey please contact David Menzies CA, Director of Practice at firstname.lastname@example.org.