Half of geoscience employers are expecting lower financial performance for this year compared to 2019 as a result of the pandemic. In February, nearly 40% of businesses reported an outlook of increased financial performance over last year, but by June, these expectations had lowered substantially.
Additionally, 32% of businesses reported securing outside supplemental support to mitigate financial risks. Meanwhile, 31% of businesses reported increased workloads relative to staffing, while an additional 50% reported that they have maintained balance between workload and staffing. This echoes comments from non-academic geoscientists about their experiences of having increased personal workloads since February.
The most commonly reported COVID-19 impacts to business operations was regulatory restriction of access to facilities (65%), disruption in the supply chain and contractor availability (39%), and termination or amendment of revenue-generating contracts (35%). In terms of impacts to staff, salary reductions were more common (19%) than staff furloughs (10%) or layoffs (3%).
We will continue to provide current snapshots on the impacts of COVID-19 on the geoscience enterprise throughout the year. For more information, and to participate in the study, please visit: www.americangeosciences.org/workforce/covid19
Funding for this project is provided by the National Science Foundation (Award #2029570). The results and interpretation of the survey are the views of the American Geosciences Institute and not those of the National Science Foundation.