COVID-19: Responding to the business impacts of coronavirus

As the COVID-19 situation evolves, Ireland and Irish businesses are feeling the human, social and economic implications. As domestic and international responses develop, how can you prepare your organisation and respond with confidence?

Addressing the impacts of the coronavirus on your business

Businesses in Ireland are responding to significant challenges and must continue to manage and mitigate the disruption that COVID-19 is causing to every aspect of their operations.

To support you as you respond to the ongoing impact of coronavirus, we've gathered our practical insights and guidance together in one place. From updates on the latest Government support, and webcasts on where to focus your strategy over the coming weeks and months, we are here to help.

Key areas for consideration during COVID-19

As the scale and nature of the disruption that the coronavirus pandemic continues to evolve, what are the key areas that Irish businesses should be focusing on, and how should they respond to the uncertainty that faces them?

Crisis management

The way you respond to COVID-19 will be the key to maintaining confidence and continuity in your business and its operations. You can position your business today to thrive tomorrow. 

  • You need to manage your response to the crisis, review your continuity plans and plan to emerge stronger from the challenges you are facing now
  • The Brexit preparation that Irish businesses have completed in recent years, particularly around workplace and supply chain management is coming into play now. COVID-19 will test and flex these plans


A photograph of a cloudy sky and the sides of a modern building with glass and steel panels, as viewed from its atrium.


The welfare of employees is the key priority for Irish businesses, but there are other workforce challenges to address:

  • Your organisation needs to consider how it might return to work by reflecting on four key decision areas: health and safety, financial, worker preference and type of work
  • As the situation evolves, more steps are being taken to keep businesses afloat. You may need to consider availing of government supports or further payroll reduction measures
  • Communicating and leading your people by having the right information to make the right workforce decisions at the right time will help you to build and sustain a culture of high engagement throughout the COVID-19 crisis


A photograph of tall buildings with some lights on and an gloomy cloud-filled sky at dusk.

Supply chain and operations

The effects of the COVID-19 outbreak are particularly felt by organisations dependent on supply chains for their products and materials. Where there are areas of stress—such as items coming from an affected area or shortages—you need to act quickly.

  • Mapping your entire supply chain to have the visibility and information you need to make critical decisions in real time
  • Identify alternative supply chain scenarios and alternative sourcing strategies
  • Are there pre-approved parts or raw-material substitutions you can make?


A photograph of brown cardboard boxes stacked on pallets with tall shelves filled with boxes behind them.

Finance and liquidity

Organisations are experiencing significant operational, financial and liquidity challenges as a result of COVID-19. A priority for businesses is managing cash pressures to help you sustain and succeed in these uncertain times. It is critical that you:

  • Have a solid understanding of your cash position, assessing the potential medium- and long-term financial implications of COVID-19
  • Determine access to pools of liquidity and where working capital can be released and accessed
  • Have sufficient financial information to enable leadership and operational teams to make the right medium- and long-term decisions
  • Engage actively and realistically with stakeholders: consider the effect of disclosures on operations


A photograph of glass panels of a building reflecting a deep blue-coloured sky.

Tax, trade and regulation

Navigating complexity and risk during COVID-19 takes more than an understanding of tax and regulatory systems. It is critical that your tax function considers the broader economic, political and societal context you operate in and make informed, compliant decisions that drive your operations forward.

  • Effectively manage cash taxes, obtain available refunds and consider local government and tax authority measures in response to COVID-19
  • Consider actions to stabilise trade links and supply chains while bracing for unpredictable revenue and profitability in key markets
  • Assess the resources your company needs to meet your ongoing indirect and direct tax compliance requirements


A photograph of a cloudy sky and the sides of  tall modern buildings in various colours.

Strategy and brand

As your business moves from reacting to mitigating the impact of the outbreak, you should consider strategies to emerge stronger post COVID-19.

  • Consider accelerating digital transformations as the shift to remote working reveals gaps in IT infrastructure, workforce planning and digital upskilling
  • Protect growth and profitability through actions such as scenario planning, more frequent financial modeling exercises to improve resiliency, and new models that incorporate economic impacts of past pandemics
  • Take the pulse of your customers, thinking through more long-term considerations around shifts in core markets or business models as a result of the pandemic


A photograph of numerous dark-coloured buildings with blue lights and all stacked perpendicular to each other.

Contact us

Garrett Cronin

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Andy Banks

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Donal Boyle

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Mark McEnroe

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Declan McDonald

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Doone O'Doherty

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Tel: +353 87 276 8112

Follow PwC Ireland