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Tag Archives: Vaccine

Measuring Business Response to COVID-19 and Other Labor Market Developments

At BLS, we are always looking for new ways to produce timely, accurate, and relevant data. In the spring of 2020, it quickly became clear the COVID-19 pandemic was going to have a major impact on the labor market and working conditions in the United States and globally. New surveys require considerable time and resources, but we wanted to produce new, high-quality data about the impact of the pandemic on businesses and workers. We also knew we needed to produce timely data so they would be relevant and useful for policymakers, the business community, students, researchers, and the public.

In early 2020, our Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program was piloting a platform that could add questions to the end of an existing BLS survey. In March 2020, staff quickly began creating survey questions to ask businesses about how their operations were changing because of the pandemic. Using this platform allowed BLS to leverage existing infrastructure to quickly create and field a new survey, the Business Response Survey to the Coronavirus Pandemic. It also allowed BLS to produce detailed data by state, industry, and business size.

BLS conducted surveys about the business response to the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. From the 2021 survey, 14.5 percent of establishments increased base wages because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Looking at the industry detail, we find that establishments in accommodation and food services, retail trade, health care and social assistance, and manufacturing increased base wages at a higher rate than the average for the nation overall.

Percent of establishments that increased base wages (straight-time wages or salary) because of the COVID-19 pandemic, by industry

Editor’s note: Data for this chart are available in the table below.

From the 2021 survey, we also found that 34.5 percent of establishments increased telework for some or all their employees during the pandemic. Among the industries, we found that accommodation and food services, natural resources and mining, retail trade, and construction were the least likely to increase telework.

Percent of establishments that increased telework for some or all employees since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, by industry

Editor’s note: Data for this chart are available in the table below.

Among the establishments that increased telework, 60.2 percent expected to keep the increases permanent after the end of the pandemic. We found that the five states or areas with the highest expectation of continued telework were the District of Columbia (76.7 percent), Illinois (69.3 percent), North Carolina (68.5 percent), Arizona (68.1 percent) and Colorado (68.0 percent).

Percent of establishments with increased telework that expect the increase to continue when the pandemic is over, by state

Editor’s note: Data for this map are available in the table below.

The 2021 survey found that 28 percent of establishments offered some or all employees an incentive to get a COVID-19 vaccination. Incentives could have been financial, paid time off, or permitting employees to remain on the clock to get a COVID-19 vaccination. The five states or areas in which establishments were most likely to offer vaccination incentives were Puerto Rico (49.3 percent), California (39.2 percent), District of Columbia (37.9 percent), Washington (32.8 percent), and Maryland (31.3 percent).

Percent of establishments that offered any employees a financial incentive, paid time off, or permitted employees to remain on the clock to get a COVID-19 vaccination, by state

Editor’s note: Data for this map are available in the table below.

BLS produced additional estimates on telework, workplace flexibilities, changes in pay, COVID-19 workplace requirements, establishment space size, relocation, supplementing workforce, automation, drug and alcohol testing, and COVID-19 loans or grants. These estimates are available in the 2021 tables.

We’ve published new information about vaccine incentives, increasing pay, COVID-19 workplace safety measures, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses and employees by industry. Also, we recently published a new article using data on telework during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year BLS is fielding another survey, asking businesses about telework, hiring, and vacancies. For telework, we are asking businesses about current telework practices, expectations about the future of telework, and telework practices before the COVID-19 pandemic. We also are asking about the ability to telework full time for new hires and vacancies. For hiring, we are asking about actions businesses have taken to attract more applicants and the length of time it takes to hire new employees with certain requirements such as professional licenses or advanced degrees. For vacancies, we are asking about how firms are advertising positions that require different education levels.

Have a question or idea for the Business Response Survey team? Email us at BRS_Inquiry@bls.gov.

Percent of establishments that increased base wages (straight-time wages or salary) because of the COVID-19 pandemic, by industry
IndustryPercent of establishments

Total private sector

14.5%

Accommodation and food services

34.3

Retail trade

20.1

Health care and social assistance

19.4

Manufacturing

17.9

Transportation and warehousing

13.8

Educational services

11.8

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

11.5

Construction

11.4

Other services, except public administration

11.3

Natural resources and mining

10.4

Wholesale trade

9.8

Professional and business services

9.7

Information

8.3

Financial activities

7.1

Utilities

4.7
Percent of establishments that increased telework for some or all employees since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, by industry
IndustryPercent of establishments

Total private sector

34.5%

Educational services

62.7

Information

60.9

Professional and business services

53.1

Financial activities

52.2

Wholesale trade

43.9

Health care and social assistance

38.9

Utilities

38.7

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

33.4

Manufacturing

30.5

Other services, except public administration

25.3

Transportation and warehousing

23.4

Construction

16.8

Retail trade

14.9

Natural resources and mining

12.2

Accommodation and food services

3.6
Percent of establishments with increased telework that expect the increase to continue when the pandemic is over, by state
StatePercent of establishments

Alabama

Alaska

60.1

Arizona

68.1

Arkansas

51.9

California

67.4

Colorado

68.0

Connecticut

67.0

Delaware

60.8

District of Columbia

76.7

Florida

59.0

Georgia

56.6

Hawaii

65.0

Idaho

59.0

Illinois

69.3

Indiana

60.2

Iowa

53.6

Kansas

63.3

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

55.8

Maryland

66.4

Massachusetts

59.7

Michigan

56.4

Minnesota

67.2

Mississippi

Missouri

64.4

Montana

59.2

Nebraska

54.2

Nevada

55.0

New Hampshire

54.3

New Jersey

New Mexico

59.4

New York

52.1

North Carolina

68.5

North Dakota

56.6

Ohio

44.4

Oklahoma

57.3

Oregon

65.2

Pennsylvania

65.2

Rhode Island

64.8

South Carolina

64.7

South Dakota

56.2

Tennessee

56.7

Texas

54.9

Utah

59.4

Vermont

54.4

Virginia

64.7

Washington

63.5

West Virginia

36.4

Wisconsin

51.0

Wyoming

56.4

Puerto Rico

44.4
Percent of establishments that offered any employees a financial incentive, paid time off, or permitted employees to remain on the clock to get a COVID-19 vaccination, by state
StatePercent of establishments

Alabama

23.3

Alaska

22.6

Arizona

28.8

Arkansas

27.0

California

39.2

Colorado

25.7

Connecticut

29.8

Delaware

27.1

District of Columbia

37.9

Florida

25.2

Georgia

24.6

Hawaii

31.0

Idaho

21.0

Illinois

25.9

Indiana

20.0

Iowa

27.1

Kansas

23.2

Kentucky

21.8

Louisiana

23.1

Maine

25.2

Maryland

31.3

Massachusetts

30.4

Michigan

22.8

Minnesota

23.6

Mississippi

23.1

Missouri

25.7

Montana

19.4

Nebraska

22.1

Nevada

31.2

New Hampshire

26.7

New Jersey

27.6

New Mexico

27.0

New York

30.6

North Carolina

28.8

North Dakota

16.0

Ohio

23.2

Oklahoma

23.9

Oregon

26.5

Pennsylvania

27.1

Rhode Island

28.5

South Carolina

26.3

South Dakota

18.1

Tennessee

28.6

Texas

25.7

Utah

21.5

Vermont

27.1

Virginia

30.8

Washington

32.8

West Virginia

23.5

Wisconsin

21.0

Wyoming

20.6

Puerto Rico

49.3