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PwC’s Global Crisis Survey 2021: India Insights

We are pleased to launch PwC’s Global Crisis Survey 2021: India insights, an after-action report exploring how the business community has responded to the unprecedented disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.


More than 2,800 business leaders around the world shared company data and personal insights into the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the future of enterprise resilience. Representing 73 countries and 29 industries, their observations create a compelling portrait of the tactics, tools and processes organisations put in place, of what has worked, what has not and why. With 99 respondents representing Indian organisations, our report offers an analysis of how our business community is responding and how leaders are applying the lessons of this era to prepare for the next disruption.


of India respondents said their organisation was negatively impacted by the crisis

Looking ahead, organisations that apply their freshly minted muscle memory to rethink, reconfigure and reinvent the future are the ones that will thrive. And the good news? After experiencing this disruption, you know more than you think.

Key Takeaways

Organisations with a strategic crisis response plan can mobilise swiftly, stabilise business operations and respond effectively to the shockwaves of disruption.

What should Indian businesses do to prepare for the next inevitable disruption?

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Reconfigure resilience as an enterprise capability
An integrated response is essential to executing a successful crisis management programme and to building resilience.

Reimagine: Hold your organisation to a higher standard of resilience
Organisational resilience is critical — not just to succeed, but to survive

Where to start?

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Learning lessons, finding opportunities

A vital ingredient of resilience is the ability to act on what you’ve learned – to internalise the lessons of crisis, mitigate the challenges and capitalise on the opportunities.

In India, business leaders are substantially more confident than global leaders overall in their ability to evaluate the lessons of the pandemic and put them into action: 92% of Indian organisations said they were “confident” vs. just 75% of global leaders.

India’s business leaders plan to prioritise:

Information security

Enterprise risk management

Cyber security


Emerging stronger from disruption

Top three areas

Broadening their approach to risk and crisis, and applying a holistic strategy to organisational resilience by:

  • Thoroughly examining their response to the crisis 

  • Incorporating insights and lessons learned into their long-term corporate strategy 

  • Actively building muscle memory to strengthen preparation and response capabilities

What is the single most important action your organisation has taken so far in its response to COVID-19?

The leading answer by a landslide: focusing on wellness. From moving to remote work and implementing safety protocols to assisting workers financially, organisations put the spotlight on supporting health and safety.

Some industries were hard-hit; others managed to innovate and thrive. Some states, cities and towns have suffered exponentially more upheaval than others.

Overwhelmingly, though, India’s business leaders across all sectors said their most consequential move was to protect their teams: 90% agreed (58% strongly) that their response to the crisis took into account the physical and emotional needs of their employees.

‘Our employee-first policy boosts morale, resulting in happy, secure employees and a happy, secure customer experience.’

Consumer products and retail HR chief, India

Which sectors have taken the hardest hit?

Hospitality and Leisure

Higher Education

Organisations in these sectors experienced 'negative' and 'significant negative' impact:

Industrial Manufacturing and Automotive
Government and Public Services
Financial Services
Energy, Utilities and Resources
Consumer Markets
Health Industries
Technology, Media and Telecommunications

Is ROI quantifiable in a crisis — even a disruption as devastating as the COVID-19 pandemic?

PwC’s Global Crisis Survey 2021 reinforces what we’ve learned over decades of supporting clients across every sector and through all types of disruption. With organisational resilience built into your DNA, you can emerge from a crisis stronger, prepared to secure new possibilities and ready to take on what’s next.

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This research was undertaken by PwC Research, our global centre of excellence for primary research and evidence-based consulting services.

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Puneet Garkhel

Puneet Garkhel

Leader, Forensic Services, PwC India

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