Many companies are not expecting COVID-19 related problems such as supply chain disruption, higher inflation, and chronic worker shortages to end anytime soon. As a result, more companies are speeding up the deployment of digital supply chain and procurement applications and services, says a new survey of 250 senior executives by Hanover Research for technology services provider OneStream Software LLC.

Organizations experienced various business conditions since the start of the pandemic, according to the survey. While four out of ten companies indicate they have grown, less than a third of organizations (30%) have shrunk while another third (31%) are still stagnated since COVID-19.

In addition, COVID-19 resurgence has had severe impact on businesses, namely higher operating costs, increased dependence on remote work, and delayed return to office. In fact, three-quarters of companies had to delay their return to the office plans by a year or less and two-thirds of executives. Inflation is another issue. Most companies expect the inflation rate will increase by the end of 2022. However, many executives differ on when it will stabilize, with half speculating 2022 (47%) or later (46%).

To improve operating efficiencies and better control costs, more companies plan to accelerate the rollout of new digital tools such as artificial intelligence, according to the survey.