The BPIF has released the Executive Summary of its Coronavirus Support Schemes Survey. The survey, a follow-up to the BPIF Business Impact Survey, was designed to find out if businesses are getting the emergency assistance they need from the Government.

Taking place across 22 – 30 April it collected feedback and opinions on the main support schemes, how companies were able to access them and how effective they are.

The survey was open to all companies in relevant industries, not just BPIF members. The combined turnover of fully responding companies is over £2.5 billion in businesses employing more than 15,000 people. Three-quarters (75%) of all responses were from companies in the Printing and Printed Packaging industry, the remaining 25% were from the Office Supplies industry. Around three quarters (73%) are remaining partially open and have furloughed some employees. 12% of companies have entirely shut down operations and furloughed all applicable employees.

The key findings included:

Job Retention Scheme (JRS)

  • The HMRC portal has been a success for the majority of responses, almost three-quarters (73%) of companies have been able to access the portal and complete their application.
  • Over 600 redundancies are anticipated once JRS ends, this equates to about 4% of all employees from responding companies; a considerably lower proportion than the 35% of employees that are on furlough (or going on to furlough) and might otherwise have been made redundant already if it wasn’t for the JRS.
  • Almost three-quarters (74%) of respondents would like Government to extend furlough capability as they take time to recover and ramp-up capacity. Over half (55%) of companies would like to have the ability to roll staff in and out of furlough more frequently.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Schemes (CBILS)

  • One-third (33%) of responding companies have applied for the CBILS.
  • Just over one-quarter (26%) of those companies that had applied for a business interruption loan had been successful in their application at the time of responding to the survey. Just over one-fifth (21%) had not been successful and over half (53%) were waiting to find out.
  • Most aspects of the loan schemes application processes were rated negatively.


  • Over two-thirds of responding companies acknowledged that they support or supply the hospitality, retail or leisure sectors.
  • The majority of respondents (62%) have not applied for any grant support. Just under one- fifth (19%) have applied for and received some grant support.


  • The two changes most likely to become more permanent, as identified by survey respondents, are social distancing in the workplace and more clients’ employees working from home – both were selected by 64% of responding companies. A faster digital transformation for meetings, events and training were selected by 45%.
  • The vast majority of companies do not expect demand levels to recover anytime soon. The ‘more than 12 months’ time’ category attracted the largest share of respondents – 27%
  • 46% of respondents have deferred VAT payments, with a further 23% intending to do so in the future.
  • 26% of respondents have taken advantage of Business rates relief with a further 16% planning too.
  • Just under a third (31%) have arranged rent or mortgage holidays, with 12% set to.

‘Our latest survey confirms the acute importance to the sector of the support schemes when so much of the economy is temporarily unable to operate,’ BPIF CEO Charles Jarrold commented. ‘12% of respondees have ceased operations entirely, with a further 73% relying upon the Job Retention Scheme, although there’s clear feedback on the need for greater flexibility within the scheme. The CBILs scheme had significant teething problems but is now becoming more effective, although we have significant reservations about debt being offered as support, rather than grants and other direct relief.  Finally, with the vast majority of companies not expecting demand to recover any time soon, support schemes must stay in place to avoid large scale company failures and job losses while the economy recovers.  Ours is a resilient and innovative sector, but it will need time to recover.’