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Post-Covid consumer boom to hit US high streets

·3-min read

Retail, hospitality and tourism businesses will need to ensure staff have skills, attitude and capacity to manage demand

A consumer boom looks set to hit US high streets as "pent-up" spending is released into the economy. Questionmark, the online assessment provider, is calling on employers to ensure they have the staff they need, with the right skills, to take advantage of the post-Covid splurge.

Forecasters have long anticipated that the US economy would grow steadily this year as the Covid-19 vaccine is rolled out. Now many economists predict that a "supercharged rebound" will cause growth to come quicker as "pent up" consumer spending is released into the economy.1

Retail sales unexpectedly jumped by 5.3% in January2 and economists at Goldman Sachs predict the economy will grow by 6.8% during 2021.

To take advantage of a potential consumer boom, retailers, travel and hospitality firms must ensure that their staff are not "rusty" after periods of being less busy:

  • Staff will need to have the skills to ride the wave and the agility to adapt to changing circumstances

  • Any new or temporary recruits needed to bolster capacity will need the skills to hit the ground running

Lars Pedersen, CEO of Questionmark, said: "Greater consumer confidence could mean that ’pent up‘ spending is about to hit high streets. This creates new opportunities for employers in retail, tourism and hospitality and will have a knock-on effect across the US economy.

"By measuring the skills of their workforce, employers can make a meaningful decision on what support their teams requires to make the most of the new opportunity. Where they identify any areas of weakness or vulnerability, they can introduce training and support."

Measuring the quality of workforce skills with online assessments can give employers the information they need to make better people-related decisions. Assessments can identify strengths and weaknesses across teams and business functions. They can reveal which staff have the attitude to adjust to new situations.

Employers can use assessments to create relevant and tailored training programs. Further assessments can check that the training worked.

By testing candidates before making the decision to hire them, employers can ensure that new starters or temporary staff have the skills and attitudes that will ensure they hit the ground running.

The Questionmark enterprise-grade platform makes assessment content easy to create and adapt. The platform automatically marks papers and instantly compiles results. It is easy to spot trends and patterns. When the stakes are high, a range of anti-cheating measures are available.

www.questionmark.com

Ends

Notes to editors

About Questionmark

Questionmark unlocks performance through reliable and secure online assessments.

Questionmark provides a secure enterprise-grade assessment platform and professional services to leading organizations around the world, delivered with care and unequalled expertise. Its full-service online assessment tool and professional services help customers to improve their performance and meet their compliance requirements. Questionmark enables organizations to unlock their potential by delivering assessments which are valid, reliable, fair and defensible.

Questionmark offers secure powerful integration with other LMS, LRS and proctoring services making it easy to bring everything together in one place. Questionmark's cloud-based assessment management platform offers rapid deployment, scalability for high-volume test delivery, 24/7 support, and the peace-of-mind of secure, audited U.S., Australian and European-based data centers.

___________________
1 https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/21/business/economy/pandemic-economic-boom.html
2 https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/17/business/january-2021-retail-sales.html

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210302005145/en/

Contacts

For more information:
US: Kristin Bernor, external relations: Kristin.bernor@questionmark.com 203.349.6438
UK: James Boyd-Wallis: james.boyd-wallis@fourteenforty.uk 07793 021 607
Australia and New Zealand: Chelsea Dowd: chelsea.dowd@questionmark.com +61 2 8073 0527