IMA Analysis

Friday August 13, 2021

Vaccination Progress

Preparing for a Third Wave?

As India prepares for a potential third wave, the pace of its vaccination drive is raising concerns. Although massive in absolute terms – the half-billion mark is fast approaching – the percentage-of-population figures are less impressive. Yet there is also reason for hope. IMA’s latest Business Confidence and Performance Index (BCPI) survey, which we ran in early July, suggests that corporate India is well ahead of the curve in getting its employees (and in many cases, their families) vaccinated. The implication is that some sort of protective bubble may be starting to form. This paper summarises some relevant findings.

 High – but varied – rates of vaccination

Reassuringly-high rates of vaccination across groups…    

Corporate vaccination rates, as of early-mid July, were reassuringly high. The average company, in our survey sample of >200, said that 74% of its workforce had received at least one shot of the vaccine – and that 25% had received both (Chart 1).
Splitting companies by their broad grouping – industry vs services, B2B vs B2C, and combinations thereof – there are variations, but not very large ones. Predictably, given their more contact-based nature, the average industrial company has a higher vaccination rate than the average services firm (78% vs 69%). Industrial B2Bs (78%) and services B2Bs (69%) occupy the two extremes of the scale.

…with industrial companies in the lead (but not by much)    

The differences are starker comparing across sectors…    

The differences become much more meaningful when comparing across sectors (Chart 2, above). At over 80% each, chemical, healthcare and industrial companies were well above the average. BFSI and general services stood at 70% each, but IT/ITeS was at just 55%. Given the intensively physical nature of their work, it is surprising that the average construction firm had a vaccination rate of just 70%, but partly making up for this, it had the highest rate (36%) of fully-vaccinated workers.

…with a degree of correlation with WFH shares    

The vaccination numbers are strongly correlated with the share of the workforce currently working from home on a full-time basis (Chart 3). As would be expected, services companies, especially IT and ITeS, general services and BFSIs had the highest WFH shares. Possibly, this reduced some of the urgency around corporate-led vaccination drives and/or requirements.

 Many means, one end-goal

Running camps, paying for vaccinations, and helping with bookings are the most popular strategies    

In terms of implementation, companies are taking multiple – and often overlapping – routes to get their people vaccinated. By far the most popular (75%) is to organise internal camps for employees, and in a fair number of cases, their families, too (Chart 4). Most are also either paying for vaccines, helping people secure bookings, or both. About 40% have organised external camps, but 5% say they are not doing anything specific on the vaccination front.

The contents of this paper are based on the results of the Q2 FY22 Business Confidence and Performance Index (BCPI) survey, which was run in early-mid July, and which received over 200 responses. The full report was sent out to IMA’s Forum members and others who participated in the survey. Please visit to view current papers and our full archive of content, in the IMA members’ Knowledge Centre, accessible via the Login link on top of the page. A podcast version of this paper is also available here. IMA Forum members have personalised website access codes.