The coronavirus pandemic continues to gain momentum. Despite the efforts of scientists around the world, it is still unknown how long it will last. But it is already evident that it brings severe economic obstacles and losses. COVID-19 will change the world and business, from geopolitical to organizational aspects. In fact, the market is already evolving, quickly adapting to a new reality with closed borders and remote work.
In a pandemic and forced isolation, the usual structure of work becomes impossible. Many companies do not understand how to adjust their processes further. However, panicking at such times is the worst decision to make. The crisis should be seen as a new opportunity that no one has paid attention to before or wanted to put in the effort and time. Let’s review what challenges the business may face and how to cope with them.
1. Remaining solvent
There is no need to think about reducing profits or bankruptcy immediately. The main task is to find the right approach to save money. It is crucial to analyze how you can increase your budget. If sales have slowed down, it is necessary to consider internal options. It may be better to sell some assets or lease them. Careful records and control of the finances will allow you to identify places where the money is lost, which is unacceptable during the crisis. Be ready for cash flow issues that can disrupt continued operations. Based on the results of the analysis, it is possible to consider the possibility of attracting short-term capital, refinancing debt, attracting additional loans from banks and investors, and applying for state support. In many countries, the governments offered tax holidays and benefits for the quarantine period.
2. Retaining your team
Many business owners react to the economic crisis, almost reflexively. They reduce staff and introduce austerity measures. But people are the most valuable asset of each company. And the most important task during the crisis is to retain talented specialists. In difficult times, people are depressed and worried about the future. Panic moods negatively affect productivity. The best strategy for personnel management, both during the crisis and during financial stability, is direct and straightforward communication. People are waiting for encouragement and transparency in their relationship with management. They are not interested in surprises and unexpected turns.
The employer has many ways that can reduce staff costs without layoffs. And remote work format is one of them. It has always been believed that office work is a strict attachment to a place. These few months have shown that at some points, the efficiency of remote work is even higher. There is more opportunity to concentrate when no one is distracting, and no time is wasted on the commute.
3. Keeping customer trust
Customers are the critical value for the business. In times of crisis, their value seriously increases. To keep your business alive, you should maintain active interaction with them. After all, for customers, the crisis is also a time of change. Their needs change accordingly. The task of each entrepreneur is to understand what has changed and how it has changed. It will help adapt the business to the new needs of the consumers. The best approach is to help customers survive the crisis and make money on it. At the same time, focus on retaining regular and large customers. Use the Pareto Principle to segment your audience and understand who are the 20% of customers who bring you 80% of the profits. Focus on them to keep them, even if you have to work with a zero profit. It is expensive to invest in attracting new ones in times of crisis. Even in hard situations, people will continue to buy but will become more picky and doubtful. Therefore, it is important to develop a new sales strategy, set new priorities, and retain customers at all costs.
4. Moving online
The pandemic forced many enterprises to close. First of all, the introduction of quarantine affected the offline business: a decrease in demand, customer flow, and subsequently, the inevitable closure of trading floors and establishments. Small and medium-sized businesses without a financial safety cushion suffer huge losses. The only way to survive in this situation is to go online.
Of course, there are many ways to transfer your business online, but the fastest and the most economical way is cooperation with marketplaces. A large marketplace is a platform with a wide, loyal audience. So, the main advantage of creating an account on the marketplace is direct access to the site’s audience. Similarweb has put together a list of most visited world’s e-commerce platforms.
The online format will allow you to save both jobs and regular customers. It will also help to maintain sales and attract new clients.
5. Embracing technology
The development of technology has reduced to a minimum time for the transfer of information, the movement of people and goods. And online tools became a perfect solution to keep business alive in the time of self-isolation. In the new reality, businesses need fast solutions for remote work and online trading. Over the past five years, experts have talked about the coming era of digitalization. But coronavirus speeded it up, making artificial intelligence, cloud technology, the Internet of things solutions appropriate here and now. All means of providing remote work have become a necessity. Because of the pandemic, entrepreneurs will massively begin to automate business processes, transfer work online. And therefore, it is vital to invest in CMR systems, cloud data storages, online services, and digital business management systems as soon as possible.
“The key to success here is a reliable partner for providing IT infrastructure that can quickly respond to problems in stability and system management, as well as provide SaaS solutions,” say pro essay writer specialists.
6. Creating a recovery strategy
Every storm will blow over, and the coronavirus epidemic will also be brought under control. But it is vital for all businesses to review and adjust the strategies to maintain business continuity. It is also important to evaluate the effectiveness of the measures taken. If gaps are found, their possible reasons should be understood, which may include untimely reaction, poor infrastructure, lack of staff, or external factors. These lessons can be the foundation for developing new operating policies and emergency plans that will help increase business resilience in the face of future challenges.
The crisis is a disaster for some entrepreneurs and an era of opportunities for the others. The coronavirus recession will not be an exception. The current situation will undoubtedly attract much more attention to the solutions provided by cloud applications for organizing the effective remote work from any place with Internet access. And the main task of every business is to be as flexible as possible to find opportunities in any context.