Normal business operations have halted as COVID-19 continues spreading across the world. Since experts predict the virus will hang around until a cure or vaccine comes about, startups will need ways to survive the pandemic and volatile economy. The following tips are critical for small businesses and startups as they develop a long-term plan to weather the storm:
The most crucial factor for any business is revenue. Without it, your company won’t be able to run smoothly and provide the best service for customers and clients. As the pandemic continues, all non-essential organizations have had to close and transition to remote work.
Budgeting for this adjustment is essential. You’ll want to have a plan for at least the next 12-18 months, and the best way to prepare is to imagine multiple scenarios. After you have your finances in order, you can plan for the worst possible outcome. That way, you’ll be ready to endure the worst-case-scenario should it happen.
Survival mode for your business means saving as much money as possible, too. Budgeting can help you see what’s essential to invest in and what’s not.
If your budgeting shows that downsizing is necessary to stay afloat, take steps in that direction. You’ll need to cut spending wherever possible to survive the pandemic.
Spending on travel is something you won’t be needing to do for a while. Stay-at-home orders are keeping remote work as the primary form of communication. Video chats or phone calls can replace traveling for meetings for now and after the pandemic. Other areas to downsize in will depend on your business. Do you need to cut salaries or let go of talent?
If you do, this decision will be difficult. You’ll want to be open and honest with employees about business needs. If there’s another option, like temporary leave, you can work with your employees to find the best option.
3. Transition To Remote Work
You’ve likely had to switch to working from home for the past two months. Though stay-at-home and quarantine restrictions are lifting in some areas, you’ll want to keep your remote work setup intact. Social distancing measures and quarantines will likely come in waves. You’ll want everything to remain digital and accessible for when you need to switch back to working from home.
If you don’t already, you may want to look into a company knowledge base, which is a central hub for all your business’s information. Here, you can communicate and collaborate with employees on projects and tasks in real-time. You can also store all the files you need.
When working remotely, you’ll also want to maintain helpful and efficient communication with employees. This time is difficult for many people. Fostering a workplace of support and resources will help everyone cope.
4. Use Resources
Outside resources may provide your organization with much-needed help. For instance, the government is offering grants to small businesses. If you can qualify for an available grant, you should apply. This step can provide extra support.
Another resource to look into is business insurance as relief from COVID-19. With various forms of business insurance, you can apply for coverage of losses. It’s predicted that many companies will start applying for interruption insurance in the coming months as the pandemic continues disrupting all enterprise practices.
5. Watch the Trends
The stock market and economy are good indications of how the country is doing economically. They will continue showing volatility during the pandemic and even after it passes. You’ll want to pay attention to the trends to see when your business has the potential to grow.
During this time, you can also focus on what’s currently in-demand. Can your business cover any services or products that consumers want? For example, cybersecurity is a growing need as cyber threats increase during this pandemic. Online courses, video games, and food delivery services are also on the rise.
The coronavirus is putting all businesses — small enterprises and startups especially — through a hard time. With a few smart tips, you can take the necessary steps to enter survival mode. This process will be difficult but crucial to stay afloat in the COVID-19 era.