This year has been very challenging for businesses across the country, in all different industries. Businesses that have been best able to adapt to these difficulties are surviving the best. As the pandemic continues, businesses have had to make many changes and learn fast in order to carry on. Some of these lessons could be utilised after the pandemic to help your business to be more efficient, productive, and successful in the future. What can businesses learn from COVID-19?
Make use of virtual tools
As offices and shops around the world have had to shut their premises, businesses have had to find new ways to stay in touch with their employees, customers, and clients, even while they can’t be in the same place.
Most businesses have made use of virtual services to help them. Whether you’re having meetings over Skype or Zoom, are working on shared documents on Google Drive, or are making use of cloud virtual services, there are some tools that could still be useful after you reopen your premises.
For example, if you’ve found that having people work from home hasn’t damaged productivity, then you could look at offering more options for remote work. With cloud documents, virtual meeting rooms, and secure VPNs, you can keep staff productive while still being flexible when they need time at home, such as to care for an unwell child.
Could you save money by forgoing parts of your office and going online? For example, if you don’t have clients or customers who come to the office, then you do need reception in the building? A virtual reception is cheaper than in-house staff and office space.
Make Digital A Priority
Businesses who already had a strong presence online have found it much easier to keep working than businesses who have struggled to get their digital offering ready for use.
All businesses should have a website. Make sure that basic information like your contact details, opening hours, and location are easy to find. The website must be functional, easy to use, and clearly express what you do and who you are as a brand..
If suitable for your business, an eCommerce platform is very useful to have. While shops have to close, being ready to sell online has allowed some businesses to stay afloat. When you can reopen, selling online adds another way to sell your products and earn a profit.
If you don’t sell online, you still need to make sure that your clients and customers can easily get in touch with you online. Some people prefer to contact companies online, rather than come to a meeting or make a phonecall. Make sure you are present and active on social media. You need someone to respond promptly to comments, questions, or complaints that come up on your social channels. A chatbot for common questions, such as delivery tracking, can be useful on your website too.
The businesses who have managed the best with COVID-19 difficulties are the ones who have been able to adapt quickly and make changes to their business. For example, restaurants who have been able to support their suppliers by operating as an online deli, or alcohol companies who avoided wastage by making hand sanitizers, have been better able to cope.
While another pandemic on this scale may be unlikely, other changes can happen in the business world at any time, suddenly changing the demand for what you offer. Businesses who are unable to react quickly enough to changes in their industry are unlikely to survive.
Your business needs to be ready to react and adapt, whether you make a big change to what you offer, or make a smaller change to the way you operate. For example, if you have had to close your doors to customers, can you offer a delivery service instead? Will there be a demand for this delivery when you can reopen?
While the global pandemic has of course made things much harder for all businesses, but there are many lessons that can be learned that could be very helpful in the future. By being ready to adapt, your business will be better able to succeed and flourish. The world of business moves quickly, and businesses that carry on as they have always done are the ones who will be left behind and who will falter. If you have found ways to work smarter during COVID-19, try to see what measures you can make use of when the world is normal again.
Author - Chris
Author, Editor, Creator of this website.