COVID-19 has changed the way we all live, and it will continue to impact our lives for many years to come. No longer will we stand in large groups without thinking twice, and we’ll never take going out to eat for granted again.
If you own a business, surviving COVID-19 will leave lasting scars, but you can use your experience to make it more likely that you’ll weather the storm if another emergency leaves your business in question again.
Integrate Your Tech Systems
Chances are, you had to rethink your workday, as well as your employees’ workdays, during social distancing. As everyone was attempting to work from home, you may have noticed that your tech systems could use an update.
Without integrated systems, everyone has to try and access individual systems separately, which can be nearly impossible to do with a home computer.
A full data ingestion strategy can help your business stay connected and working should the unforeseen happen again. It includes replicating data changes in real-time, support for a broad range of data sources, and the ability to run efficiently nearly anywhere. By thinking carefully about and updating your systems, you can continue business as usual, even if day-to-day life is far from normal.
Beef up Your Digital Security
COVID-19 has exacerbated many of the digital security problems we were already facing. With some businesses closed and others operating differently than normal, it is easy for hackers exploit subpar digital security.
From an increase in email and phone scams to Zoombombing important meetings, it’s important for you to update your digital security measures, and continue updating them so your business isn’t left exposed during both the best and worst of times.
A few ways you can beef up your digital security include:
- Making sure employees are trained in cybersecurity so they don’t open suspicious emails or click on questionable links.
- Utilizing a private cloud provider so you can bypass public internet environments.
- Downloading and updating security programs that regularly scan for threats.
- Hiring a digital security expert to comb over your systems and make suggestions regularly.
Continue Allowing Flexible Work-From-Home Options
Many businesses were forced to allow their workforce to work from home during COVID-19 when it wasn’t the norm before. Getting systems ready and adjusted for a different way of working is a big job, so why not continue benefiting from all that hard work even after social distancing orders have been lifted?
Working from home doesn’t have to be all or nothing. You can require employees to return to the office, but there are many benefits of enabling them to work from home some of the time.
Employees who enjoyed working from home will likely be more productive when allowed to continue working from home at least some of the time. You may find that employees take fewer sick days if they are allowed to work from home, and it just may encourage you to try hiring a few remote employees.
Build More Personal Relationships With Customers
Building long-lasting customer relationships is important to every business, but it’s often something that gets overlooked in the name of spending time on other aspects of your operation. However, your customers likely came to the front of your mind as soon as the COVID-19 crisis hit. You probably spent more time communicating with them and thanking them for their business than ever before. Keep it up!
If you continue maintaining close relationships with your customers, they will help you weather any other storms that may come your way when finding new customers is difficult or unlikely.
Maintain a Rainy Day Fund
Personal finance advice always includes maintaining a healthy savings account. That way, if you lose your job or experience an emergency, you have the cash to cover it.
The same advice holds for businesses.
You should determine how much money you spend each month and triple that amount to determine how much cash you should have on hand at all times. It’s even better if you can save enough to cover six months’ worth of expenses.
Not only will it help you survive unforeseen emergencies, like COVID-19, but it can also give you the confidence to launch a new business, it can help you support your employees during hard times, and it can help with business valuation, should you decide to pursue a loan.
Making it through COVID-19 is no easy feat. Use these tips to ensure your business can weather COVID-19 and any other emergency that may come your way.