China became the first country that introduced restrictive measures to halt the coronavirus spread at the end of 2019. Starting from January 2020, most countries in the world have begun to impose restrictive measures to control the COVID-19 expansion. As a result of nationwide quarantines, many people have faced significant reductions in wages, unpaid leaves, and the shift to a different work schedule. Thus, the quarantine has affected people's daily lives, as well as their earnings and expenses.
As the coronavirus spread is becoming a more serious problem every day, it is clear that the business world will be the most affected. Due to the economic crisis, both large and small companies lose their finances on renting premises and can't pay staff salaries. The collapse of stock markets, cancellation of international conferences and forums, and the restriction of critical trips for their employees negatively affect businesses and necessitates an introduction of more stringent policies.
The current crisis is a test of efficiency and flexibility in conditions of total turbulence for every business. At the same time, it is an excellent opportunity to learn how to solve the current problems by optimizing and automating business processes. In the context of forced downtime and reduced activity, business leaders strive to introduce new technologies to get out of the crisis updated and with a better quality of organization and management. So, what steps should businesses take to survive the coronavirus crisis?
In a pandemic, it is recommended to control cash flows better and reduce expenses. For that, it is vital to negotiate with partners and landlords on deferred payments. It is necessary to revise and, possibly, reallocate the company's budget to higher priority tasks. Divide all expenses of the company into several categories. Let's assume that the group A includes vital costs for the business flow, B - expenses of secondary importance, and C - extra costs that increase work comfort. So, it is better to start cutting costs with category C.
Improve the efficiency of internal processes. Detect the centers in the company structure that are responsible for soliciting customers. Improve the system of attracting clients. Adapt your business model to the changing realities. Assess market trends, analyze competitors' actions, develop new strategies for the quarantine period, and expand or change product lines. Some of the traditional marketing tools you have used in the past may not work effectively during the current crisis.
Analytics and processes for finding potential customers are needed for the B2B segment, and systematic Internet marketing is essential for B2C. Also, you have to optimize your company staff. For that, make a plan to reduce the number of workers. Unfortunately, the measure of cutting staff can be a necessary solution to some of the financial problems in times of crisis. Think about how to organize the work of the company on the principles of remote work.
It is a job for a company without the need to be present at the office. Employees are in the company staff and receive salaries, but they do not go to the office. Meaningful, creative, and complex work often requires long periods of concentration, when nothing distracts from executing orders. With the advancement of technology, it is no longer necessary to bring coworkers together in one room. Current materials are created online with an option to be edited and shared. Remote work is different from freelancing, which involves completing one-time projects with a fixed or hourly rate.
COVID-19 pushed business companies to adapt to today's fast-paced world quickly. The coronavirus pandemic marks the first time in modern history when business leaders across the globe have to allow their employees to work remotely for an extended period. Eventually, business continuity is a foundation of any company's growth. While the concept of working from your house is far from fresh, not all company leaders have the same opinion when it comes to the internal policies related to remote work.
Many people tend to get a remote job before since it saves time and effort. First of all, remote work implies the flexibility to work from anywhere in the world outside of traditional office space. Secondly, remote employees can devote either 100% of their time to it or only a part. Depending on the business, the company team can either be composed entirely of remote employees or a combination of both office and remote workers.
This shift that we are facing right now implies that at least part of the company's employees has to work from home to ensure business sustainability. The global challenge posed by the spread of COVID-19 is changing the very idea of this kind of work. Many managers face the need of creating a structured remote policy for the first time. The whole world is in crisis, and it is not surprising that remote work solutions for companies are especially relevant now. It is not only a matter of saving the business but a current trend.
The forced transition to remote work is associated with the virus spread, and it is just an acceleration of the process, which is inevitable in any case. Of course, for many people, remote work can be difficult for various reasons. However, the remote strategy makes business more flexible and resilient, while many companies cannot maintain the former service level during this pandemic. But it is not just about business viability. Taking into account the benefits of remote work, company managers should reconsider their attitude to this format.
Remote work is becoming the order of the day. What remote work tips can be relevant now? It has become apparent that many companies have to reconsider their policies, guidelines, technology, and business culture to organize this process successfully. Gradually, more and more companies are adopting flexible policies regarding workplaces and implement the shift in response to the trend of a rapidly growing distributed workforce.
Today, the concept of remote and flexible work is on the rise. Depending on the business nature, up to 70 percent of people work currently from their homes. Many business organizations are now trying to survive and stay afloat under conditions of canceled orders, disruption of supply and production chains, forced staff cuts, and closure of some branches and offices. No doubt that the financial losses of both small and large businesses will be very significant at the end of the quarantine.
According to Global Workplace Analytics, employees in the US are offered flexible or remote options 40% more frequently now than five years ago. World statistics show that most people believe that they do not need to work in the office to be productive. More than half of millennials are convinced that the only tools they need to do their jobs are their smartphones and laptops. As practice shows, business companies consider these facts and act accordingly.
This kind of work creates a new paradigm. Employers provide more flexible work options to attract the best specialists. At the same time, the productivity optimization of remote workers requires a focused effort and constant control. Companies should be willing to provide additional funding to help employees set up equipment, networks, headsets, and remote workspaces. Employers have to provide their employees with the resources they need to learn on their own and use learning databases, including training videos, reference guides, and various publications.
Crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic reveal the urgent need for changes to survive in the 21st century. It is a good reminder that any business must always find a way out, even in desperate situations. Telework is an essential and necessary method to organize a business activity in the current environment. Remote work tips are essential for any company. However, a job from home has some flaws. Remote workers can feel disconnected from the team. They may wish to interact with colleagues more often.
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