The ongoing COVID-19 outbreak has forced businesses around the world to change the way they function. Also, changing consumer behavior, product demands, and the changing economy created a huge impact on the way businesses operate.
Due to Social distancing enforcement, the cities are placed under lockdown, lack of accessibility to physical locations is the main reason behind all the businesses moving to an online model. This shift can open a lot of possibilities.
As a lesson learned from the lockdown experience, the following are the three most important factors essential for business continuity during an emergency.
Many consumers are now ordering everything online right from groceries to cleaning supplies and even gym equipment. Many retailers have been struggling to keep up the demands. But Amazon has seen a rise in their sales since lockdown so much so that they have difficulty in maintaining stock.
They are doing everything to keep up the demand by hiring a new aid in sales and shipments to developing COVID 19 testing labs for their employees.
They are promoting items that are still in stock and in high demand. Making high-demand items more readily accessible on websites or in stores will be greatly appreciated by consumers. This is especially true for higher-risk demographics looking to minimize exposure during the COVID-19 crisis.
The greatest lesson we can learn from this example is the importance of being Resourceful.
Changing the working hours, alterations in the business, and staff operations to meet the customer and staff’s requirements is very important.
Businesses like Costco, Walmart, Target altered their opening hours to meet customers’ demands and also to make sure proper sanitation is being provided for all the employees and customers.
Changing operations have logistic and staff implications. So, you need to make sure to do the research, draw out a plan, and set clear goals.
The more flexible you are, the more it will help to achieve financial stability during an emergency situation.
Ensure proper communication
To set up proper communication with your staff, customers, and all the stakeholders is very important especially during times of crisis.
Management should thoughtfully communicate with their stakeholders considering their geographies, preferred communication channels, and current concerns.
Considered an essential supply store, Costco kept its stores and e-commerce platform fully operational. Despite the high demand for certain products (hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, toilet paper), the company restricted shoppers on the quantity of these products customers could purchase in the store and online.
These changes were effectively communicated to the customers as an additional procedure to help customers during the crunch.
Ensuring proper communication will help you make sure you are touching all major issues and pain points, nurturing a sense of involvement with your stakeholders, and making them feel an important part of the business.
It is due to these three factors; in this crisis situation some businesses have managed to survive better than others.
Now more than ever, it is important for businesses to find ways to be more resourceful, be flexible, and maintain open communication. This will make your business more resilient now, and prepare for further challenges.