BUSINESS CONTINUITY DURING THE COVID19 CRISIS
March 16, 2020
As viruses know no borders, coronavirus will probably reach every country sooner or later and some measure of disruption is inevitable when it does. Besides the human impact, there are also significant commercial consequences being felt around the world.
To overcome challenges (operational or financial) it’s important to quickly take a pragmatic view of current options. Identify business opportunities for strategic change and execute them to achieve concrete results. The aim is to establish solid ground for a turnaround by assessing your liquidity position and creating a stakeholder management plan.
Focus on the key questions through the critical stages of change management such as:
• Are my cash and cash flow positions secured?
• How can I quickly and effectively evaluate my alternatives?
• How can I preserve the business and estimate its financial situation?
• What are the financial retributions of several options?
• How do I assure sufficient delivery of the turnaround strategy?
• What risks and costs are associated with each option?
Companies should also consider the probable impact on their “human” operations and act now to reduce risks. There are important ways in which businesses and employers can prepare themselves.
Firstly, it’s necessary to follow official advice and guidance. Only then you’re able to make proper decisions and arrangements regarding your personnel. How and what employers communicate with their employees about coronavirus is critical. Secondly, if schools are closed or trains cancelled, people will have to stay at home. Therefore businesses must test home-working technology now before it’s too late. Companies should review and discuss policies relating to remote working. Thirdly, businesses with an extensive presence in affected areas must take urgent actions to evaluate organizational vulnerability and offer appropriate support to key stakeholders, employees and customers. Finally, beyond immediate efforts, organizations should use this as a moment to reflect on the capacity to navigate a crisis, going forward and analyse actions to improve agility and become more resilient in the future.
It’s no secret that the coronavirus outbreak is taking an enormous toll on the economy. Certain sectors and companies are more vulnerable to risk than others and consequently helpless. Most businesses have lost significant value since mid-February, even the biggest ones. According to “The New York Times” Apple has dropped from $327 a share to $274, Alphabet from $1,517 to $1,315, Facebook from $217 to $190, Microsoft from $187 to $158.
But not for every business. Zoom is one of the exceptions. Their shares have risen more than 60% over the last month, to $114 a share. Quite surprising, given the company’s profits have been rather modest. How? Very simple: “work from home.”
Zoom makes successful software that allows users to conduct video-conference meetings from different locations. In a time of restricted business travel and increasing pressure on companies, schools and other public gathering places to put epidemic plans in place, digital companies like Zoom are likely to benefit. Its recent bounce focuses attention on telework, a way of working that has been growing in recent years, albeit more slowly than the technologies that facilitate it.
Because of the current situation, more businesses now allow employees to work from home, and more employees are taking advantage of that opportunity. This is the result of the obvious trend toward living in a fully digital world. There’s no question that the adoption of new technology would make living in this crisis a little easier.
At CONNECTS our primary concern throughout the coronavirus crisis has remained the safety of our co-workers, customers and members. We hope that the situation will soon be stable and improve in time. We advise our clients to use our digital platform and avoid physical contact when doing business. On behalf of CONNECTS, we’d like to express our appreciation towards the working people in the medical sector. Doctors, nurses and many others in the health care are doing everything they can to cure infected patients. They are working overtime in serious and maybe risky circumstances for the well-being of their nation. We should keep this in mind and for this, follow governmental advice to help them.
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