Small Business Guide for Reopening After the Pandemic – Are You Ready?
While some states are beginning to let businesses reopen, there are many where business owners are anxiously waiting to open their doors to the public again. When that time comes, it’s important to be prepared. Now is the time to create a business guide that will clearly define how you and your staff can reopen safely and successfully.
The goal is to make the health of your customers and employees a priority while making your reopening profitable. Finding the perfect balance between the two can be a challenge. Here are some ideas that may help to achieve that balance a little easier. Although not all of these will apply to your specific industry, they may serve as an inspiration for developing your own business guide for reopening once the restrictions are lifted in your state.
Rethink the Open Office Concept
Open offices have been increasingly popular in recent years. The concept was originally introduced by early 20th-century architect Frank Lloyd Wright, who believed the design would unify the workplace. Modern designers and architects have continued the trend, believing it encourages collaboration and creates a more relaxed work environment. However, the recent pandemic may have us reevaluating the benefits of the cubicle.
Wright’s vision was to have workstations without walls yet still have open space between them. What has inevitably happened in many open offices is desks are butted up against each other, leaving only a few feet between employees. This concept definitely doesn’t allow for social distancing and increases the potential for the spread of everything from the common cold to more serious illnesses. The cubicle is one option for making employees feel more comfortable about returning to the office.
Embrace Working Remotely
Prior to the spread of COVID 19, working from home carried a stigma. Although some companies experimented with the concept, many business owners felt their employees would be distracted or less productive when working from home. Working remotely was a privilege reserved mainly for high level, white-collar management personnel. According to the 2019 National Compensation Survey (NCS) from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 7% of civilian workers in the United States have access to a “flexible workplace” or remote work. This survey defined civilian workers as private industry workers and state and local government workers.
However, the current pandemic has made working from home a necessity for many businesses in order to sustain daily operations. It has allowed both employers and employees to experience the benefits of remote work. Results of a recent study by Airtasker found that working from home not only benefited employees by eliminating their daily commutes but also increased their productivity. Many tech and digital marketing companies have gone fully remote during the pandemic with favorable results. Some are even considering making it permanent. By eliminating the need for a physical office, their overhead cost could be greatly reduced.
Focus on Delivery and Curbside Pickup
Restaurants and retailers have been among some of the hardest-hit industries during this pandemic. Many have followed the lead of the local pizza places and larger grocery store chains by offering delivery and curbside pickup. Although the benefits of these services are obvious during the pandemic, many are wondering why more restaurants and retailers haven’t implemented these sooner. Even with the prospect of the post-pandemic “new normal”, many people will resume their busy schedules. A greater focus on delivery and curbside pickup can provide an enhanced customer experience that translates into increased brand loyalty and revenue for restaurants and retailers beyond the fast food and grocery industry.
Expanding into eCommerce
Entering the online marketplace can be a lifeline for retailers during the pandemic. It can also greatly expand their customer base, increasing post-pandemic business as well. eCommerce can offer numerous benefits to both business and consumers. It may well continue to make up a large chunk of retail business once the current health threat has been put to rest. If you aren’t currently operating an online store, it is an investment that should be seriously considered when developing your business guide for surviving the financial impact of the pandemic.
Developing Your Post-Pandemic Business Guide
It goes without saying that ongoing cleaning and sterilization processes are key to developing a business guide to opening your doors to the public again. However, this is also the perfect time to reevaluate the different ways you can conduct business. Making changes and acclimating your employees to them can take capital you might not have readily available post-pandemic.
CapFlow Funding Group can help. We are dedicated to providing the short-term working capital you need to reinvent the way you conduct business. Specializing in invoice factoring and merchant cash advances, we will work with you to find the best funding solution.
CapFlow also works with trusted partners to provide other alternative financing options that may be better suited to our clients’ business needs. We service many different industries with a variety of funding needs. Contact us today and find out how invoice factoring can help grow your small business.