Getting Back to Business in the “New Normal”
The start of the new decade has been nothing but normal for a variety of reasons. Non-essential businesses and schools closed around the world, professional and collegiate sporting events suspended indefinitely, travel restricted or banned, and millions of people mandated to “safer at home” all due to COVID-19. In the wake of the pandemic, lives have changed and over 90% of small businesses have reported negative effects from business closures, restricted operations, and social distancing.
As restrictions begin lifting and businesses reopen, what does recovery mode look like once people and the economy return to a “new normal”? Although its important to consider the short-term outlook for small businesses, looking ahead to what the future holds is the next right step in any business’ post- COVID-19 restart plan. In order to rebuild, hit the ground running, and get your business back on track, finding the new normal now will be key to a more seamless revival.
For starters, what do the numbers say? The first step in rebuilding is to figure out the financials. How hard was the business hit with lower or no income, how much is left in the reserves, how much is needed to get back to business? Although there are different chapters in figuring out the finances, a good baseline is usually the cash flow statement. The cash flow statement will show the progression of cash during a specified period, including operating expenses, asset changes, and accounts receivable/payable. During COVID-19 with reduced labor costs and sales, inventories modified, and operating expenses still owed, knowing the hard numbers now will help establish next steps. It’s possible the numbers aren’t as bad as you think, or they are, and a more aggressive approach will be required.
With the numbers in mind, it may be necessary to update the company budget. Money may need to be spent in order to ramp up to new standards. Business continuity may also look different with modified floor plans, dining tables moved further apart, and break rooms or waiting rooms limited to reduce crowd capacity will all play a part in how quickly revenue will begin to build. Inventory may need to be purchased, along with rehiring employees that got laid off, so having a clear operating budget and reducing waste can make the most of the revenue that does come back in. Where possible, outsourcing may be a viable option to help restart the operations without upsetting an already lean profit margin.
With the ever-changing logistics of COVID-19, revamping your business model may not be out of the question. If before you relied on in-house personnel and brick-and-mortar offices to drive sales, maybe now is the time to shift to an online-only digital presence. Figuring out how to leverage online tools and resources to better serve existing customers can easily chart a more intentional path to thrive in an online platform.
Serving customers and communities virtually is one of the hallmarks of Randolph Business Resources. We have always served our clients from the heart before COVID-19, and we will continue to do so after. We are here to help every step of the way.
By Susan Amsler
May 16, 2020
Randolph Business Resources, LLC.
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