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Post COVID-19 back to business as usual – or is it?

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Posted by Maddison Brown on 05 Jun 2020

With businesses opening back up and workers returning to the office or site, one could assume it is back to business as usual for many Kiwi companies. However, with COVID-19 bringing a climate of uncertainty, is it going to be smooth sailing for most?

The truth is, if businesses are to survive, they need to adopt a flexible approach, confronting uncertainty and making bold moves for business survival. Companies that flounder at these uncertain times are more likely to struggle for a more extended period to get back to 'business as usual'.

New Zealanders have always been good at rallying together, and now it's critical to the survival of businesses and the broader economy that we do so. As the economy shifts, so do buying behaviors. Companies need to adapt their approach to the market or risk being left behind.

We've put together some tips for getting back to business as usual - or the new business norm: 

  1. Go digital where you can:

    COVID-19 times have instilled a slight fear of personal contact in some consumers. So, if you can enable customers to access your businesses digitally (think social media, a contact website with examples of your work and testimonials), then you automatically open your business up to a portion of the market who don't want to leave home.
  2. Be agile:

    Use resources that are made available to you - whether it be free advice from resources such as business.govt, Manaaki, or financial support from the Government. You can also check out our other n3 articles, which provide helpful information about how n3 and our Suppliers can help your business.

  3. Look at your bottom line to shave off unnecessary expenses:

    This is where n3 comes in; we are here to help you save money on the essentials you need to run your business. From paper towels to fuel, courier costs to health & safety, you could be making savings on all your business necessities. The things you already purchase, but at a better price.

  4. Encourage staff to be heroes:

    Invite them to look for creative solutions that cost less. Ask questions such as 'how can you bring in some immediate revenue to ease your company's financial situation?

  5. Rethink your customer:

    Times have changed, and that might mean your business needs to as well. Be open to the idea that the needs and wants of your ideal customer may have shifted, and work with them.

  6. Test the water:

    Now might be an excellent time to test the market for a new product idea you've had, especially if it's something that offers a more economical approach to an existing offer.

  7. Communicate: reach out to those around you and other businesses.

    Have positive business-related conversations. It might just be the spark you need to drive you to your next success.

  8. Analyse your customer insights:

    Renew and refresh your connections and your offer so it speaks to what your consumers want now, not what they wanted before.

  9. Look after your employees:

    Where possible, try and hold onto valuable employees. Consider the cost of retraining someone new in the future before letting staff go. Provide support for staff so they feel valued, a small investment in something like an employee benefits programme could make all the difference.

  10. Get efficient with your cashflow:

    Get your invoices out quickly so you can get paid sooner. Talk to your accountant to see whether the new tax changes can assist you, or if you could benefit from the financial packages offered by the government. 
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