With more and more of the population eligible for vaccinations, schools reopened, and new COVID19 treatments on the horizon, it’s time to start planning for what your business will be like post-pandemic. With the worst of the threats now in the rear-view mirror, it’s the perfect opportunity to review what business strategies to keep, or discard. How do you create the best future for your small or medium-sized business post COVID19?
Your review should be about more than just whether or not to make remote work permanent. COVID19 has made everyone rethink their priorities—your employees, your customers, and the influencers in your industry. What seemed so important three years ago may no longer be. Ask yourself—what does my business really stand for? How have my customer’s needs changed? How should I be adjusting my product offerings to lead in this market?
A little introspection and strategic planning can go a long way during a time of big business and societal changes. And when you consider all these changes, you should also be considering how your business technologies—software, hardware, data processes—will play a part in the future you create post COVID19. You could consider a wide variety of options, like new passwordless login technology, or taking all your operations to the Cloud.
Here at Integris, we often help our client suss out some of these issues. Here’s what we recommend you take a look at, as you look forward to the day when the pandemic won’t be dominating our daily lives.
Take the Time to Bring Your Website Up to Speed
Always wished you had the time to clean up your website? This is the perfect opportunity.
- Scrub all expired promotional and dated offers
- Rewrite and repurpose blogs
- Optimize your social media
- Look for ways to expand services after COVID19 is over
- Check all links and make sure none are redirected or broken
- Update your company information including phone numbers and locations
- Consider redesigning any clunky website elements you have
Be ready for the future for your small to medium-sized business after COVID19 by taking this time to update your online resources for customers and clients.
Learn How to Best Position Yourself for the Future of Your Business After COVID19 by Checking Out the Competition
Everyone is in the process of retooling and reconfiguring for a new business landscape.This is a great time to check out the competition and compare your business, products and services with others in your industry. You are looking for angles that will allow you to create a unique value proposition; something you offer that others don’t.
- What does my competition offer that my business doesn’t?
- What unique angle can we offer that no one else offers?
- Is there a customer demographic gap that my business can fill?
- Is a strategic partnership a good idea for our businesses?
Using tools such as Google analytics, keyword research, and trends will help you see what amounts of traffic they are getting. This could give you a hand up in your own planning.
Be ready for the future for your small to medium-sized business after COVID19 by analyzing opportunities with your competition.
Time for a Cybersecurity Risk Assessment
Your business may be slowing down, but cybercrime is just starting to get ramped up. With so many employees working remotely, cyberthreats have never been higher. Increasingly, remote workforces are being targeted by cybercriminals who are cleverly using COVID19 to gain access through an accidental employee breach.
This is a great time to check out your business’ cybersecurity strategies and make sure they are up to speed. A free cybersecurity risk assessment is a great place to start, and a free network audit is a good way to ensure your network can handle the added traffic of your remote workforce.
Be ready for the future for your small to medium-sized business after COVID19 by making sure you have effective cybersecurity strategies in place.
Embrace the Transformation
One of the most significant trends for organizations is the shift to a remote workforce. You may think this is entirely due to COVID19, but the truth is that remote work has been steadily rising since 2005. In fact, between 2005 and 2017 it’s estimated that the number of remote workers jumped 159%.
Following COVID19, it will be clear that organizations can sustain at least a part-time telecommuting policy within the company. This saves the employer money in utilities, increases employee productivity and satisfaction, and gives employers a wider pool of talent when it comes to the hiring process.
Embrace this transformation by giving your employees the tools they need to work from home. You can organize all your remote employee considerations into a checklist, but make sure your remote employees have at least:
- Collaborative cloud-based tools such as Teams and Office 365
- Secured devices
- Secure network access with a VPN
- A working phone
- An accountability system
- Daily meetings to “touch base” with the rest of the team
- High speed internet
After COVID 19 has passed, it’s expected that many small to medium-sized business will be looking at making some positions remain permanently remote or shift to part time-telecommuting.
The best future for your small to medium-sized business after COVID19 is most likely going to involve keeping your employees working from home in some capacity, so prepare for these changes to become more permanent.
This Pandemic Allows You to Touch Base with Customers More Frequently
This is the perfect time for your small to medium-sized business to reach out to all the clients on your list and remind them that you are there for them. Empathy will play a big hand in re-establishing a business post COVID19. Offer discounts, free shipping, long-term financing, or free trials to show your clients and customers that you understand they are in a financial crunch right now. These short-term strategies will pay off in the end, with clients purchasing now to take advantage of your offers. You can also touch base with them just to remind them your business is here for them now and plans to be there in the future as well.
The best future for your small to medium sized business after COVID19 starts with an empathetic response to your clients and customer base now.
Forward Thinking and Strategic Planning to Hit the Ground Running
Little by little, business will begin coming back after COVID19. Creating the best future for your small to medium-sized business after COVID19 starts now. With a little foresight and planning, you can come out of the starting gate far ahead of the competition and turn the pandemic into an amazing growth opportunity for your business. Through smart consolidations in your IT processes, you might find that you’re able to get more IT products and services for less, too. Check out our recent story on 7 Ways to Save Money on IT Services, part of our IT Strategy Essentials Kit, for tips on how.