Inline with the current Government guidance, business owners and managers need to start thinking about what post-lockdown will look like for their operation when businesses can reopen.
How can we re-start our businesses and adapt to the new, social distancing standards we need to abide by?
Here’s a summary of the main areas that, depending on your business and service, you may need to consider:
1. Develop COVID-19 contingency plans
- Rather than waiting for the full on ‘green light’ start acting now.
- What can you do differently and what will you need to provide or to have?
- How do you keep your employees safe and bring furloughed team members back into the business?
- How do proposed changes impact on your data protection policies? For example, remote working, taking credit card payments.
2. Take steps to protect your team
- How can you virtually run meetings/events and sustain remote working?
- How can you reorganise your working space & use partitions or sneezeguards to protect employees and customers?
- How could you stagger/rotate working hours to reduce the number of workers at any one time?
- What social distancing policies should you introduce (eg no vistitors/phsyical greetings)?
3. Minimise risk of COVID-19 transmission
- How can you keep your premises as clean as possible and what personal protective equipment would your staff require?
- Do you need to stagger and manage customer flow and if so, how could you realistically do this?
- Can you rearrange your premises layout to meet social distancing recommendations?
- If applicable, talk to your building services consultants about your duty of care, equipment maintenance and managing movements.
4. Review your post-COVID services
- How will your service need to change to meet the new Government guidelines?
- Are there other ways you can provide your service? For example; drive thru’s, delivery or collections, online shopping/forum websites, partnerships with other similar or complementary businesses.
- Are there packages or changes to prices/services that you could introduce initially that would meet new customer’s needs?
5. Communicate and keep connected
- How will you stay in contact with your team, manage the new working practices and check in and support your employees?
- Do you need new signage or products to direct customers, explain the process/new rules and keep employees as safe as possible?
- Is your website and social media platforms up to date and informative?
- Do you need to organise processes for future events or cancellations?
6. Reevaluate and streamline expenses
- Visit www.gov.uk for up to date information about assistance.
- Talk to your accountant or business support organisations about how to reduce outgoings in the interim.
- Discuss possible rent negotiations with your landlord to assist you in the short-term.
- Requests refunds on future events and pause unnecessary contracts if possible.
7. Invest your time in a different way
- What are the opportunities this situation gives you?
- How can you maximise on your strengths?
- Are there items on your to-do list you don’t usually have time for & weigh you down?
- Think like your customer. What would they really appreciate when you reopen?
We’re all in this together and unfortunately it will be easier for some businesses to reopen than for others depending on the nature of the work.
We are here if you would like any advice about:
- how to update your web or social platforms
- organise COVID-19 signage,protective partitions or queue guards
- create leaflets or posters for reopening/loyalty offers