If you are a small business owner navigating the impacts of COVID-19, here are some resources that you can take leverage to keep your head above water:
Almost every major corporation like Google, Facebook, FedEx, and DHL are offering COVID-19 resources to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This ranges from educational materials to advertising vouchers, along with discounts or even free access to premium services. Search their websites to take advantage of their offers.
Remote Work Tools
The number of companies experimenting with remote work was already steadily rising, but the pandemic has forced most small businesses to fully embrace work from home to survive. SMEs should seize this opportunity to test and tailor remote working tools to suit their particular structures and needs. Online tools like Slack, Zoom, Confluence, and Hubstaff can maximize productivity by enhancing communication and organization.
Educational Resources to Emerge Stronger
Some universities are also offering free online courses, ranging from topics such as business and financial management to entrepreneurship and even happiness. These courses can help you improve business operations while keeping you sane during the lockdown. Check out this list for 1,700 free online courses.
Liquidity has been a major issue during this pandemic. Fortunately, governments have already been tackling this by providing stimulus packages, deferring taxes, lowering interest rates, extending foreclosure moratoriums, and borrowing from banks so they can lend loans to SMEs. There are other ways to finance your company as well, which you can learn more about here.
In addition to stimulus checks, for those who have lost their jobs during the pandemic, some governments are willing to pay up to 80% of workers’ salaries. This is out of an attempt to allow employees to keep their jobs even if their employers cannot afford to pay them. If you have recently been laid off, make sure to check if you are eligible for such support.
SMEs are going to have to stay creative to efficiently manage logistics during this period. This includes adopting new technologies to boost productivity in the supply chain while lowering costs and errors. Shipment tracking systems, the Internet of Things (IoT), and autonomous drones are some of the top technological advances that you must be aware of.
One of the biggest advantages small businesses have is their agility. This comes in handy in a situation like a pandemic since it allows companies to make decisions faster and move quickly. Now is the time to widen your network, find new partners and markets, or even create new products that people may need at the moment.
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