Business Continuity: Steps To ‘Restart’ Your Stalled Operations!
Returning to normalcy after weeks-long COVID-19 lockdown is the challenge ahead for every industry now!
All operations had come to standstill upon the rapid outbreak of the virus, and no one might have thought about the possibility of normalcy anytime soon.
But things changed all of a sudden!
With the ‘economic revival’ on top of everything, a strong push has come for resuming industry activity at an unprecedented rate.
But the restart cannot just happen normally, as COVID-19 brought about fundamental changes to economic activity, operating culture, societal behavior, and more.
At this point, restarting or re-opening seems to be more like ‘literally’ reinventing!
Turning this into an opportunity, it’s time for the companies to re-think what they thought about before the crisis.
This could be around building digital capabilities, data-driven policies, improved automation, increased agility, advanced Cloud, and more. But uncertainties around the COVID-19 outbreak and the subsequent government-level decisions continue to be the core challenges.
So, how are you dealing with it?
Understanding The Scenarios
Based on the virus evolution and the social response, here are a few scenarios you may consider:
- Flattened Curve: Uncertainty around infection spread, social fluctuations, and economic shrinks make this case.
- Market Uncertainty: Failing response measures, strained societies, and market limitations make this case.
- Improved Pace: Temporary control of disease, state of normalcy, and measures towards economic revival make this case.
- Outbreak Scenario: Further outbreak, the scope of new hotspots, and chances of a rebound in existing spots make this case.
The core leadership has to prepare against these scenarios and come up with a fresh thought.
5 Steps To Make a Kickstart!
These steps help you go beyond any market uncertainty, forming a strong base for your immediate operations:
1. Employee-First Policy
Studies show that employees across the world are currently worried about their job security. So, let your employees be relieved of such concerns. Instill confidence, deal with empathy, listen to their work problems, and build trust with your purpose. Not just employees, think of their households too!
2. Redesign Workspace
Create a collaborative work system that can be a combination of the physical and virtual working models. Surveys show that employees who did not work from home earlier are now more willing to do that. So, prepare teams accordingly for a hybrid workspace model. Build an ecosystem that cares for employees, alongside ensuring the security of devices and workplaces.
3. Go Phase-wise
Reengineer processes and develop an agile environment that suits dynamic conditions. Adopt an innovative business strategy that has critical processes linked and in line with changing market conditions. Build an agile and elastic workplace model. Let processes be driven by digital capabilities, data and analytics. Go for a distributed global services model to de-risk your organization. Prioritize processes that drive additional growth and secure your business at every stage.
4. Cost Reduction to Management
Prefer effective cost management over cost reduction. This could be turning your short-term debts into long-term agreements. Develop a culture of cost ownership and continuous cost assessment. Utilize data intelligence to understand the cost structure and manage liquidity. Protect your liquidity by shifting from short-term protection to long-term investment. See if M&A opportunities can help you in improving the cross-industry ecosystem. Keep a close watch on government programs to be prepared for future changes.
5. Think A Step Ahead
Plan broader business transformation leveraging technology potential. Take a customer-focused approach through improved customer engagement and enhanced responsiveness using AI-like tools. Leverage the complete cloud potential and make effective usage of data and applications. Ensure security, build agility in process chain with an empowered workforce, supported by revised performance metrics.
Take this 5-step approach for a fresh kickstart of your business operations post COVID-19 crisis, leading to effective business continuity.
Business Continuity Resources
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