Many businesses in the United States have been affected by the pandemic. Big industries such as the airline and retail industries are losing billions of dollars due to quarantine restrictions. Many employees from such industries are also at risk of losing their jobs.
However, big companies are not the only ones affected by the pandemic. Small businesses are taking a significant hit as well.
Over 90% of businesses in the US are small businesses. That’s about 30 million businesses scattered all over the continent. During the start of the pandemic back in 2020, many businesses were forced to temporarily closed. However, right after quarantine restrictions were lifted, about 60% of these businesses are in danger of never opening their doors again, endangering many Americans’ livelihood. Many surviving businesses were forced to take a stand. They started to adapt to the changing circumstances and have begun to handle the pandemic instead of fearing it. Here are some ways businesses are handling COVID-19.
Work From Home
Many companies have started to implement a work from home policy ever since the start of the pandemic. This decision was tough on the CEOs of these companies. Traditional versus digital offices’ thought came to mind, and no one was entirely ready for the transition.
However, big companies such as Facebook and Twitter decided to be one of the first companies to transition.
When companies decided to implement a work from home policy for their employees to work during the pandemic, no one expected their employees to be crafty about it. Facebook had to handle one of the biggest pain points of such a transition: employees moving to states with a lower cost of living. It’s smart and beneficial for employees. However, it’s not very beneficial for the company. The main problem with employees moving to another state is that they wouldn’t easily report for meetings.
Sure, everyone can have a digital meeting nowadays. However, traditional meetings are still essential, especially when the reports are strictly confidential. And then there are the legal implications of moving from a state and still having the same salary. Salary taxes needed to be adjusted and worked on by Facebook’s human resource department. In the end, anyone who planned to move to another state is required to report where they are going to move and why.
There is also something else to get out of this policy, and that is, work from home can essentially become the new norm. About 43% of full-time employees who have experienced working from home now want to do it permanently. Companies can’t complain either because they have seen massive decreases in expenses due to the lack of payment regarding office rent and utilities. Employees are now pushing for this to happen, and companies lack sufficient excuses to stop it from happening. It’s clear that after the pandemic, companies have to handle this new transition into a much newer norm of working.
Some companies that require on-site workers have a new problem of ensuring their employees’ safety from the virus. Infections that happen on-site can bring business operations to a grinding halt as the site needs to be in quarantine alongside all employees that went to work during that period. To avoid this from happening, companies needed to be proactive. Various companies made testing for the virus to be mandatory for their employees.
However, these tests take quite a bit of time. So medical research companies such as Pion Inc. are offering faster solutions for various companies. Additionally, some companies opted to avoid tests from big medical companies and chose smaller ones instead. This is because big medical companies have a huge backlog that they need to finish before giving test results. Smaller companies tend to have less backlog and still offer the same tests, but the results can be delivered faster.
Bracing For Impact
Ultimately, many companies still have to brace for impact to survive the virus. To some, this means investing more cash into their companies. To others, this means getting enough for refunds. Henry Hendrawan, president of Traveloka, explained that the consumers should be the main priority during this pandemic. All efforts must be placed in making them feel like they are being heard. Aside from massive layoffs, the company also offered about 150,000 refund requests for consumers that can’t travel due to the pandemic. These refund requests reached over $100 million, but the CEO stood tall with his choice. Eventually, the company managed to survive and stay strong despite not having the same revenue it had before.
Bracing for impact is an essential defensive measure for every company in the world. There will come a time when there is no solution to a growing problem, and the best thing you can do is mitigate the damage it will do to your company. Finding a way to stay standing is good enough because it ensures that your company can bounce back in the future.
Here are some ways that various companies are handling the current pandemic. Many of these companies are certainly at the negatives when it comes to their revenues. Still, these proactive measures ensure that their companies survive in the long run. Eventually, they might flourish a future without the pandemic, as long as they make the proper decisions along the way.