The “New Normal”? Examine Your Costs Now For A Changing Environment

The global pandemic changed the way businesses operate and how we see life. In the heat of the pandemic, a lot of businesses closed temporarily. A whopping 60% of closed businesses will not be opening, according to Yelp. Production lines have been regrettably cut. In spite of it all, others adopted emerging techniques and sometimes a “new normal” to stay afloat.

While the pandemic festered, employers and employees often wondered the way forward and when it would be all over. As much as the pandemic was a bitter pill to swallow for some businesses, it was the best for others who took advantage of it. Covid-19 has birthed talks that were discussed in hush tones and often swept under the carpet.

Now is the time to understand the pandemic’s impact on businesses. It also offers a chance to maintain business agility, as it is now a key for survival in a sea of competition. More so, it presents the opportunity to review your business’ costs post-pandemic.

For your business to thrive, it must adapt to the ‘New Normal’. You must take steps to ensure that your bottom line is not affected.

How are you going to make this possible? You must answer the following questions:

Have you surveyed your workforce to determine if they want to return to the office or work remotely?

As a result of the pandemic, a lot of businesses tasked their workers to continue doing their jobs remotely. While this was perceived as a temporary solution pending when the pandemic will be eradicated, it is fast becoming a new way of working.

Tech giant, Google has adopted remote working for her workforce. After reviewing your workforce you might be able to also. Determine if they want to return to the office or work from the comforts of their homes.

You need to calculate how much FTEs will be split between working remotely or in your office. The risks involving a remote workforce should also be reexamined. One of which includes your cybersecurity. You need to ensure that there are protocols in place to tackle a potential breach.

Is the leased real estate you have in your current footprint necessary for this “New Normal”?

If you are going to be adopting remote working, you will have to deal with a lot of free office space. Now is the time to speak with your landlord concerning restructuring your rent.

These days, not everyone is looking to rent big spaces for their businesses. Landlords will be more likely to renegotiate leases based on these evident changes. They may be willing to extend the lease term and delay the current rent collection. They can add it to the end of the lease.

Have you had a conversation with your insurance providers for property-casualty and cyber coverages?

Your insurance provider should be able to work out the modalities for cyber coverages and property-casualty to protect your business in the event of a loss. The policy that your business currently operates under should be heavily scrutinized. Confirm that your remote workforce does not cause a claim denial. Changes might be necessary to make sure your company is fully covered in the “new normal”.

You should discuss this issue in detail with your insurance provider.

Does your business interruption insurance cover pandemics?

Business interruptions can happen at any time. Due to the pandemic a lot of businesses shut down operations. With a second global lockdown already in view, you need to have discussions with your insurance provider. Now is the time to confirm this carve out does not exist in the policy possibly resulting in a denied claim.

You need to ascertain if your business insurance covers pandemic claims or if it does not.

Have you reviewed your telecommunication needs for a remote workforce?

If most of your workforce will be working remotely from their homes, you will have to reassess your business telecom needs. Remote workers may need constant updates about their tasks and other responsibilities.

There are several solutions you can deploy to achieve this. Your employees could use software like MS Teams. This will automatically direct incoming calls from their office lines to their smartphones. If they have the latest smartphones that can permit a physical sim and eSim, they could receive calls on both lines without any intervention from a telecom provider.

Your remote workers will need to rely on faster internet services to perform their jobs efficiently. Are you going to offer them stipends to cover the cost of that? You need to review and put these things into consideration.

For your business to stay ahead, it needs to keep up with business trends. Answering the aforementioned questions is crucial in ensuring your business does not lag behind.

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Marc Freedman

To help you achieve your company's financial growth goals, Marc serves as our Chief Cost Advisor, providing advice to client management teams. He is highly regarded as an expert in his field, and he frequently collaborates with and contributes to other spend consultants to develop and implement cutting-edge strategies for their respective clients.

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