Tips and resources for coping with COVID 19

Tips and resources for coping with COVID 19

Unprecedented times require flexibility and agility. The businesses that emerge stronger are those that innovate in times of adversity. Here’s a list of ideas of things you may need to consider as well as tips on how to manage through these difficult times.

Things to consider

  • We already know incoming orders for events, exhibitions and tourism have been heavily impacted in addition to negative consumer sentiment in general. The ripple effect will more than likely continue as the government implements more virus control measures.
  • Material prices and business operating costs in general may increase in price as a result of a number of factors, such as the ncreased price of raw materials, increases in sea freight and freight forwarding costs and the significant decline of the $AU against the $US and Euro.
  • Stock shortages due to production delays as a result of manufacturing shut down, access to raw materials and freight availability.

Things you can do to help manage the impact:

  • Manage yourself: Make the time to take care of yourself. You’re no good to anyone if you become ill.
  • Manage your team: Manage staff long service leave and holidays. Reduce production to a shorter work week. Where possible have staff, work from home to reduce risk to the business.
  • Manage your customers: Reach out to your customers where possible to try to understand their plans and help them respond and innovate. This proactive step will help you forecast the impact on your business in terms of resources, materials and cash flow. This is more than just an email to say you are still open. It’s a proactive discussion about how you can collaborate and add value to their business.
  • Work with your suppliers to manage your inventory and mission critical spare parts: Review your materials to see if there are new solutions that might benefit your customers. Seek options for products made locally in Australia.
  • Review your marketing strategy: Does you website rank well organically? Do you have a social media strategy in place? If you’ve got resources with some spare time get them to work on your content calendar. Can you use other cost effective tools, samples, direct mail-outs? Whatever your marketing strategy, make sure it is systematic, measured and managed.
  • Focus on improving your systems to reduce cost and improve productivity: Lead generation, lead capture, ecommerce, quick turn around of quotes, systematic quote follow up, production systems to improve workflow and reduce rework, integration to accounting system.
  • If you don’t have a budget, set yourself one and set up KPI reports so that you have a daily dashboard on leading indicators that are important to your business,  i.e new quotes, new orders, quote to close ratio, invoiced sales, WIP, jobs without action/on hold that can be pushed through the system.
  • Finally sales are vanity, profit is sanity and cash is king so make sure you manage your cash flow.

Useful Resources

Make sure you work with your accountant to maximise the federal government business stimulus package

ASGA: Warwick Ryan employment lawyer for Australian Sign & Graphics Association (ASGA) has put together a comprehensive set of guidelines to assist with the challenges facing employers through COVID-19. (See our article on online news this week.)

If you are a current ASGA member and wish to access the full report please contact Michael Punch

Fairwork Australia:

Beyond Blue:

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