Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the economy has to be put on a standstill to curb the outbreak. Although businesses are trying to get back on the feet, India’s GDP numbers have slid to an 11-year low, with fiscal deficits increasing and the country’s rating downgraded. At a time when one in every three small businesses in India is struggling to stay afloat, companies need to reopen their offices to resume their productivity.
However, you cannot reopen your office only based on the lowering of Corona cases in the area. The employees and their families, the local community, the management, and the Government are all stakeholders in this decision. Therefore, to ensure a smooth resumption of office activities, the company must be mindful of the stakeholders. Internally, the company must reshape its processes to perform optimally in a post-COVID world.
As an employer, you will have to manage the needs of your employees from a whole new angle. Globally, employees are going through anxiety and insecurity. This would affect their productivity when they return to work. Companies are using communications and addressing employee concerns more prominently, and revisiting policies like working hours, employee health cover, etc. Putting employees first would mean revamping of processes like redesigning process flows, introducing automation, incorporating safety protocols into processes, etc.
COVID-19 caught businesses off guard, and its future course is just as unpredictable. So, you have to keep your operations adaptable to meet any future surprises. Some of the possible scenarios are a cyclical and seasonal outbreak, a sudden surge in cases, uncontrollable long-term viral chaos, or hopefully a complete flattening of the COVID curve. Bringing more agility in operations will ensure that process cycles are faster and seamless. This will minimize less stock and order pile up in case of future interruptions.
Incorporating Government guidelines
To reopen businesses, you must follow the standard operating procedures compiled by the Government for offices. This includes hygiene related installations, thermal screening, employee entry based on symptoms, health conditions, and residence, readjusting office and lunch timings, video meetings, and other social distancing norms. Following these would require you to adjust your business activities. For example, you may not be able to allow
employees residing in containment zones. To substitute them, you will have to encourage cross-functional expertise among existing employees.
The pandemic shock has already induced businesses to take stern cost-cutting measures. However, as these businesses reopen, a feasible and future-ready cost management mechanism may have to be adopted. You should adopt or refine your cost-center-based cost management. Continuous assessment of the cost center performance and probing cost reduction avenues will instill a more elastic cost management culture in your company. Steps like reducing fixed costs, outsourcing, and technological upgrades will streamline existing processes.
While cost is one improvement area, you can make your business future-ready by revamping the operations with the latest technology. With the latest technology embedded in your processes, you will be better equipped to meet future COVID-like challenges and also make up for the pandemic losses. Applications like Pulse can incorporate itself into business processes and bring out the best from them. From SOP implementation to store operations, safety protocols to credit management, Pulse allows you to use custom-made as well as pre-loaded process checklists. You can control process monitoring, identify exceptions, assign responsibilities for their resolution, and review follow-up, all through the application.
It is getting apparent that operational improvement is going to be the cornerstone of post-pandemic business recovery. And with Pulse checklists, you can build an entire ecosystem of better process monitoring for your company.