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How to Grow Your Business During Covid-19

  • by: Conor McKeon
  • On: 25, Nov 2020
7 min read

Thousands of UK businesses have closed and many industries have suffered following Covid-19. Aviation providers such as Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, British Airways and easyJet were amongst hundreds of organisations that cut over 170,000 jobs in recent months.

However, as unemployment rates continue to rise and businesses cope with lockdowns and trading restrictions around the world, many companies are already demonstrating that business can bounce back from the pandemic in a myriad of innovative ways. 

Here are five routes that thriving businesses have been taking to succeed in 2020.

5 Ways to Ensure Business Continuity and Growth Following the Coronavirus Pandemic

1. Government Grants & Furlough

 Make use of financial support offered by the Government in your country. The following business support packages were made available by political leaders around the world:

  • Japan – Nationwide spending package worth 20% of the country’s economy
  • Netherlands – Paying up to 90% of wages for workers for eligible companies
  • Canada – Covering 75% of staff wages for up to three months
  • United States of America – Dedicating over $650billionn of business loans which are not required to be repaid for firms that maintain staffing levels and spend the majority on wages within two months
  • UK – The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme paid 80% of earnings of furloughed staff up to £2,500 per employee per month. 

Countries such as France and Germany have committed to extending their schemes until several months into 2021, and the UK recently followed suit. Many countries around the world are extending existing support packages or creating new funds to weather the economic storm of the past year. The British Government offers over 150 grants to SMEs, including incentives to employ apprentices and funds for disadvantaged entrepreneurs, and alongside the Brexit Business Readiness Fund to help firms expand outside of Europe.

Taking advantage of loans and grants can prove the first step in turning around the financial fortunes of a small business.

2. Hire a Remote Workforce 

Whilst employers have initially been reluctant to embrace home working, the enforced lockdowns and social distancing requirements have acted as a sudden, large-scale experiment on the power of a remote workforce. 

The myth that an invisible employee will expend less effort and work less effectively has been well and truly quashed. Since March 2020, 74% of those currently working report being more productive than when they were working from their office or worksite. In contrast, 15% felt that they produced the same workload as normal, and only 11% found they were less productive.  

Employers have also seen the benefits of a virtual or long-distance workforce. In addition to increased employee productivity, remote or home working delivers:

  • Reduced Overheads – Dramatic reductions in rent and utilities, with several large companies recently announcing the permanent closure of multiple large office spaces in favour of home working schedules combined with brainstorming and collaboration spaces
  • Employee Motivation & Happiness – Staff who eliminate their commute enjoy hours more time for sleep, exercise, family and rest every day, resulting in happier employees who enjoy their work and as a result are more committed and effective
  • Access to Diverse Talent – Employees with disabilities face fewer barriers in joining a new workforce and collaborating on group projects when working remotely, and flexibility will attract untapped areas of the Generation Z talent pool
  • Access to Skills from Around the World – With an internet connection, business leaders can contact anyone, anywhere in the world and work with them through email, phone and video conferencing.

 

With recruitment no longer limited to geography, companies can grow as much as required through the support of contractors. Flexible talent pools can be accessed much more easily, meaning contractors, interim managers and freelancers are able to devote more time and energy to business projects, and juggle the requirements of different clients to ensure optimum project delivery.

3. Diversify

The coronavirus pandemic has provided the perfect opportunity to take a step back and reassess business success: is your company operating as well as it could, what changes could increase efficiencies and reduce costs, and how best could the organisation and its products/services continue to benefit customers?

 A variety of firms have used the reset as a chance to transform business difficulties into new areas of potential success: cosmetics manufacturer Coty CEOs switched its focus to produce hand sanitiser and face masks, and several well-known aircraft manufacturers, Automotive firms and Motorsport teams united to manufacture ventilators after Governments globally issued a call for help with patient care.

Directors considering diversification can brainstorm and assess the following points:

  • How has our market already changed since Covid-19, and what changes are likely to take place following the pandemic?
  • What is our business particularly good at?
  • What resources do we have that we have not yet utilised or could utilise more effectively?
  • How could we quickly and effectively take a new solution to market?

Diversification could empower your employees to build on their existing skills, expand their creativity and connect with and support customers as never before.

4. Recruit from Overseas

Whilst the inability to transport workers across borders during Covid-19 travel bans caused project delays and disruption across markets during the first phase of national lockdowns, many businesses across the globe are getting their international hiring back on track. Alongside effective testing and social distancing strategies, global companies are filling the gaps in sickness and quarantine requirements with migrant and expat workers who can work in isolation or in Covid-secure settings to deliver urgent projects to tight deadlines.

Incorporated in the UAE as an On-Demand Labour Supply company, VHR can provide unlimited residence visa sponsorship for permanent and contract workers. Operating in over 60 countries and with 17 years’ experience in international staffing solutions, VHR has been awarded staffing licenses for a variety of countries around the world. Wherever your business and whatever your need, VHR can quickly recruit skilled talent from anywhere in the world. 

Find out more about VHR’s international contract recruitment services.  

5. Managed Services

 Managed Services in business growth terms translates to outsourcing long-term workforce planning to industry experts. Specialists can not only recruit, onboard and manage new hires, but maintain staffing levels, improve HR and employee engagement processes, and anticipate and address the need for urgent change or new projects months and years in advance.  

The benefits of Managed Services include:

  • Time and Cost Efficiencies – Consolidate recruitment through a single channel to save management time, employee resources and valuable business expenditure
  • Reduced Risk – Transparent, compliant processes to deliver total control and visibility of your workforce recruitment
  • Long-Term Planning – Organise your workforce and plan ahead to eliminate staffing shortages and ensure every new project is equipped with the right talent from day one
  • High Quality Recruitment – Dedicated Account Managers who are experts in their field understand the needs of your growing business. Specialists in your industry can and match the right candidate with the right role, every time
  • Return on Investment – Structured and streamlined recruitment processes improve candidate experience and time to hire, with transparency on all spend and ROI and the ability to continually analyse and improve results.

VHR Workforce Solutions provides Managed Services to suit every business.

Grow Your Business With Expert Advice & Support

Looking to recruit skilled staff? Find out more about VHR’s award-winning recruitment services.

Discover 4 Ways the UK’s Second Lockdown Will Affect Recruitment Strategies. 

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