As the world pivots to a new COVID-19 reality, small businesses are helping reduce the infection rate by changing how they operate. We've gathered some resources to help your company follow suit.
As governments around the world close their borders and order everyone to stay at home for the foreseeable future, nearly every business has had to adjust to a more socially distant society as it tries to "flatten the curve" of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19.
Whether your concerns are interpersonal, financial, or operational in nature, we are here to help small businesses like yours deal with the fallout from COVID-19. As businesses everywhere continue to grapple with a new normal that could last months in a worst-case scenario, we've packaged some of the most relevant content from both business.com and Business News Daily to bring you the best tips and services to help your small business ride out this pandemic.
Transitioning your team to work from home
One of the biggest changes in how many businesses operate has been the shift to a remote workforce. Since the idea of social distancing requires that people stay away from large gatherings, businesses are leveraging the proliferation of broadband internet and telecommunications software to keep productivity up without actually meeting at the office.
- Preparing Your Business for Remote Work During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- 11 Methods for Keeping Remote Teams Organized and Communicating
- Overcoming 4 Big Challenges of Managing Remote Employees
- Bad Remote Work Habits and How to Break Them
- 5 Tech Safety Tips for Creating a Secure Home Office
- 12 Programs to Keep Remote Teams Connected
In addition to steps you can take, there are some excellent programs and services available that can help ensure your team has the technology it needs to stay in touch and remain on track. Here are some of our best picks in key areas:
- Best Conference Call Services of 2020
- Best Employee Monitoring Software for 2020
- Best Video Conference Services of 2020
- Best Document Management Software of 2020
- Best Cloud Storage and Online Backup Services of 2020
Ensuring your workplace remains fair
With your employees working from home, the line between a place to relax and a place to get work done may become blurred. As such, it's easy for employees to work too much or too little, causing fluctuations in your company's overall productivity. With firm, yet fair human resources policies in place, you can ensure that everyone is on the same page throughout this crisis.
- What You Need to Know About the Federal Overtime Rules
- FMLA Compliance: What Small Businesses Need to Know
- Why You Should Tell Your Employees You're Monitoring Them
- HR Compliance Challenges Small Businesses Face Today
- 4 Labor Laws You Might Be Breaking
Increasing revenue and cutting costs
To say the coronavirus pandemic has caused major financial panic around the world would be an understatement. Multiple times in recent weeks, the New York Stock Exchange has had to pause trading due to precipitous declines in value, as more and more people sell to get out of a volatile market. With so much financial unrest, it's easy to draw a line from Wall Street to Main Street, as evidenced by the 2008-09 financial downturn.
- How Long Could Your Business Survive on Cash Reserves?
- 3 Unique Ways Small Businesses Can Increase Cash Flow
- How a Cash Advance Works
- What Are Merchant Cash Advances and Working Capital Loans?
- 5 Simple Ways to Cut Business Expenses
- Struggling for Cash Flow? Strategies for Survival
Borrowing for the future
As a small business owner, you're likely very aware of the fact that accruing debt to buoy aspects of your company is a common occurrence. Understanding your borrowing options as a small business owner can sometimes mean the difference between financial insolvency and continuing as a company. To help you understand your options, we've collected the following articles:
- How to Decide Which Type of Business Loan Is Right for You
- How to Apply (and Get Approved) for a Business Loan
- Cash on Call: 5 Super-Fast Providers of Small Business Loans
- Business Loans You Can Get With Bad Credit
Earlier this month, President Trump announced a plan to provide an additional $50 billion in funding to the Small Business Administration's (SBA) business loan programs. These government-funded loans are in place to help small businesses continue operating. Here's what you need to know about this type of loan:
- Why SBA Loans Differ From Conventional Loans
- SBA Loan Default: A Complete Guide for 2020 and Beyond
- SBA Loan Deferments: What They Are and How to Qualify
- What Happens If You Can't Repay Your SBA Loan?
Reaching your audience while keeping gatherings low
Your employees may be stuck at home for the foreseeable future, but your audience is also likely sheltering in place as they wait for a return to normalcy. Pandemic or not, keeping in touch with your current and potential customers can mean the difference between growing a consumer base or letting it dry up. With everyone sitting home and at the computer, a good social media plan helps you reach out to your audience and drive engagement with your brand – without putting people into unnecessarily risky situations.
- How to Use Social Media for Customer Service
- Navigating Social Media After a Disaster
- 17 Tips for Engaging With Your Customers on Social Media
- Social Media for Business: A Marketer's Guide
- How Your Small Business Should Respond During a Crisis
Providing customer service in uncertain times
Good customer service can create a consistent base of returning consumers who will remember how well you treated them during trying times. Now is not the time for your customer service skills to fall by the wayside just because you're working from home. Once things settle down later this year, many of those same people may remember your service and frequent your business as a result.
- Superior Customer Service Turns Crisis Into Opportunity
- How Call Centers Keep You Connected During (and After) a Natural Disaster
- Things You Should Know Before Hiring a Call Center
Along with adopting some steps to make sure your customer service remains on par with pre-coronavirus expectations, here are some of our best picks for services that could help your small business stay on top of its customer service.