Post COVID-19 Pandemic what SMEs must do to get adapted to the latest normal

Taarek Hinedi FedEx Express stated that SMEs have huge opportunity for building up resilience as well as ensuring the recovery back up. The Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with Middle East as well as North America for making an approximate contribution worth $1 trillion for the territorial economy every year. However, the pandemic crisis like it can remind us hugely that no economy is safe from turmoil.

While many economies are reviving, the pandemic has radically reformed the way individuals shop and usage products, services and technology. It has also altered how organizations approach their day-to-day business. Many SMEs are quick to act – thanks to either their size or singular focus. This gives them an exclusive opportunity to build business resilience as well as in ensuring the salvage by focusing on their clients, their team members, and processes.

Since social distancing has become the new normal, clients progressively appreciate businesses that use creative ways to engage and indulge them. For an illustration, rather than eat at a restaurant, a family might prefer to create a dine-in experience at home where they are comfortable in their environment.

With changing consumer behaviour, small businesses can take advantage of the new opportunities created by Covid, addressing customers’ new priorities, and maintaining a positive relationship with them. This way, you will be able to retain existing customers and potentially widen your market outside of your geographic area.

No firm, regardless of its size, is immune to an economic or environmental challenge. To advance your team’s continual support in delivering the best service, it’s vital that you are crystal clear from the very commencement about future plans and considerations and seize every opportunity to re-engage with your team.

From an E-Commerce as well as contactless deliveries to digital payments and virtual malls, individuals are shopping for things that reflect their health and safety priorities. Nielsen reported that before Covid-19 only 21 percent of individuals in the UAE shopped online. Today, the number has augmented to 41 percent.

Even as the situation normalises, make it a business practice to keep them informed on how you plan to prioritize their health and safety, especially if their job role requires them to be in the field, interacting with customers.

Do regular catch-ups with your team to make sure they feel comfortable and understand the changes the business is going through. Explain what is expected from them and discuss the pain points or challenges they might face with their work.

Small practical blind spots may turn into business issues in times of crisis, when the organizations are further stretched. For example, if a retailer only stocks products when a customer places their order online, less visibility across your logistics process might lead to delays in scheduling deliveries or miscommunicating the committed delivery timeline.

Understanding the procedures of each department, from the inventory and storeroom management to conveyance and product orders, benefits you deliver a better client experience. Most SMEs are made up of a near knit team, where all members practice an “all hands-on deck” approach to business.

To be better prepared, continuously imagine the “what if” scenarios, such as how your logistics partner can support you in notifying customers about delays in advance or update you on the border restrictions in certain areas.

Covid-19 has revived the importance of preparation and planning for business continuity and recovery. Using e-commerce to bring your services closer to people, being team-focused and having greater visibility across all processes will help to effectively manage demand, distribution, and deliveries.

Where possible, divide the vulnerabilities you find in a process into phases so that you know when something needs your urgent attention. This way, you can make quick decisions and assign additional team support where needed.

Doing so will meet client requirements in a convenient and considerate way, which is key for business recovery. In short, by strengthening and permitting three pillars of business continuity: customers, team members, and processes, SMEs will achieve business resilience, ensure business continuity and emerge stronger despite challenging times.

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