The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has had huge impacts on our lives; from being forced to stay at home, to impacts on businesses and economics. Due to the decrease in the demand for services from many businesses, the unemployment rate has increased sharply. According to BBC News, the weekly unemployment rate has hit about 7 million jobs just in the USA.
To give an example, there are now several travel restrictions being applied that have destroyed the travel and tourism industry and every business and startup working in it. Travel agencies had to lay people off to survive temporarily or shut down completely. The airline industry is also being affected, because the number of flights around the world has decreased by 60%. Meanwhile, the oil and gas prices are at its lowest and countries who rely on the money from selling their oil and gas are resources are dealing with serious economical issues.
The financial stress has made the future unpredictable and it will take years to overcome this economic crisis. In these times, businesses will try to take some actions to survive until everything is back to normal.
Laying people off: effects of COVID-19 on businesses
As a business owner, you can decide to layoff employees, in order to pay fewer salaries when you are having less or no revenues. However, this can increase the workload on your other employees and create dissatisfaction and unhappiness in the work environment. You need to make sure you talk to all of your employees and let them know why you were forced to make this decision and how much you appreciate their work.
If you are going with this choice, you have to make sure you are making people feel good about selves while they are still working for you with more workloads. There are tools and platforms you can use to achieve this goal, some of which we are going to introduce hereunder.
Bonusl.ly has made human resources recognition fun. Employees can give recognition to each other and make the team feel good. You can also reward them with digital gift cards from many different brands or create your own kind of gift — like lunch at a fancy restaurant with the CEO or courtside tickets on a basketball game. Bonus.ly also lets you create hashtags with your company’s core values so that they can be used in recognitions to let people know how they have been attributing to the values and goals of the company.
- Bamboo HR:
Their slogan is “HR software so you can focus on the people, not the paperwork.” BambooHR automates operational tasks and frees HR to perform the big-picture projects that make a difference. Paperless HR seems like a good idea in the times of pandemic that we cannot go out of home and to the office and we have to stay connected digitally.
Xexec is a team engagement platform, through which you can recognize and celebrate your employees’ achievements, and reward them with gifts from brands they love, tickets, and trips. The goal of this tool is to drive engagement in your work environment by making people feel appreciated and encouraging of others as well.
Getting help from tools instead of human resources: effects of COVID-19 on businesses
If you want to lower your costs and spendings while there is not that much money being brought to the company as before, you can use digital tools instead of human resources. Marketing is the area that can be handled with digital and automated tools best. Tools can handle the work of a team and cost much less than what you have to pay for human resources.
Hengam is a smart engagement tool that allows you to send personalized messages to users based on their characteristics and persona. It will take the burden of categorizing users based on their persona off you and do it automatically. You can remind your users to use your app and let them know how you can be useful for them during the time of quarantine, automatically and effortlessly. If you have an app that helps people do something — like work out or manage tasks — you can definitely take advantage of Hengam.
Autopilot is an email automation tool. You can create customer journeys and send users personalized emails to convert them into customers. Autopilot can also be used for creating simple autoresponders.
With ActiveCampaign you can keep tracks of your leads, CRM, and sales. You can create specific rules in the panel so that it can follow up with leads and convert them into users. It is a very cheap tool, but keep in mind that learning how to work with this marketing automation tool may take some time and it is not that simple.
If you run an online shop and sell products through a website, BestPush can come to your help. BestPush is a web push notification service that allows you to send personalized messages to your potential customers. It provides you with smart discount management and automated push notifications for different situations like “abandoned cart recovery” or “winning back lost visitors, to name but a few.
Working remotely: effects of COVID-19 on businesses
This is what most businesses are considering to do in the times of pandemic. However, if you can do it right, you can continue it for a while even after everything is back to normal. When your employees are working remotely from home, you can cut costs like the rent for the office and food and coffee for employees. This way you will be able to save spending money without having to let people go.
However, to avoid a decrease in work quality, you can use tools that help with task management and communication between people.
Trello is a task management tool that helps you or your team define tasks, allocate them to people, create deadlines for each task, and more. You will be able to follow up with every stage of the project and see what team members are doing. It will help make tasks clear for everyone so that they are delivered on time by the task owner.
Slack is a proprietary business communication platform. Different channels can be created on slack for different conversations so that different issues are not mixed up with each other. It can also be integrated with popular tools that are usually used in companies like Trello, Dropbox, Google Drive, Github, and more, to help you have everything in one place.
Zoom is a video conferencing tool that has been trending a lot in the past few weeks. It provides you with features like screen sharing, chatting, scheduling meetings, and high-quality video and voice calls.
Clockify is a simple time tracker and timesheet app that lets you and your team track work hours across projects. It can help you and your team keep track of the time they have been putting on work. You will be able to monitor the time people are investing in projects and it helps you to plan for future projects more accurately.
Monday.com is a work operating system that enables organizations to build custom workflow apps in a code-free environment – to run projects, processes and everyday work. Their slogan says it all: ”Keep working together. Even when apart.”
Let us know what tools you’ve been using during COVID-19 crisis and what are their pros and cons!