5 Ways the Coronavirus Has Affected Small Businesses

It’s no secret that COVID-19 has changed the world. This pandemic has altered the way we live our lives – from how we work to how we socialize.

As a result, small businesses have had to transform themselves, and they’ll continue to do so for the foreseeable future. So what can we expect to see as most states start to reopen?

Take a look at how coronavirus has impacted different industries across America.

1. A Stricter Emphasis on Cleanliness

Most employers have always emphasized sanitation and other methods to keep public spaces clean. That said, no one has ever dealt with a pandemic, so you can anticipate that higher-ups will be on alert for sanitized areas. You may not need to wear a mask while you’re at your desk, but you could have to take extra measures when you collaborate with co-workers.

All small businesses have to develop a strict system that aligns with the CDC’s health recommendations. For example, those who work as servers should wear masks when they interact with customers. It may be a while before we can confidently return to “normal” interactions at school or work.

2. An Increased Number of Remote Workers

Now, more employees work from home than ever before. Last year, only a few million Americans had the privilege to operate remotely – and since March, many more have joined them. This transition hasn’t posed many issues for companies that don’t require face-to-face contact with customers.

Some may create a preparedness plan for their office, while others offer remote work as a permanent option. Either way, we can expect a slow transition into the office. All organizations want to ensure they’ve established the best guidelines for their employees. While some businesses do want everyone to return, others may choose to maintain their current remote routines.

3. Less Money Spent on Resources

In the past, your business probably spent money on various office-related expenses. These costs could’ve included supplies like paper and ink, or other employee-specific items like ergonomic desk chairs. If companies do intend to keep a strong remote workforce, they can save a lot of money on those products. We should see a shift when it comes to how organizations need to spend their dollars.

They may need to create budget space for video chat accounts if they haven’t already. It could become more commonplace to outfit your employees with technology that’s strictly for work, like a laptop or monitor. If a business chooses a fully remote approach, it will save money on office space – but it may still need to pay for shared workspaces.

4. Potential On-the-Job Medical Screenings

Over the next few months, it won’t be a huge surprise to see employers implement ways to manage their workers’ health. While these measures won’t become too involved, companies like Amazon and Walmart have already started to take their employees’ temperatures at the door. These methods will work alongside cleanliness efforts to minimize any COVID-19 risks at work.

Eventually, we won’t need to conduct these tests – but at the moment, they could make a difference for employee and customer wellness. Several small businesses may need to adopt these approaches to ensure they can reopen with much cause for concern.

5. New Takes on How Employees Work

The last few months have shown many companies that they may need to change how they work. A traditional nine-to-five schedule doesn’t suit everyone – and a flexible alternative may be the best way to create a productive workforce at your business. Though some companies can’t evolve their daily routines, others can make a meaningful switch. As a result, some organizations may eliminate traditional workdays altogether.

We could still see a transformation in places like shops and restaurants. For instance, some businesses may decide to offer curbside pickup as a permanent feature. They could also put more effort into their delivery services. In any case, it won’t be shocking to see companies take steps toward a different reality.

The Future Could Be Transformative for Small Businesses

While many small businesses have experienced hardships due to the coronavirus, it’s essential to note that this period won’t last forever. As states continue to reopen throughout the next few months, we’ll likely see some positive transformations for these companies and their employees.

Author Bio:

Dylan Bartlett, aka, “The Regular Guide,” writes about a broad variety of topics on his blog. Check out Just a Regular Guide for more, or follow him on Twitter @theregularguide for frequent updates!

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