In an unprecedented way, businesses are being shoved into the digital age, forced to evaluate their digital strategies. The current topic on everyone’s minds is the coronavirus pandemic. It has permeated every facet of our lives and touched every industry and business – for better and for worse. We are being challenged to negotiate a balance between a critical health situation and keeping the economy alive and food on the table for workers. Regardless of whether businesses previously approved of working remotely or not, this current business climate is sink or swim. Companies are rushing to implement a digital strategy and many have found their current operations to be quite lacking.
It is during this time that digital strategy consulting becomes imperative. With each news update, the timeline of COVID-19 stretches longer and longer. As companies ease into their new routines, it is time to consider a long-term plan. Regardless of how long the current situation persists, businesses need a strategy to optimize the use of their resources, sustain productivity and adapt to the challenges of remote work. Additionally, they will need a recovery action and adjustment plan, in preparation to emerge from a disrupted economy stronger.
Does Your Company Have a Digital Strategy in Place?
Your biggest priority should be to quickly adapt your business operations and get them running online if necessary. Restaurants are shifting to take-out, delivery and drive-through only. Retail businesses are relying more on online shopping and delivery. Industrial and manufacturing companies are seeing a major swing in demand and adjusting accordingly. Some are even shifting production to meet the current needs of the healthcare sector as they work to combat the virus. As you adjust to your “new normal”, business consultants can help review your strategy and offer guidance to optimize your operations.
Prioritize Customer Relationship Management
Maintaining current marketing efforts and failing to adapt your strategy will not suffice. However, effective communication can help alleviate uncertainty. You won’t want to prey on fear or take advantage of the situation. This is not a black and white operation where insincerity or pandemic-tailored communication are the only options.
Look past the surface level discussions and find your messaging. What are your customers looking for currently and who are they looking to? Then, consider how you can be a source of assurance and help restore a sense of stability. There is a difference between being an “essential” business and being indispensable. Budgets will be tight and customers will re-evaluate their current spending patterns. However, this doesn’t mean that all operations have to stop. Customer relationship management is more important than ever and this is a great opportunity to focus on building customer loyalty. It all comes down to the value you provide.
Is There a New Need That Your Business Can Fill?
Acknowledge the challenge, identify the need and work to provide value in these new circumstances. Consider these questions:
- How has this current situation affected customer demand and your operations?
- What do you offer in your industry and what sets you apart from other businesses?
- Do you need to shift or expand your service offerings to adjust to the current business and economic climate?
Answering these questions honestly and formulating a plan to address the challenges that arise will help you sustain your company. Additionally, if your business is in a stable place, consider how contributing to relief efforts can fit into your business plan. It doesn’t have to be anything big to make an impact; taking care of your employees, identifying the needs of your community and supporting first responders and healthcare workers are all ways that you can do your part.
Consider Your Current Situation and Requirements
Identify what is lacking in your current digital strategy. Working remotely or shifting your business operations may have revealed holes in your technological infrastructure. Perhaps you need to update legacy systems that are hindering performance. Identify current barriers to success and what you can do to eliminate them.
If you need a better way to track production, inventory, and deliveries, you may benefit from custom ERP software. A CRM platform could enable you to effectively maintain customer relationships, track sales and more. Perhaps you could benefit from system and cloud integration to tie your disparate systems together. In order to better manage your resources, look to available tools and platforms for help.
What Custom Software Solution Could Your Business Benefit From?
The questions and topics raised in this article are to get you thinking about how your business should respond to COVID-19 challenges. To take the next step, technology and software consultants can help you review your processes and come up with a plan to adapt your digital strategy and business operations.
At 7T, we specialize in custom software development, data management platforms, cloud integration, system integrations and more. Additionally, we offer software and technology consulting services. We want to guide your business to embrace innovation, make the most of your resources and create a custom-tailored solution. Reach out to the 7T team today.