COVID-19 Business Continuity: Three Ways to Build Business Resilience

As companies navigate the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, there are several key issues corporate leaders should be thinking about, as well as steps they can take to not only react to severe business shocks now but also reshape their business and plan for recovery. By remaining agile and alert, business leaders can take steps to build resilience into their operations and mitigate the impact. Here are three ways to build a resilient business;

Workforce Protection and Engagement:
Your people are your most valuable asset. First and foremost, every employee must know what to do, whether for their well-being or those around them. Without proper guidance, training, and open lines of communication, your workplace can be susceptible to hysteria and panic. All concerns need to be addressed in an open, transparent, and fair manner. Implement a robust work-from-home strategy, share all company policies, and establish an internal resilience committee. Leverage multiple channels to communicate information that is in line with public health recommendations on the prevention of pandemic infectious disease outbreak to your employees as well as hygiene and prudent action.

Martin Dufresne

Martin Dufresne, Partner and Design Principal U+A

Transform your business continuity plan:
New ways of working. New responsibilities. New management ideas. To thrive in an uncertain environment, it is essential to manage the day to day running of the pandemic response with a business continuity plan. For many businesses, the approach to business continuity is not robust. Still, C-Suite Executives need to implement business continuity models that should be based on a when and not if scenario. The c-Suite team needs to hold weekly virtual strategy sessions where business continuity during Covid-19 should be the only agenda item. The main pillars that need to be discussed under business continuity are short-term liquidity and action plans to address financial and operational risks quickly. Examine the critical processes required to continue operations, including your supply chain and go-to-market cycles, to identify the areas exposed to interruption. Companies need to implement a risk exposure and measurement plan complimented with an effective crisis communication plan for all relevant stakeholders.

Focus on Data:
In a time of crisis, accurate data and quick insight are essential for a meaningful business response. As coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spreads, companies are using technology to help executives, employees, partners, and customers navigate effectively. Gain insight and assess your exposure to risk. Do weekly commercial performance analysis of your industry. Identify key and valuable data insights tools. Leveraging data effectively can be a critical component of the organization’s success strategy throughout the COVID 19 crisis.

In troubled times, cash controls and visibility are of utmost importance. Sustainable crisis cash management buys valuable breathing space to restructure and refinance. During COVID-19, agility, speed and quality are crucial for enabling the continuity of operations. Now more than ever, the business has a critical role to play in protecting people’s health, bolstering the economy, and developing both practical solutions and game-changing innovations that will shape the recovery and beyond.

About the Author:
Martin Dufresne, graduated from the acclaimed Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism in Canada in the mid-90s before relocating to South East Asia, where he attained his design knowledge on a large scale with HOK Asia Pacific in Hong Kong. Martin also worked in Singapore for three years as Senior Design Architect with award-winning Kerry Hill Architects. After moving to Dubai in 2005, his work has since matured in multi-disciplined on a variety of building types. Throughout his career Martin’s design has been instrumental in attracting highly regarded clients expecting only the most exceptional quality development with an international elegance. He has worked closely and directly with prestigious clients such as Hines US, IBM, PRC, Telecom PRC, China Telecom PRC, Centrair Japan, Aman Resorts Singapore, GHM Hotels, Beaufort Group, HK and Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Company to name a few.