The coronavirus pandemic sweeping the globe is putting everything on hold. Many sectors, from education to construction to entertainment, have ground to a halt or faced an uncertain future. At the same time, essential businesses are struggling to find a balance between safety and efficiency.
Of course, this kind of operational uncertainty isn't limited to pandemics — anything that makes the world wobble on its axis can negatively impact a business and its functionality. However, a few operational adjustments can help business owners make the most of available time and resources. How can restoration business owners achieve operational efficiency in these uncertain times?
Invest in Worker Safety
Improvements in worker safety will be essential to maintaining operational efficiency through these uncertain times. The same workplace safety rules will still apply, but business owners will need to put new protocols in place to ensure employees can work safely without the threat of infection.
This strategy can manifest in numerous ways, from providing additional masks and protective equipment to creating rotating schedules, so there are fewer employees on the job at any given time. While safety protocols will limit efficiency in the immediate, protecting your workers from exposure impacts your business’ wellbeing over time — because nothing will move projects to a screeching halt like the spread of a virus.
Free up Liquidity Wherever Possible
Paying bills and maintaining payroll is challenging when income streams dry up. In the interests of efficiency, it's a good idea to free up liquidity wherever possible. It isn't always possible to avoid every expense. However, by cutting hard costs and making smarter decisions about significant costs like equipment purchases, it's easier to keep the company's assets liquid and accessible as needed.
For companies that are working hard during these uncertain times, opting to lower hard costs by investing in used or rented equipment becomes one of the most cost-effective ideas. There's no need for a significant initial investment, plus the rental company covers the cost of repairs if something goes wrong. This strategy can help restoration and remediation businesses cover equipment needs for specific projects while remaining flexible over time.
Automate and Digitize Processes
As companies learn to adjust to this new normal, automation is becoming an invaluable tool. Removing the human element from redundant or menial tasks frees up skilled workers for other responsibilities. It also provides business owners more comprehensive control of scheduling, communication and cost management.
It's up to business owners and restoration company managers to take a hard look at their processes and see what could benefit from implementing automation. New technologies might require a significant initial investment, but in cases like these, the return on investment is often quick. That's especially true if the chosen automation solutions allow businesses to continue working where their competitors are affected by shutdowns or delays.
Planning Through the Pandemic
Eventually, things will start returning to normal, but there is always the chance that another time of uncertainty will shake the industry. All these business owners can do is prepare as much as possible and ride it out, capitalizing on opportunities for growth while managing risk as much as possible. With a global pandemic, employee safety and automation are among the best options — though this will look different for each business.
The world is changing, and it's not always easy to keep up, but business owners in the restoration industry can still aim to thrive by making a few moves for a flexible future.