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DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION

Vaccine or no Vaccine, Business has to Carry on

Large tracts of the local and national economy getting back to a sense of normality will have to do so at a much faster pace rather than holding out hope for a vaccine to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

For the business community, adjusting to a new normal means a greater reliance on online tools to ensure cash flow remains and a even more stringent approach to managing costs so as to maintain margins. 

So, observing the two pillars of profitability and cost,it is the latter that will come into greater focus as the cavalcade negative business confidence reports continues to dominate media reporting around the broader economy. 

Tourism, gyms, cafes and food retail have been among the businesses most significantly impacted through COVID-19 enforced restrictions while businesses that are not so reliant on foot traffic have navigated the lockdowns via working from home.

However, with more and more medium sized business no longer eligible for job keeper support, the need to move to becoming super lean has arrived. 

Firstly, renegotiation is a word every small business owner should have at the heart of any assessment around costs. 

For traditional businesses, this conversation has to start around rent, electricity, internet service and insurances. 

Despite the rhetoric, landlords will bend with greater flexibility if the prospect of a row of empty premises is on display.

For the uninitiated, websites such as Canstar and Finder have comparisons available for electricity and insurance deals which observe month to month payment options as opposed to being locked into a dreaded contract. 

For mobile phone and Internet connection, a month to month phone plan can cost as little as $15 per month with a high-speed internet bundle at $50 per month. It is not uncommon for a local  accountant to identify cost savings that can directly improve cash flow to the tune of thousands of dollars almost immediately. 

Secondly, flexibility in a firm’s operations is key. 

Ensuring the business is on its digital transformation path offers the going concern the ability to scale up, downsize and to adapt quickly to a changing environment. 

Thirdly and finally is maintain connection with customers, suppliers and employees as a priority. 

Arguably the biggest challenge in this current environment is apathy that current levels of economic activity will magically improve. 

The world is in a new normal and it is the best who can control their prospective settings that will succeed.  

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