17 Steps to Help Your Business Deal with Coronavirus
Social distancing is key
SCVEDC presents the following recommendations to help businesses weather the slowdown caused by coronavirus as recommended by LAEDC. As with any recommendations, we ask readers to evaluate the merit of each, based on their own organization’s needs. Businesses which are experiencing significant economic harm can contact SCVEDC for strategic assistance, confidentially and at no cost, as part of SCVEDC’s nonprofit mission. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance or call our office. 661.288.4400. For local information on the Coronavirus CLICK HERE.
- Employers should establish firm requirements that any sick employees not enter the workplace in order to protect their fellow employees and other members of the public.
- Emphasize appropriate respiratory etiquette (contain coughs and sneezes) and emphasize frequent hand washing by all employees.
- Establish policies and practices to increase the physical distance among employees and between employees and members of the public — social distancing — to reduce the spread of the virus.
- Greet without shaking hands for the near future.
- Perform frequent environmental cleaning of the workplace, especially surfaces that are frequently touched in common areas.
- Install alcohol-based hand sanitizer stations.
- Cross train staff on essential functions to ensure business continuity while any key employees may be unavailable.
- Make available video conferencing software and phone bridges for virtual meetings rather than relying on in-person group meetings.
- Prepare your IT systems to support telecommuting, which typically creates a more resilient business if there is ever an earthquake.
- Install appropriate apps on employees’ phones or mobile computing devices in order to access work and related apps and data remotely.
- Consider moving your phone system and voicemail to the cloud; it is easier to retrieve messages from home and setup call forwarding.
- Consider changing workflow to sharing documents in the cloud, so collaboration is still possible with many remote employees. Ensure you have good security protocols in place for sensitive documents or work streams.
- Move email to the cloud, rather than hosting it on servers at the office. This is more related to other types of disasters that might disrupt IT systems, but is a best practice in our region.
- Encourage employees to move payroll to direct deposit.
- Diversify supply chains to become less dependent on individual suppliers from territories that may be at greater risk of impacts from COVID-19, if your operation depends on such supply chains.
- Plan now for lines of credit / capital, in case working capital and cash flows become impacted by a reduction in consumer demand or a delay in ability to fulfill product or service orders. U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is in the process of making SBA disaster loans available to businesses (decision pending Friday, March 13), and pending the outcome of H.R.6040 the interest rate may decrease to zero. California IBank is another source for emergency loans, via Pacific Coast Small Business Development Corp.
- If you anticipate having challenges with payroll, or if your organization is considering layoffs, please contact SCVEDC immediately and our team will help avoid the need for layoffs.
As a unique private / public partnership representing the united effort of regional industry and government leaders, the Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation (SCVEDC) adopts an integrated approach to attracting, retaining and expanding a diversity of businesses. Our overarching goal is to support the creation of high-paying jobs for our educated workforce, stimulate economic activity that grows the regional tax base, and strategically position the Santa Clarita Valley and its businesses to better compete in the global economy. For more information, visit www.scvedc.org.