Top 10 Tools for Business Success During a Pandemic
Ranging from payroll to collaboration tools and many other benefit platforms, succeeding in your business during this pandemic has become way more comfortable than ever. The presence of many business services that are available for all will undoubtedly keep your business booming even amidst the global pandemic (coronavirus disease).
It is no news that the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has drastically affected the global economy, throwing many business owners into crisis and loss. Due to this, many businesses have failed (while some may never rise again). However, there are still chances and fortunes for those still battling with loss as this content is contained with the top tools to achieve success in your business in a global pandemic as the case of the coronavirus disease.
Furthermore, these tools can be best outlined as help from big enterprises to smaller entrepreneurs and merchants. They offer this help by providing and discounting their tools for free, below is a comprehensive list of the tools you can make use of to keep your business running.
When a new customer signs up for DocuSign’s e-signature Business Pro product, they will receive a three-month free package. This free package usually includes about 100 “envelop sends,” which means you can have lots of documents for signatures sent out in that particular envelope. This feature is a very great one for entrepreneurs and merchants who desire some legal signatures while they work remotely.
The designers of the most cherished Microsoft OS are offering six months’ assistance to merchants with Microsoft 365 Business Basic (a team collaboration platform). At the moment, you can as well make use of Microsoft 365 Business Basic, which allows for easy access with the Microsoft communication team for free. At the end of six months, if you find the program exciting and helpful, you can proceed with a license cost of $5.00 monthly; this includes web versions of Office programs like PowerPoint, Word, and Excel.
GoDaddy is presently giving out offers for free tools to aid small and growing businesses and online markets. With GoDaddy, you can get a free website cum free access to GoDaddy’s marketing tools like that of Google Business, email marketing as well as Facebook. If you already have a website before now, you can check out on GoDaddy’s social media design tools, which comes with three-month free access (not excluding full access to the design content library).
Moving with the trend, MailChimp is also making offers for a free and custom website domain, which will last for five years (such longevity!). That being said, the leading email marketing platform is giving merchants a tremendous and meaningful way to set up a landing page and e-commerce to hasten the promotion of their business.
Paychex is benefits and payroll platform presently offering State Unemployment Insurance services, three months free for payroll, as well as two consecutive months of free Human Resource support. This payroll platform is also making advertisements for resources and supports to aid the booming of small businesses and subsequently develop a strategy to keep employees working. This scheme will also help reduce unemployment rates while the economy recovers from the pandemic.
Another Human Resource software company that is presently offering free customer engagement tools is Freshworks. Freshworks is a messaging and chat platform that helps clients and vendors stay in touch through digital channels like live chat and Facebook messenger. Freshcaller is very handy for small businesses having less than 50 employees; with this, you can quickly move your call centre to the cloud. This allows you to offer still the same hotline, which can be remotely answered by members of your team working remotely.
One of the most reputable social media management platforms that allow you to be in full charge of your team’s coordination and management is Hootsuite. Hootsuite helps you coordinate what is being posted to your social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram through just one secure dashboard.
While online hackers are always looking for illegal ways to make money by sneaking into people’s accounts, small businesses remain the most common target to these people (sadly, a crisis seems not to change that). To the aid of small and growing enterprises, Cisco is presently offering free licensing of its Duo Security two-factor authentication tool for all small businesses and new customers. During this pandemic, all existing users are suitable to go above their user limit, which includes VPN product AnyConnect, web security tool Umbrella as well as conferencing tool Cisco WebEx.
1Password is a password management tool that helps users to generate passwords to keep their personal information and data safe. This tool is a good option for businesses and can be accessed free with no hidden charges for six months. 1Password will undoubtedly make it easy to share a series of secure logins and many other safety resources with your team while everyone works remotely.
Even during this global pandemic, some companies are still hiring; to this response, Workable has made the process more comfortable with the introduction of free video interviewing software for all customers (both new and old). Organizations can now conduct job interviews virtually through this user-friendly platform. Business owners and Human Resource professionals can also access Workable’s library of COVID-19 response content; here, they will find help for personnel management during this pandemic.
Suggestions on How to Survive a Business During a Pandemic
After being declared on March 11th, 2020 by the World Health Organization (WHO), as a health pandemic, the coronavirus disease has gone on to become a global mega-crisis causing a hold in economic activities due to rising cases in diverse countries of the world. The rising instances have also resulted in lockdowns, widespread social distancing and isolation, international travel bans, and laying off of workers due to the inability to keep them working.
At this point, it can be predicted that the world will be short of leaders and workers alike after the lockdown. However, this can still be managed appropriately by businesses at this period to avoid unwarranted changes in a post coronavirus world as this could lead to some unprecedented circumstances.
After noting the most useful business tools for a period as that of the coronavirus outbreak, it is essential to put them alongside some additional suggestions that can help the business rise in a pandemic as outlined below.
- Put individuals ahead of institutions
This sounds like a reasonable thing and something everyone should know, but the sad thing is that only a few people do it. In a global pandemic and mega-crisis where everyone lives at stake and fears of the unseen, communities are left to put themselves together; families live in strain and stress; it is, therefore, the sole duty of every institution to place the needs of people above their interests.
Since the coronavirus outbreak, many deaths and ills have been recorded, many companies have gone into extinction (and may never return). If you strive at making your own business stand this test of economy, you have to continually let your employees know they are putting the lives of individuals ahead of the company’s. No employee (during a pandemic) will walk out of an organization when he knows his employer cherishes and values his/her existence as much as the life of the customers.
- Cultivate hope, not just confidence
As a business owner, you are already a master of confidence (understanding that starting a business is a high level of confidence). Confidence is what has brought you this far; it is what helps you say to your employees “keep doing this, it will play out. Leave that and do this!”. In a time of crisis and pandemic, confidence is essential. However, you might not go far if you have less hope
Hope (when paired with confidence) is what keeps the employees moving. When you stay hopeful in a period of a global pandemic, you even begin to plan on activities to engage in after the crisis is over. Interestingly, the epidemic will not last forever; hence it becomes your blessing that you have hope.
- Reduce your risk tolerance to zero
This will undoubtedly be more difficult than it might sound. As an entrepreneur, you have adequately trained yourself to take risks (calculated risks); in some cases, you might be immune to danger and the worst case is that you might be addicted to risk-taking. In a period like this, you should know that all your employees want safety and not a strategy; they want good results and are less concerned about tedious procedures. Understand that this is the exact opposite of what you have been doing, but for the sake of your employees and the survival of your business, you need to change ways.
As a business owner, you need to demonstrate to your employees and customers that no risk is worth taking, especially when it involves endangering their lives. Enforce this with policies that reduce the level of risk-taking to zero; for instance, you can institute a system where workers who should be taking public transports home reduce cost by taking taxi rides (also saving them contact with a huge crowd).
- Communicate freely with everyone
In a period like this, your communication skills matter a lot. Many of your workers and customers have issues and challenges they are tackling in their personal lives. In this regard, your mode of interaction during conversations will either break or make them.
Other suggestions include:
- Always do the unexpected
- Focus on the small things
- Always point to the credibility
- Offer personal help to employees and customers
- Cater to the least fortunate
Using the information and guidelines above, it is no doubt that you can duly manage and boom your business in a period of the global pandemic and when there is less economic support.