Turning into a human tragedy, the Coronavirus outbreak has raised an alarm around the world.
Affecting thousands of people, COVID-19 has affected the world’s economy too. Travel restrictions, quarantines, and social distancing have led to a downfall in business spending and the economy.
People feel that the most affected business would be labor-intensive outsourced call centre companies, as they work with mass agents at job.
Well, several BPOs including the Indian call centre have raised an alarm acknowledging the threat from Coronavirus. They stress the fact that the virus is a danger to humans and precautionary measures are essential.
Nevertheless, what is the solution to the epidemic threat?
Well, the solution to the pandemic is yet to be found, which is why the government is sending the affected and the possible affected people to quarantine. The government has raised an alarm saying it is better to avoid getting affected, which is why mass gatherings have been banned. In reference to the same Gyms, schools, colleges, offices, temples, mosques, etc. have been closed to avoid gatherings.
Looking at the broader perspective, the threat from Coronavirus is not only on life but on businesses too. In this article, we will discuss how the virus is affecting businesses along with the measures that companies can take to avoid a threat to productivity.
Starting the briefing, you need to know that the virus has affected around 1,60,000 individuals already and 6000 deaths have been recorded. This signifies the deadliness of the virus and the essentiality of avoiding the same.
World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, 2020. The virus has brought a negative impact on the economy as the people are forced to be in quarantine leading to businesses being shut down for numerous days.
With schools, colleges, and offices avoiding mass gathering, people are compelled to stay at home and rely on online measures for the things they need. This is the reason most businesses noticed a downfall in their revenue.
Companies that only worked on offline measures are suffering a huge decline in sales. Nevertheless, how can companies avoid the problem?
Well, we have some ideas:
Along with health plans that are basic for every organization, businesses need to have a prepared plan for virus attacks. It is essential to plan before than regret later!
Most importantly, it is vital to have all businesses online. It helps to connect to the customer in cases of lockdown.
Companies also need to work on plans to keep the services alive even at major shutdown. There has to be planning and training on coordinated work from home policy, employee health plans need revision, and there has to be a suitable plan for reaching out to potential customers in case of any lockdown.
Safety is Paramount
The biggest threat to businesses from this virus is that it affects the employee’s health disturbing daily schedules. Since safety is most important, companies should give their employees work from home privilege.
It is easy for call centres to give work from home when they use cloud-based systems. Since the virus can rapidly spread from one infected person to another, thus it is important to not compromise security.
Moreover, providing sanitation help with sanitizers and masks is again a crucial thing. It is equally essential to educate the employees over the safety tips and symptoms of the virus. It helps to avoid chaos.
With the threat of COVID-19 around, it is a miserable situation for businesses to keep working like regular days. Flexibility in working hours and tasks can help here.
For the companies that feel shut down due to the virus attack can go online to avoid communication gap with the customers.
Other companies especially outsourced call centre firms need to make sure that they have flexible work timings and fewer staff in one place.
It is better to use cloud-based systems and handle tasks off-premise, nevertheless if businesses practice in-house operations, there has to be strict surveillance over cleanliness.
Customer and Employee Education
Coronavirus is a big threat to humanity and so it is for businesses. To avoid further destruction it is vital to keep the employees and the customers informed.
Indian call centre emphasizes on informing the customers as much as possible over calls, emails, and texts. Spreading the precautions to take, things to eat, places to avoid, etc. will anyway avoid the virus from spreading more.
The earliest we would be free from the virus threat; the easier it would be for companies to regain their losses. Thus, training both employees over basic sanitation along with keeping the customers informed is indispensable.
The impact of avoiding mass gatherings and taking care of sanitation can be understood from the below picture, which depicts that Corona is more infectious than influenza!
Picture source- mckinsey.com
The Coronavirus is a bigger threat for the older population:
Picture Source- mckinsey.com
Talking about what more can help companies fight against COVID-19, here are the actions to take:
Take Care of Employees:
Organizations at such times need to communicate with their employees and should take care of health rules and regulations reading from local health authorities. The nonessential travel needs a STOP, avoiding the possibility of more virus spread.
A COVID-19 Response Team:
Companies need to dedicate some time to describing coronavirus symptoms to the employees. Not only to the staff but also to the customers. It is important to describe the roles and responsibilities so that when people are travelling or are at work, they know the precautions.
Keeping in Contact with Customers:
To keep the business going as usual even in adverse conditions, it is important to take care of the customer’s demand. How?
Well, predict customer behaviour and try to provide online services. Since customers at such times avoid going out to outlets, so do not let this affect your sales. Make sure you have online services to meet customer requirements. Doing so you save your business from great loss and even earn customer loyalty.
With the threat of COVID-19 creating havoc, 0.3 to 0.7percent of GDP has reduced in 2020 as compared to the previous year. Earlier the economic growth was 2.5%, which reduced to 1.8 to 2.2% due to the virus lockdown.
Talking about China from where the deadly virus started spreading all around, the country is recovering the damage by witnessing a complete economic restart.
The recovery although depends on how rapidly the case of Coronavirus spread will slow down.
Nevertheless, we recommend taking care to avoid widespread. It is better to avoid social gatherings and foreign trips wherein companies can provide great help by providing work from home to the employees.
Thanks for reading!