Mask restrictions have ended in many regions, travelers are excitedly booking summer trips, concert venues are announcing show after show… it appears that society is going back to normal all over the world after this disastrous pandemic we’ve all endured. If your business was lucky enough to survive and possibly thrive during the COVID-19 crisis, now is the time to take a step back and see how you can set up your business for success in the post-pandemic era.
Yes, you definitely want to improve your marketing strategies and decide which company projects should now take precedence, but have you thought about your enterprise’s budget? To flourish in the post-pandemic era, you need to ensure your business budget is accurate and consider all the ways that you can stick to it. Here are the budgeting fundamentals to keep in mind:
Create/Improve Cash Flow Runway to Withstand an Unexpected Crisis
The coronavirus crisis showed us all how disastrous it could be to not be prepared for the worst. Unfortunately, many companies did not survive the pandemic because they couldn’t successfully pivot their business models in the “new normal” and overhead costs ate up their funds. Thus, now is the time to create and/or grow your cash flow runway so that your business can withstand any unexpected crisis that may arise.
A cash flow runway refers to how long your company can stay afloat and continue paying for overhead costs even when it is not generating any revenue. If you haven’t done so yet, take a look at your business’s financials to see what your cash flow runway might be. It could be until Winter 2022, September 2022, etc. Then think of how you can improve the cash flow runway — for example, consider setting aside a percentage of all future monthly profits in an “emergency fund” for your business!
Automate Processes to Reduce/Trim Operational Costs
Are you thinking of hiring a full-time receptionist to handle customer calls? Are you currently looking for new team members who can send out sales confirmation and check-in emails to customers? There are many affordable software platforms out there that can automate these tasks and save you money on payroll expenses. Rather than having to pay new employees a monthly salary to direct calls and send these kinds of emails, budget-friendly software applications can take over these duties.
The money you save by automating operational costs can be used to further improve your enterprise. For example, you can use these funds to purchase new machinery that will help you manufacture your business’s products quicker. Or, you can purchase an online educational course that will enable you to start offering a whole new service to consumers. Don’t forget that the money you save can also be used to improve the aforementioned cash flow runway of your business!
Ditch the Office and Go Fully Remote to Run Leaner
One thing the COVID-19 crisis taught us is that so many businesses can operate just fine (or run even more efficiently) with a fully remote workforce. If the fully virtual business setup you adopted during the pandemic worked out great for you, stick with it! Think of all the money you will save by not having to pay rent for a large office space each month. You will also save money by not having to buy office supplies all the time. On top of this, you can sell all of your office’s desks, chairs, phones, computers, and printer, or allow your employees to take these items for their at-home workspaces.
Many people now prefer to work from home or have a hybrid work situation due to their flexibility and the fact that they don’t have to make a time-consuming commute each day. You want to do what you can to boost your employees’ morale after this devastating pandemic we’ve all endured, so offer them the opportunity to work from home rather than just choosing whether you will have an in-office or hybrid workforce.
Invest in Your Employees’ Mental and Physical Health
If your team members feel supported and appreciated by your company, their work morale will be much higher. This could directly translate into a boost in motivation that will inspire them to be more productive and strive to work hard to help your business grow and progress. Thus, support your employees in this post-pandemic era by investing in their mental wellbeing and physical health.
There are many ways you can do this. You can buy all of your team members monthly memberships to a local yoga studio or an upscale gym. Or, treat all of your employees to acupuncture treatments, meditation sessions at a holistic center, or passes to a day spa in your area — just don’t forget to add on massage treatments! You can also set up company teams for a local 5K or other fun exercise event.
Set Realistic Budget Expectations for 2021 and 2022
While planning your budget for this year and the next, the last thing you want to do is think that everything in your business will be back to normal right away in this new era. It may take a while for profits to rise to pre-pandemic levels, so don’t set an unrealistic budget and go overboard when planning all of your business expenses. Think about where your company is at, what consumer trends to expect, your cash flow, and what your enterprise really needs to operate. Don’t waste funds on unnecessary costs!
To Wrap It All Up
Every single company needs to plan their yearly budget and do what they can to stick to it. This will help improve their overall bottom line and continue to grow. When setting your budget in this new post-pandemic era, make sure you create or improve your business’s cash flow runway to ensure it can survive any unexpected crisis. Also, automate processes and ditch the office to trim costs. On top of this, invest in your employees’ mental and physical health and set realistic budget expectations for this year and the next. Following these tips will help your business thrive in this new era.