Riding the wave of unprecedented economic change today
The pandemic has brought challenges, but it also brought opportunities to transform and redefine business.
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Riding the wave of unprecedented economic change today
(Philstar.com) - September 3, 2020 - 9:50am

MANILA, Philippines — The influx of bleak economic scenarios in this COVID-19-ravaged world has been increasing in social media these days. As doomsayers affirm, big corporations and small businesses are filing insolvency left and right. Perhaps it is unavoidable and the powerless might not overcome it.

Businesses perceive that the real root of the problem is the strict enforcement of social distancing. Until medical experts discover a vaccine, it will be the new normal.

"Now, how do you operate your business while implementing social distancing? The answer is simple. Use technology to connect people and businesses without personal or physical contact. Possibly, the other solution is for companies to proactively pivot their business when technology does not solve the problem," said Allyxon Cua, president of Accent Micro Technologies Inc. (AMTI).

Most likely, the problem arises because of either lack of knowledge or the unwillingness or refusal of business owners to admit that there is a new normal that they must adapt to.

Riding the wave of unprecedented economic change today
Allyxon Cua, president of Accent Micro Technologies Inc. (AMTI).
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According to Cua, here are the following measures that different stakeholders should consider today:

1. For business owners

  • Allocate their funds to invest in technology. Applying OPEX instead of the CAPEX payment scheme, such as paying utilities, is more cost-effective.
  • Experts are in pursuit of businesses struggling to stay afloat. Owners must not hesitate to ask for help in digitally transforming their company. Avert the mindset of "business is too small," "too complicated," or "too traditional" to transform digitally.
  • Accept that some companies are beyond the help of technology like construction, hotel and restaurant industries. They can pivot into something similar. For example, construction firms can start manufacturing furniture. Hotels can turn into Patient Under Investigation (PUI) isolation facilities and charge per room. Restaurants can go online to sell food. Jeepneys can be logistic carriers. Turn challenges into opportunities and possibly discover higher profits.
  • Advertise products and preserve the brand name. Be visible in the market and leverage digital platforms to show customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders that business is alive and ready to serve.
  • Go the e-commerce route. Given the situation, customers prefer to purchase online to avoid going out. Businesses do not need to have a sophisticated e-commerce website. As a stepping stone, create a Viber or Facebook group or page and invite friends and start selling products or services. It is fast and economical to implement and the upside is hugely profitable.
  • As much as possible, avoid requiring office attendance if the task does not require it. Taking good care of employees should be one of the top priorities while the disease is out there. Despite putting up acrylic separators or other safety measures in the office, employees are still prone to infection during their commute. The best way is to adopt a work-from-home setup.
  • Treat core people well—unless leaders are left with no alternative but to terminate. Companies will need them when the economy recovers. Besides, there is such a thing as karma.

2. For the government

  • Allocate amelioration money to fund the national broadband network of the telecommunication operators. Better signal drives technology to operate and employees would need it to work efficiently from home.
  • Congress should discuss with telcos such as Smart, Globe, and DITO, to fast track construction of their respective cell towers.
  • Provide businesses and employees soft loans to buy laptops, computers and other technologies for their work-from-home setup.
  • Mandate banks that the PhilGuarantee-backed loans for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) should compel business owners to have a working business strategy in the new normal.

3. For employees, ordinary citizens

  • Employees should understand that their employers are facing a lot of operational and financial challenges today. Moreover, they should give their best at work and offer suggestions on how to help the company innovate or pivot to survive the business disruption.
  • Employees should spend their earnings wisely. If consumer spending goes down, so does the economy. Support local businesses.
  • Plant vegetables or fruits, raise a small chicken farm, etc. with the idea of selling for additional income.
  • Think of a side business that isn’t in conflict with the employer's business nor affect work productivity.

"The COVID-19 situation may be far from over. Businesses need to redefine or think of new ways of doing business to thrive despite the health crisis," Cua said. 

The pandemic has brought challenges, but it also brought opportunities to transform and redefine business. While it is undeniably true that external support can help drive business growth, outcomes are ultimately determined by the level of willingness and preparedness to learn and adapt innovative strategies to thrive in a competitive market.

AMTI, for more than two decades, is one of the biggest, trusted, and most diversified ICT companies in the Philippines and a long-time partner of Dell Technologies. It provides workforce transformation solutions to help companies across all sectors address their pain points and deliver desired business outcomes.

Talk to AMTI now to help you analyze your current workforce situation and remote work readiness to come up with recommendations and solutions tailored for your business.

 

For inquiries, send your emails to inquiries@amti.com.ph.

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