At first, no one is sure how to react to the unprecedented fear of coronavirus. But the good news is, with a strong business continuity plan in place, you’ll be able to function and survive amidst unpredictable times like this pandemic. Realistically, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for a business continuity plan, but being agile is the best tool you can be equipped with to achieve business continuity.
We leveraged technology to enable a seamless work from home experience in under 11 hours, thanks to the framework to enable this having been gradually developed since September 2018.
In this blog, I will share with you how to expedite this process to achieve the same for your business in days as opposed to weeks or months.
The Two Key Steps of a Business Continuity Plan
While 11 hours to achieve a business continuity plan is a great achievement, working from home is not the same as business continuity for the purpose of this blog. Business continuity is about enabling the business to continue amidst threats such as COVID-19, and frictionless remote work is only the first step!
Our 2018 framework came about when our Head of Operations in Australia, who was conveniently of Philippines origin, headed over to Manila with the intent of establishing a Station Five office.
He was responsible for hiring team members, sourcing suppliers, and commencing the setup of our Philippines entity. There was one key discrepancy between our Sydney and Manila office though, and this was that those based in Manila would work from home.
And it was through this we realised the most important factor in a successful remote work arrangement is communication.
This isn’t just the ability to pick up the phone to remote workers using WhatsApp, it is considering each of the following:
- Daily stand-up meetings
- Weekly project planning meetings
- Fortnightly company wide meetings
- Irregular (ad hoc) catch-ups
- Project and task management
- Time tracking and reporting
- Technology and fast internet
And despite the meetings, it’s also about having technologies in place that enable this, such as:
- Live messaging (Slack, Teams)
- Video conferencing (Google Meet, Teams, Zoom)
- International calls (WhatsApp, standard calls)
- Project and task management (Trello, Jira, Asana)
- Time tracking and reporting (Harvest, Everhour, Toggl)
- Documentation (Confluence, Notion)
The second, and arguably more difficult step to establish, is adapting the business to the coronavirus threat once it has arisen. This includes external facing business functions such as:
- Marketing and Sales
- Products and Services
In any crisis event such as coronavirus, the environment changes, and so too must your business with the products and services it offers.
Naturally, how your business then communicates those products and services to potential customers, and how you communicate your adaptation to the crisis with existing customers, is paramount.
Your plan is only efficient if your team members and assets can function and stay afloat during this disaster!
Like the rest of the world, you’ve worked out that the coronavirus isn’t going anywhere in the near future. So, ensure your plan can sustain your business through this period indefinitely, to ensure you can keep your business alive.
And if you are looking to setup people, systems, and processes to work from home, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for some help. We’re here for you during this period, whether you’re a client of ours or not!