Neil Parker, Managing Director BridgePoint Group asks “Coronavirus – were you ready?”
Recently, time was taken to conduct a resilience exercise within the BridgePoint Group. This was to enable the business to plan for a serious outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) (or for that matter, any other communicable condition) in the context of BridgePoint Group and how it may affect the level of service we can offer clients and curb the impact on our business and staff.
The good news for our clients is that because of the way we are set up, it will pretty much be business as usual for us if that day should come. Our staff are also aware of how we will manage if it comes to pass. We are certainly not panicked by COVID-19 and neither should we be. It may yet turn out to be something we need not worry about at all.
The resilience exercise is a worthwhile one in contemplating business resilience generally. You can (and should) do the same.
So how do you begin building business resilience?
You begin by asking – what is my response plan if either the availability of inputs dries right up or there is an outbreak in Australia and the workforce is significantly affected?
Six questions that will need answering or need to be considered are:
- What are the likely impacts on my business? (e.g. cash flow)
- What if my customers or suppliers are themselves affected? (e.g. debtor risk, sales negatively impacted)
- At which point do I need to take action? (has a tipping point been set?)
- What action will be taken?
- Who are all the stakeholders (don’t forget the bank)?
- How, when and what will you communicate with those stakeholders?
Depending on your assessed level of exposure, the justifiable investment of time into this type of thinking will vary.
Though what is undeniable in my view is that resilience planning is anything but a one-time only exercise, it needs to be an iterative process because what we know today, the risks we face today, may not have been known yesterday.
How confident are you that your business will remain resilient in the face of extraordinary external market forces?
If you would like help with planning for resilience, please let us know.