Relying on Consultants During the Coronavirus Pandemic
The coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic has impacted travel and movement around the world. Of the more than 400,000 confirmed cases worldwide, more than 18,000 of those infected have succumbed to the virus.
Global commerce and employment have suffered significantly as a result of the pandemic in a number of ways. Consultants in particular have experienced effects to their workflow. As regular travelers, consultants are especially susceptible to the spread of the virus, and the projected financial downturn will likely have an impact on their revenues.
As a majority of businesses express concern about the virus’s effects on their operations, consultants can take the opportunity to ensure their clients’ needs and concerns are being met while also navigating their own operational challenges.
Ensuring the safety and health of employees and staff during this time is the first priority for all businesses. Consultants and the organizations they serve should ensure that staff are accounted for, especially larger organizations who maintain offices in various locations. Identifying local offices in regions identified as virus hotspots is of the utmost importance, as is enforcing travel restrictions, providing remote work options as applicable, and offering resources to assist staff with families directly affected.
Reliance on remote work and digitization during the pandemic may reveal some technological vulnerabilities that can be addressed by each organization. Businesses may need to work to transform their technological capabilities during this time, and will rely on consultants for advice, sourcing and implementation.
Consultants can also help their clients maintain order and efficiency by shoring up disaster preparedness and continuity plans, evaluating and assessing supply chains and cash flow, identifying points of vulnerability throughout the business, and disseminating clear and concise communications around the changing environment. Additionally, organizations will enlist consultants to assist with assessing their eligibility for government programs to offset the financial effects of the virus.
Professional services consultants who address these areas internally, and also can assist their clients and customers in managing these functions, can greatly impact an organization’s ability to not only adapt to the current climate, but to recover and rebound quickly once the pandemic has ended.