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Although several small businesses have the capability to allow their staff to take care of work remotely,
many companies do not have that luxury and have to bear the burden of losses. Today, small businesses
are facing grim challenges ahead that will require immediate actions.
As much as the government initiatives and legislative efforts matter, small businesses will have to go the
extra mile to maintain productivity and growth altogether. In fact, failure to recognize or adhere to
standard health guidelines set forth by WHO can lead to severe implications for small businesses.
For some small businesses, temporary closure is an option, and for some, it is not. The answer, however,
does not lie in jumping to closing. Sure, the economic distress for SMEs is real, but there will have to be
joint efforts to get through this pandemic.
Here are some of the practical programs and initiatives small businesses can take to protect themselves
from the global pandemic:

Dealing with Reduced Supply Chain

As the disruption of the supply chain begins, the vast majority of the small businesses will have to focus
on targeted lending. Time, however, is of the essence here. And if small businesses want to revert to
normal conditions, they will have to find measures that can compensate or substitute their supply chain
requirements.

Disaster Loans

SMEs can get loans with a lower interest rate through SBA. You can use these funds to take care of debt
payments or meet current payroll needs. The criteria to qualify for the program can come across as
confusing, but the credit can ease the burden of the small businesses. It is true – small businesses are
dealing with unrealistic vendor solicitations. However, access to low-interest disaster loans can prove to
be beneficial.

Income Support Program

As demand declines, several small businesses will have to decrease working hours or dismiss their
employees. Small businesses, however, should expect a light at the end of the tunnel. It means the
rebound period will come sooner than they think where employers can rehire staff.

That said, small businesses would need a systematic approach to compensate laid-off employees.
Similarly, there should be health guidelines in place for employees which employers want to retain for
the foreseeable future. An income tax credit can primarily work as an initiative to provide paid leave and
support.

Postpone Tax Payments

Several small businesses tend to make their quarterly tax payments in April or June. However, small
businesses should not prioritize those payments during a global pandemic that is crunching the liquidity
of small businesses.
Thus, the wise decision for small businesses would be to postpone abatements of those payments. The
underlying purpose of delaying is to get ready if the pandemic forces small businesses to shut down for
an extended period.

Payroll Insurance

Another approach small businesses can take is to decrease working hours and offer support to fill the
need for missing wages. In fact, it is one of the oldest programs in Europe. But small businesses in the
U.S. can make the most out of it to segment working time so that employers can manage their
employees with more flexibly.

Seek Government Targeted Programs

Although there have been a variety of programs in the past to facilitate small businesses, there are less
rigid requirements attached to assisted government programs during the pandemic. Besides, the
enormity of the COVID19 is already forcing small businesses to go into crisis mode.
Therefore, it would not hurt to get help from those targeted programs. However, the applicability of
different programs can vary from state to state. But if your small business is not eligible for one of the
SBA targeted programs, you can address your reasoning for the lack of qualification and get the
necessary help.

Review the Flexibility of Payments

Often, small businesses fail to meet certain payments. But there is only so much help financial
institutions, or the federal government can do to pitch in. Therefore, revise the strategy of those
payments for higher flexibility. Ideally, you should have flexible payment options to survive the COVID19
pandemic. Think of it as a forgiveness period where you take care of only principal payments.

Pay Attention to New Tech Advancements

Tech may just turn out to be the savior for small businesses during the pandemic. It all comes down to
whether or not you are aware of specific technological advancements that can work in your business’
favor.
For instance, business owners can use tracking software to keep an eye on the health of the employees
and accumulate data to see a pattern. Similarly, small businesses can offer mental health guidelines for
the employees.

Surprisingly, several cloud computing agencies are rolling out free services for the duration of pandemic
to help small businesses. So, pursue and make the most out of this type of opportunity to save cost. In
fact, there is a good chance a lot of companies will roll out COVID19 tracking and screening apps in the
foreseeable future.

Small Businesses Cannot Afford to Waste Time

Lenders and small business owners will have to make mutual decisions that work in everyone’s interest.
Naturally, lenders do not want small businesses to face bankruptcy. Currently, small businesses are
informing lenders about the notice, but it should be the last resort.
Small businesses, for instance, should explore the idea of another line of credit to bridge the gap.
Optimism, for example, is another factor that should not dwindle in these dark times. Small businesses
can create short-term company policies to remain optimistic about the future.
Moreover, small businesses cannot risk waiting for more government programs that will prioritize their
needs over corporate interests. Small businesses should not forget the fact that they are one of the
leading forces that run the economic engine.
Concurrently, small business owners should take continuous measures to cut extraneous costs. In fact,
small businesses will have to be creative to generate more revenue and effectively utilize their cash
reserves, which involve credit cards and lines of credit.
It is not the end of the world if a small business fails to qualify for an SBA program. There are already
several programs from tech giants. You can, for instance, apply for relief funds or grants
from Facebook or Amazon as well.
Yes, a lot of small businesses will find the eligibility requirements for SBA programs over the top.
Therefore, business owners should be cautious to preserve capital and remain afloat in the market. As a
matter of fact, some small businesses will have to get help from anywhere they can get during this
pandemic.

Wrap Up

The future of small businesses does not hang in the balance. Nonetheless, you will have to implement
progressive measures to adapt to new conditions. Change, after all, does not exactly pan out as
employers want.
There are, of course, a multitude of unexpected problems small businesses may have to face in the
coming months. However, thin margins should not demoralize employers who still intend to meet their
annual goals. Nevertheless, small businesses will require continuous assistance in some shape or form
from federal authorities.