How many times we have heard the term ‘unprecedented’ in the last few weeks? 2020 has definitely turned what we considered ‘normal’ on its head, in almost every aspect of our daily lives. Who would have thought the airline industry could effectively come to a standstill, and that large bustling city centres would be reduced to ghost towns?!
The unfortunate outcome of all these abrupt changes is the inevitable slowdown of the economy, felt in almost every market sector in every country globally. We will all feel the flow-on economic impact eventually, if not already.
But in every crisis, there are windows of opportunity. After more than 40 years in business, the team at Conquest have experienced our share of economic ups-and-downs and always persevered with grit and determination. With this insight, we have collated our advice for surviving the economic impact of the crisis, highlighting how the team at Conquest are here to support you through this challenging time.
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As revenues and profits reduce, any company that wants to survive has no option but to look for ways to deliver the same results with a lower cost base. There are many ways this can be achieved, from cutting unnecessary or “luxury” expenses within the business (bye bye espresso machine) to renegotiating supplier terms and focusing the efforts of your staff.
Despite tightening budgets and spending freezes, some companies still find themselves in a position where they are needing to invest in scaling to accommodate new work processes and maintain productivity. Now is a great time to consider ROI. A mechanical floor sweeper or floor scrubber for example, will clean much faster and more effectively than manual sweeping and mopping methods and therefore may actually save you money. Check out our ROI Calculator (link to https://www.conquestequipment.com.au/news-and-updates/4262/calculating-the-roi-of-your-commercial-cleaning-equipment/) for commercial cleaning equipment as a guide.
Alternatively, where you have typically relied on contractors for tasks such as floor cleaning, you may find it more economical to redeploy existing staff with time to spare in the downturn. Equipment on short-term hire arrangements can fill that void, and Conquest provide your operators training to get you started.
LOOK FOR OPPORTUNITES
There are opportunities everywhere, in every situation. The opportunities for your business obviously vary to the next, and unfortunately there is no magic wand solution. But where there is a will, there is a way. Just look at how quickly and nimbly alcoholic beverage and cosmetic manufacturers have adapted to produce hand sanitiser in response to global shortages!
Not every business will be keen to so readily and significantly diversify. But we can all look at our customers and ask ourselves “what do they need right now?”. The opportunities stem from your ability to help fulfil those needs.
For example, at Conquest we have recognised that many of our customers have an increased cleaning need through this time. However, they may not have the right equipment or a fleet sufficient to get the job done without impacting productivity. Our Short-Term Hire program (link https://www.conquestequipment.com.au/about/short-term-hire-solutions/) allows our customers to scale their fleet accordingly without the long term commitment, with terms starting from as little as one day.
CONSIDER YOUR PURCHASE MODEL
Many companies continue doing the same things, expecting a different result. Some say that’s the first sign of insanity! But more likely, it’s simply because you didn’t realise the options available to you.
But the good news is, you do have options!
When it comes to the acquisition of large assets, you have many options… and fixed-term rentals is one worth your consideration.
Equipment rental instantly frees-up capital (which comes at a price!), with a fixed monthly cost that you can easily and accurately account for in your budget. This is especially true for fully maintained agreements, where there is no risk of unexpected expenses attributed to unplanned emergency maintenance.
If you have concerns about committing to a long rental in such an uncertain climate, Conquest can assist with that too. We offer fully flexible, no risk rental packages allowing you to upgrade, change or return the machine at any time in the fixed term, without penalty. Plus, all the maintenance is included in your simple monthly invoice. It’s easy to get started. Just one quick signature and you can be cleaning your floors with a brand-new machine featuring all the latest technology.
UTILISE THE SUPPORT AVAILABLE
Leading governments around the world have shown tremendous support to businesses affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. Here in Australia, both Federal and State Governments have released multiple stimulus packages designed to support businesses through the tough times; retaining jobs and importantly kick-starting the economy when we get to the other side.
Of notable importance to industry is the unprecedented Instant Asset Write Off (link new window to https://www.ato.gov.au/Business/Depreciation-and-capital-expenses-and-allowances/Simpler-depreciation-for-small-business/Instant-asset-write-off/https://www.ato.gov.au/Business/Depreciation-and-capital-expenses-and-allowances/Simpler-depreciation-for-small-business/Instant-asset-write-off/), which now allows most businesses to claim a full tax write off for assets up to $150,000.
If renting just isn’t right for you, this one is! If you are considering any asset purchases before the end of this financial year, make sure you do your research and apply for the benefits.
WIND UP WHILE OTHERS ARE WINDING BACK
The natural tendency for humans is to slow down and go into hibernation when things tighten up. However, there are a number of success stories from other times in history, most recently the 2008/9 GFC, that prove now is the time to start running!
There are effective ways you can ramp up your sales and marketing activities without spending a fortune. The most important thing is to increase your activity, stay front of mind and build your relationships. Without that tenacity, the unfortunate reality is, that you may not have your business.
WE’RE HERE FOR YOU
These are just a few ideas to help you navigate the economic impact felt by every business. While there is a host of information and innovative solutions out there, the most important thing is that you reach out and take advantage of the support available to assist you.
Conquest offer many flexible and effective solutions that can be tailored to your unique situation, and we’re keen to help with all your hard floor cleaning needs. Contact us for a free virtual consultation to get started.
We look forward to seeing you soon (even if virtually)!
About the Author: Finance Manager, Josh Doxey joined the Conquest team in 2018. Josh is a numbers guy, passionate about budgets, and enjoys imparting his expertise to help others. At Conquest, Josh enjoys assisting customers with their purchase journey, whether it be a rental or an outright purchase.