In this edition of Business Day Spotlight, we look at the effects of remote working and potential closures on small businesses, due to Covid-19.

Host Mudiwa Gavaza is joined on the line by Lauren du Plooy, director at accounting software specialist firm Rae & Associates and Intuit QuickBooks trainer.

Listen to the conversation:

The coronavirus outbreak has resulted in a general business slowdown, as well as more people working and staying at home in an age of social distancing.

Du Plooy says coronavirus has had a big affect on small businesses, both in product-based and services industries.

She manages a small team that has been operating remotely for the past four years, relying on tech and cloud applications to run the business, and shares her tips for working effectively in such situations.

She speaks about how they have equipped their own business and clients for remote working.

Along with cloud computing, Du Plooy lists tools that are essential to facilitate remote working, such as instant messaging apps, video conferencing tools and reliable internet access from portable modems and data.

Once the business is set up to work remotely, Du Plooy says businesses should create a handbook with rules and procedures for how work will be handled; select a responsible leader to spearhead the process; set up a communication plan to keep staff updated and motivated; provide training for the tools to be used during that time and outline clear expectations, and learn to trust their staff.

Ultimately, Du Plooy says when the risk of Covid-19 is over, it will have made a fundamental shift in how businesses and organisations think about office space, how people work and the need for having people going to the office each day.

Organisations are likely to consider more remote working options she says.

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Business Day Spotlight is a MultimediaLIVE production.

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