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As a nation, we’ve no doubt faced a long list of challenges in recent months. The Covid-19 outbreak has tested us both personally and professionally, with lockdown life taking its toll in many respects. As we emerge from lockdown, however, it’s important to see the positives as well as the negatives of this challenging period.

The business community has had to evolve dramatically in light of the pandemic, but could it have changed for the better?

In this blog post, we look a little closer at how Covid-19 could actually benefit British businesses in the long run.

Digital growth

Businesses had to think fast when Covid-19 arrived and the country entered lockdown. One way many companies stayed afloat during these troubling times was to grow digitally.

Whilst operating solely online isn’t suitable for every company, the World Wide Web has offered a lifeline for businesses of all shapes, sizes and niches as they look to take and fulfil orders in a different way.

Despite being confined to their homes, British consumers haven’t stopped shopping, and many companies have struggled to keep up with demand.

The digital growth many companies have experienced during lockdown isn’t likely to stop as life returns to normal.

According to a recent report, the pandemic has accelerated e-commerce growth by 4 to 6 years, with online spending surging to a record high in recent months.

This may mean that businesses (whether they remained open during lockdown or not) have to change their tack, and expand and invest in their digital offering more in the coming months.

Increased demand

The challenges faced during lockdown highlighted just how much we rely on suppliers overseas. As the country became cut off from the rest of the world, many industries experienced shortages.

With this in mind, an increasing number of individuals have turned their attention inwards and opted to buy British made products and services as a result. Hopefully, this renewed enthusiasm for homemade goods and services continues.

New ways of working

Remote working has been critical to the continuity of many businesses. Working from home has now become the norm for many employees not just across the UK but around the world.

With the latest video conferencing technology, the business has been able to carry on, and with this success, more and more companies are looking to embrace this new way of working for the long term.

Tech giants Facebook, Twitter, Google, Apple and Microsoft are just some of the brands who are now extending their work from home policies.

Twitter has even announced that the majority of their employees will work remotely on a permanent basis. Amazon is also devising plans to adapt their work culture during these changing times, so is remote working here to stay?

Business Matters explains why it’s not just technology that has a vital part to play if remote working is to become the future:

“Technology aside, the key to enabling permanent remote working is good personal wellbeing. 

Businesses will need to give staff the means to work effectively from home – from offering the right desks, chairs and potentially clever workstations that can be installed in homes to make working from home comfortable and unobtrusive. 

And we will need to offer some form of personal face-to-face time to ensure good mental health for remote workforces.”

The Covid-19 pandemic has no doubt wreaked havoc across many industries and as we slowly emerge from lockdown getting our businesses back on track is of the utmost importance.

Embracing the business benefits mentioned above will help you to change the shape of how you do business, and ensure your survival and success for the long and short term.