31 Aug 2020

Survey shows small businesses better prepared for alert level changes

4:19 pm on 31 August 2020

Small businesses were much better prepared for the switch to alert levels 3 and 2 this time around, but more needs to be done to support staff working from home, according to a new survey.

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File image. Photo: 123RF

The telecommunications company 2degrees survey of 1000 small to medium businesses found that more than half of firms introduced new ways of working after the April lockdown.

It also showed that two-thirds of small businesses were now comfortable with their employees working from home, higher than pre-Covid-19 levels.

2degrees chief business officer Andrew Fairgray said the second lockdown was tougher for staff than the first, and businesses needed to improve how they checked in on their well-being.

"The view and the energy around how do you keep motivated is something that I think we'd all have to consider as we move in and out of these phases, which I think we will."

Fairgray said more could be done to provide the appropriate support so staff could share how they were feeling more easily.

The survey also found that 71 percent of businesses that were no more than five years old adjusted their ways of working, compared with just 46 percent of those businesses that had been around for six years or longer.

Fairgray said younger businesses tended to be digitally savvy and as a result were more mobile and adaptable.

"Some of the more older or traditional businesses have been successful based on the structures and disciplines that they have had in place. So when you change those structures and disciplines it's a little a more difficult to think about what is it that you need for that to be successful in a new world."

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