How COVID-19 Is Causing Business Owners To Re-think Their Plans

How COVID-19 Is Causing Business Owners To Re-think Their Plans 

​Since the outbreak of the coronavirus hit Australia, restaurant, cafe, bar and club owners have been forced to decide how they keep their businesses alive amid the ever-changing rules and regulations.

Right across Australia, venues have been forced to close, or operate through a takeaway and delivery method where possible. Now, we live in an age where contactless delivery, X’s are marked on the floors of cafes to keep people separated during the ordering process, and some of our favourite venues have shut up shop completely.

Venues Adapt To The New Norm

The threat of coronavirus became very real here in Australia in early March, which caused business owners to adjust their method of operation, enhance their hygiene processes, and begin to cut costs where possible. But it wasn’t until some two weeks later that new regulations were introduced, forcing venues to either operate solely as takeaway outlets or close for the foreseeable future.

Closing a restaurant, bar, night club or function venue isn’t as simple as just switching off the lights and locking the doors. Most establishments are owned by sole traders, some with more than one venue, but all with families and livelihoods to support. Inventories needed to be done, staff had to be let go (where applicable) and leftover products such as ingredients and alcohol had to be moved on. Not to mention dealing with outstanding bills, rental agreements and bank loans… it certainly wasn’t a straightforward process.

Some Say Six Months, Others Say Longer

Experts have predicted that the hospitality industry will be impacted for an extended period of time. How long, they can’t say specifically. Some say six months, others say longer. Right now, venue owners and operators need to be reactive and strategic in how they are going to reopen their businesses when the time comes. Whether this means altering your employee inclusions to promote staff loyalty, making changes to your prices or something completely different, it’s important owners use this period to refocus and come back bigger and better than ever.

One thing we do know is that food and beverage delivery will become the new norm, and the vast majority of venues will need to be on board with this when it comes time to reopen to the public.

Anything that can be done to increase the bottom line is where business models are heading, and by moving away from the bricks-and-mortar mindset into a more robust business model, this will result in a sturdier foundation in case this ever happens again.

Hospitality Operators Must Adapt

This challenging time is not about being revolutionary, it’s about being adaptable and business savvy. Everything we do now will no doubt set the tone for what happens post COVID-19, so we need to ensure our decisions and ways of operating are 100 percent more effective than they’ve ever been.

Merge Marketing
Hospitality & Tourism Marketing
Merge service a range of clients including hotels, private islands, wedding venues, restaurants, catering and tourism bodies. Based on our experiences working with such a diverse portfolio of businesses, we have a strong understanding of the trends and forces shaping the hospitality and tourism industry.