Our government has said that this is the biggest economic challenge we've experienced in peace-time and throughout this lockdown many businesses are experiencing the pressure of trying to retain staff whilst staying afloat.
It is no secret that hospitality has been one of the hardest hit industries and based on what we've seen already, this challenge is likely to feel more like a marathon than a sprint.
If there is positive news to be found in the current crisis, it is that we have seen some countries begin to move beyond their crisis response phase, into recovery and the early stages of an economic rebound. Businesses are starting to re-open and economic booms have been forecast over the coming months and years.
Until that time comes in the U.K. we have compiled our top tips for you during this challenging period, hopefully these can also help you to plan and prepare ahead of your re-opening in the coming months.
Here Are Our Top 5 Tips:
1. Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Possibly the biggest aid offered to hospitality businesses and their workers is the grant to cover 80% of staff members salaries, backdated to March 1 2020. The grant means placing staff on furlough with 80% of the salary to be paid by the government, up to £2500 per month, or £45,000 per year approx. We have uploaded the details of this Government scheme here along with the relevant government links to see if your business is eligible.
2. Redeploying Your Staff
Your staff are your greatest asset when running a successful business but many may be concerned about their job security in these uncertain times.
Some hospitality businesses have restructured to operate as a takeaway or offer a delivery service as a means to keep trading, the additional benefit of this to the business is the redeployment of its staff. The business can continue providing work for its existing waiting staff as delivery drivers or working on the phones and ordering platforms to serve customers.
3. Speak to Your Creditors
Your landlord has bills to pay too, and during this time negotiating a reduced rate or a payment holiday may be more appealing than a potentially empty premises. Be willing to negotiate and perhaps you can come together on an agreement that’s beneficial for both parties over the coming months.
4. Check With HMRC
VAT and Income Tax have been delayed until June and there is
also £4,000 available for small businesses in the form of relief on National Insurance contributions. You will qualify for this as long as your NI contributions are less than £100,000. You can ask your payroll / accountant to check this, as it was increased from £3,000 in the initial annual Budget.
5. Bank Fees and Loan Repayments
If you find yourself paying a high amount in bank fees or you have loan repayments to make, switching your bank may help slash your fees and also provide you with further incentives to switch at this time.
Companies providing you with loans may also be able to provide you with a
payment holiday to help weather the storm over the next few months - many have publicly pledged not to enforce late payment fees and have launched funds to support small businesses.
In these unprecedented times being adaptable is key, hopefully you have found these tips helpful, you can view more tips for employers and links in our Hospitality Hub, which you can visit by clicking here.
Do you have any helpful tips for other independent hospitality businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic?
We would love to hear from you! Reach out to us by email at email@example.com