9th April 2020
Luxembourg MSI member, Initium Corporate Services SA shares its thoughts on the initial steps needed to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting impact on business operations.
As we celebrated the start of 2020, few of us could have anticipated that the epidemic in China would turn into a worldwide pandemic. The resulting chaos, suffering and difficulties we face today are a challenge for us all. But face them we shall, and below are some of the measures that Initium Group has already adopted or is in the process of implementing to meet these challenges.
In addition to the serious business issues that almost all of us are facing, the needs of our employees are of paramount importance. We must recognise that our employees are dealing with anxiety and stress, both at work and at home, and ensure that they are supported at this difficult time. Likewise, our clients are facing their own challenges and need our support and advice. Regular contact with employees and clients is essential.
Last year, Initium Group initiated the use of cloud computing to increase the protection of our data server. We also put in place a remote access system with double authentication for additional security. This has made it much easier for us to embrace remote working in the early stages of lockdown. For those businesses yet to embrace cloud computing, the current crisis is the opportunity to consider making that move and enjoy the advantages of remote access to your business data.
Emails are good, telephone calls are better, but nothing can beat face to face communication. Sadly, the opportunities for physical face to face meetings are all but curtailed. Fortunately, we now have the ability to meet and collaborate in a ‘virtual’ way via online video conferencing, using such tools as Zoom, Teams, WhatsApp etc. Such virtual meetings are an excellent way to stay in touch. Make sure you set up a regular ‘face to face’ meeting with staff/members of your team.
With the current enforced travel restrictions, online meetings and video conferences with clients are essential. At Initium Group, we use a range of video conferences and regular calls to stay in touch with our clients. The meetings and calls create a positive link with clients, and may even offer opportunities for enhanced collaboration and deeper business connections. They also have the added benefit of being less time-consuming as no travel time is required!
This applies to both management and employees. We all have goals to achieve, and working remotely can impact on our ability to achieve these goals. There are a range of issues we may face, from looking after children at the same time as working; struggling to find the privacy required for home working; dealing with worries about friends and family; having limited opportunity for exercise and fresh air. All of these can impact on work performance. At Initium Group, we have adopted a flexible approach. Where possible, we adapt working hour patterns to accommodate the employee’s individual needs. We want, and need, our teams to be working at their best, so we try to be empathetic to individual circumstances and offer flexible solutions.
All in all, the current crisis poses daily challenges, but ones that we are handling together, within a team of willing people. The world at the end of this crisis will not be the same, for sure. We believe that business will be put in a different perspective and that flexibility will be ever more present in our attitude.
Initium Group is a 12 person company based in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and has been established since 2010. Initium group provides a full range of tax, accounting and corporate services to high-end corporate and private clients. The well-established team of experts also offers an in-depth experience into the field of wealth planning.
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