The coronavirus (COVID-19) and the measures taken to avoid the virus spreading will affect a variety of businesses in South Africa. The funeral Industry needs to be prepared to ensure business continuity, avoid major business disruption or financial losses.
The industry faces risk where policyholders may fail to make premium payment as they are unable to reach the pension points, make use of public transport or be quarantined. You may experience inventory shortages due to suppliers being unable to deliver on time, either due to illness of their employees or higher demand in products.
Your business needs to review its own business continuity plans to ensure minor disruptions in the unlikely event of a disaster or national shutdown.
Start by educating your employees the dangers surrounding the pandemic. Ensure that personal hygiene is a top priority amongst employees and yourself. Allow sick employees to stay at home and regularly clean keyboards, computer mice and door handles with disinfectant. You are allowed to deny sick employees access to the workplace to protect other employees from getting sick.
If your business is badly affected and you do not have enough work for your employees, consult with a labour consultant to shorten the working hours for your employees and to reduce their pay accordingly. If this is not an option (where the business faces bigger financial losses or bankruptcy) you may need to consider retrenchment.
See second article about Business Continuity on policy premium collection form policyholders and EUM’s unique solutions offered.