How to incorporate external funding into your business continuity plan
Over the past few weeks and months, many businesses will have learnt the value of their business continuity plans.
While plans that were put in place to allow for contingencies such as natural disasters will be helping businesses, even the best made plans will now be struggling to completely protect them in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
A business continuity plan must remain fluid to support a business’s needs, and it’s worth considering how current measures that have been put in place to offer funding and support should tie in with your business’s plan going forward.
What is a business continuity plan?
A business continuity plan is a roadmap that shows the actions your business would take to safeguard itself and allow it to continue operating in the event of a disaster.
Some things a typical BCP may include are an analysis of potential threats, an overview of who in the business is responsible for certain areas and emergency contact information. It may state an alternative operation site or actions needed to allow employees to work from home, and other actions that need to be taken to protect the business’s assets, including data, and allow operations to continue.
As well as providing direction for the business in the event it needs to be actioned, some customers will also want to see evidence of your continuity plan to give them peace of mind that your services will be unimpacted.
How does external funding fit in?
Cash flow is susceptible to being affected by most major events within a company, and when your cash flow suffers, the repercussions are often felt by all areas of the business.
As well as ensuring that your business is able to run and repairing any damage caused by the disaster, trying to keep your cash flow stable should be a key part of your business continuity plan.
There are many different funding solutions that can help your business. As well as providing a short term cash injection, many can also help improve your cash flow in the long term.
A business loan can provide your business with a quick injection of cash, and the new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme has been launched to increase accessibility as much as possible.
They are a flexible and fast way to secure funds that can be used for a wide range of business needs, meaning they can be suitable for a wide range of businesses and sectors. It’s possible to get fixed interest rates, meaning you’ll know the exact amount of your repayments in advance, which can make it easier to manage your cash flow going forward.
Invoice finance allows you to release funding against your invoices. You can release up to 90% of the invoice value withing 24 hours of its issue, meaning that capital is available to pay your own suppliers, take on more work, and cover business running costs.
There are a range of options available when choosing an invoice finance facility, helping companies to find a solution that will work for your business now – and provide value in the long run.
If you have money tied up in assets such as plant and machinery, asset refinance offers a way to release that capital without losing the ability to use the assets.
A finance company will purchase the assets from you and then lease them back to you for a pre-determined time period. This can be a great way to unlock capital that you need to get you through a more difficult period, but it also carries other long term benefits.
You’ll be protected from asset depreciation and set lease payments will allow you to plan your cash flow accurately in the future.
Sale and leaseback
Sale and leaseback works in a similar way to asset refinance, but focuses on commercial property. A provider will purchase the property and then lease it back to you.
This allows you to continue working from a space that you know works for you and is set up to accommodate your daily needs, while still releasing a substantial sum of money that can be used where you need it.
Find out more
If you want to better understand which funding solutions you should be including in your business continuity plan or need to access funding now to support you through the COVID-19 pandemic, we can help.
As a commercial finance broker, we are able to introduce you to a wide range of commercial funding providers, and our extensive experience in the industry means we are best placed to identify the most suitable solution for your business.
Call us on 0800 9774833 or request a call back from one of our funding experts to discuss your business’s requirements.