There is some good news in the midst of the chaos. SMB entrepreneurs are known for their innovative strategies and, facing a community in need, some companies are redefining their value proposition for the short term.
Several industries are also seeing growth in previously under-utilized services. One such example is the increased adoption of virtual visits and telemedicine practices in the medical and veterinary industries, allowing providers to continue to provide quality care to human and pet patients while lowering the risk of community spread. No longer limited to large practices, many small-town providers and solo practitioners are now providing virtual services. Some physical therapy companies have started using YouTube to offer support via videos to help patients continue their recovery.
And it’s not just about community and customers, companies are also getting creative to support their employees during this pandemic. Whether that’s policy and technology updates to enable employees to work remotely from the security of their own homes, temporary changes to benefits programs to provide extra protection to workers or bonus pay for essential on-site business functions, employers are adapting to the needs of their workforce.
Unfortunately, not all people are staying employed during this uncharted environment. However, the U.S. Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service, and the U.S. Department of Labor recently announced that SMB employers will have two new refundable payroll tax credits, designed to fully reimburse them, dollar-for-dollar, for the cost of providing Coronavirus-related employee leave. This relief to employees and small and midsize businesses is provided under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, signed on March 18, 2020.
Additionally, there is new flexibility that states have in administering their unemployment insurance programs to help Americans affected by Coronavirus. From federal announcements, they are advising businesses and their employees check the latest resources often since programs are changing rapidly in this environment.
These are uncertain times. Some companies are finding a need to significantly reduce production or temporarily shutter their business due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Understanding the resources available to assist businesses in these tumultuous times could become its own full-time job. So, we wanted to highlight some of the latest federal programs:
A full list of federal programs can also be found by visiting www.usa.gov/coronavirus.
Ascentium Capital continues to support U.S. businesses, providing access to financing and other resources to help maintain operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.