Business & Finance Workforce & Business Changes, Layoffs, BCPs

Caesar

Ex-Huckleberry
Mar 3, 2005
24,087
9,144
Tombstone, AZ
AFL Club
Western Bulldogs
We've received the green light to move our team's operations to WFH as of Monday. Will be challenging because we're heading into our busiest few months and I don't really think the IT infrastructure is in place to allow this to happen 100% smoothly. However, we've still got jobs for the foreseeable future and in that respect we consider ourselves some of the luckier ones.

I'd be interested in hearing about other people's work experiences due to the outbreak and the expected coming recession. i.e. do you still have a job, if so how has it changed and what is the outlook, if not what are your plans and how are you coping, that sort of thing.

If you own a business, what are you doing to manage the changes and how are you planning for the future?
 

Golden_6

Premiership Player
Aug 15, 2014
4,229
7,195
AFL Club
Western Bulldogs
Other Teams
Chicago Bulls
I'm a public accountant and nothing much will change for me. I do have the option of working from home if needed, albeit less productively. I feel my job is secure.

Being in this industry I can tell you it's not good from a client perspective. Already received dozens of phone calls from panicked business owners, and it's likely a lot of these will go under. We have a large pub clientele and they are already feeling the pinch with a lot closing kitchens temporarily due to restrictions on the amount of people indoors.
 

Herne Hill Hammer

Premium Platinum
Jun 22, 2008
19,943
15,043
Cowes
AFL Club
Geelong
I work a 2 / 1 roster, fifo from Victoria to WA. I am currently on break. I fly out for WA again next Tuesday and start work Wednesday.

I'm checking my work email regularly to see what's going on. Job wise I'm probably ok but if they were to shut down domestic air travel or WA were to close their borders then there'd be problems. I have about 6 months worth of annual leave and long service leave which I can take at half pay if I want to. While that's good, if they said we need you here or else we're going to have to let you go then I'd probably drive to WA and work something out while I'm there. Suffice to say that in that scenario, I wouldn't be seeing my girls for quite a long time.

There's a heap of people that I work with who live overseas, predominantly New Zealand and South East Asian countries, some are married to locals in their countries of residence. If they're already in country at work then they have decisions to make. If they have no family in WA then it could be an expensive exercise. They're between a rock and a hard place now with the ban on international flights and the entry of foreign nationals into the country.

If my wife were to lose her job we'd still be ok. If I lost mine, we'd be ok but the girls would have to move schools and other discretionary spending would have to be looked at.

I looked at the latest email this morning from my boss. We were already in work panels, A, B and C. they have now been divided again, we have staggered start times, we have designated work stations, toilet cubicles, dining tables and transport to and from site and all meetings are to either be conducted using Webex or in rooms that are only to run at half capacity.
 

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Gralin

Super Moderator
Apr 8, 2010
34,779
51,219
Melbourne
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Buffalo Bills
We already were setup to WFH and the company I work at preferred you to work from home or at the customer rather than in the office

Now most customers prefer us to WFH as well
 

burge13

Club Legend
Jan 25, 2019
1,675
2,051
AFL Club
Adelaide
I'd guess 50% of cafes around the CBD are shut already here. I walk a good few blocks each morning and some boarded up already

Maybe coincidence the lease ended but it's surreal seeing so many empty

CBD shops/office space/cafes etc may never recover. Once businesses realise productivity isn't that bad when most WFH why will they rent office space? Waste of money. This could cause a massive change in how we work if it carries on a while and habits set in I can't see it coming back
 

Chief

Chugging Adrenochrome
Dec 1, 1999
84,147
56,060
Brisbane
AFL Club
Carlton
We've received the green light to move our team's operations to WFH as of Monday. Will be challenging because we're heading into our busiest few months and I don't really think the IT infrastructure is in place to allow this to happen 100% smoothly. However, we've still got jobs for the foreseeable future and in that respect we consider ourselves some of the luckier ones.

I'd be interested in hearing about other people's work experiences due to the outbreak and the expected coming recession. i.e. do you still have a job, if so how has it changed and what is the outlook, if not what are your plans and how are you coping, that sort of thing.

If you own a business, what are you doing to manage the changes and how are you planning for the future?
There are tons of places in the same boat, but people like Cisco are giving free VPN licensing extensions etc I hear.
 

tants

Norm Smith Medallist
Jul 30, 2009
6,252
7,651
AFL Club
Fremantle
I've asked my staff to WFH as a trial until Wednesday. If that continues, we'll be business as usual. Revenue taken a small hit.

Most clients are very understanding.
 

edgie

Hall of Famer
Apr 27, 2008
44,443
49,045
The 'Yabba
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
Other Teams
Chael Sonnen: Moral Champion
Talking to an old teacher of mine from school, an arrogant, confident man, who's rarely seen not wearing his sleazy leather jacket and black pants regardless of the weather or event. Anyway he's made pretty well for himself outside of being a teacher in the hospitality industry on the side, owning multiple restaraunts and motels. He was in tears as he's had had 110 rooms cancel overnight and three months worth of tourism programs on top of it. He owns the a place near the Adelaide airport and they're going to have to put off 100 people. One of my best mates recently got a job in one of his places as chef, I hope he's ok.
 

craigos

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 2, 2014
10,166
19,041
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Liverpool
We've received the green light to move our team's operations to WFH as of Monday. Will be challenging because we're heading into our busiest few months and I don't really think the IT infrastructure is in place to allow this to happen 100% smoothly. However, we've still got jobs for the foreseeable future and in that respect we consider ourselves some of the luckier ones.

I'd be interested in hearing about other people's work experiences due to the outbreak and the expected coming recession. i.e. do you still have a job, if so how has it changed and what is the outlook, if not what are your plans and how are you coping, that sort of thing.

If you own a business, what are you doing to manage the changes and how are you planning for the future?
Are you in healthcare or groceries cause what industry outside of those is busy?
 

Larry Barnsworth

Tiny Scotch Vovo
Mar 11, 2018
2,978
3,829
AFL Club
Hawthorn
I've been BCPing like a MFer this week. Switched to FT WFH yesterday.

I'll be OK, as like Caesar, there is work to be done and they want me to do it.

It's interesting to see what parts of tech are holding up well and what are struggling. Especially communication tools. Although we may see change as people abandon tech that's not coping and move to "the good ones".

VPNs under a lot of pressure. Most companies haven't built their capability with 100% usage in mind. Scrambling now. And that's before we consider the change of traffic distribution and NBN effects. I wonder how CheckPoint's share price is?
 

BACCS

BigFooty Juggernaut
May 10, 2009
42,639
20,762
Adelaide Oval
AFL Club
Adelaide
Other Teams
Gary Putland, Redbacks, Oz Cricket
I work in consulting so working from home is fine, but obviously is a lot easier when in the office. It is likely staff who catch PT will start working from home over the next week and those who drive can still come into the office. It’s a pretty spaced out office anyway. It could definitely impact how much new work we get for a while though.

I’ve also still got a site trip next week, but only because the client has deemed it critical. Any non critical trips are getting delayed.
 

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the_interloper

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 1, 2006
15,606
14,529
Melbourne
AFL Club
Richmond
I'd guess 50% of cafes around the CBD are shut already here. I walk a good few blocks each morning and some boarded up already

Maybe coincidence the lease ended but it's surreal seeing so many empty

CBD shops/office space/cafes etc may never recover. Once businesses realise productivity isn't that bad when most WFH why will they rent office space? Waste of money. This could cause a massive change in how we work if it carries on a while and habits set in I can't see it coming back
I wonder about that too, we're gonna drop in revenue but our expenses will be lower with no travel allowed, I wonder if we'll manage everything remotely from here?
 

burge13

Club Legend
Jan 25, 2019
1,675
2,051
AFL Club
Adelaide
I wonder about that too, we're gonna drop in revenue but our expenses will be lower with no travel allowed, I wonder if we'll manage everything remotely from here?
I wonder what some medium-sized businesses are thinking renting expensive office space sometimes. Why pay a shed load a month for everyone to sit next to each other when we are all a phone call, email, text, skype, facetime, DM etc away. You can screen share through Lync, endless technology for us to communicate. The only downside is lacking social face to face interaction. We'd probably all go nuts in a lounge every day and night but there has to be some change moving forward. Renting an office is quickly becoming redundant

There's no shortage of available offices in the CBD here anyway, maybe the change is happening already
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
55,211
58,766
AFL Club
West Coast
I wonder what some medium-sized businesses are thinking renting expensive office space sometimes. Why pay a shed load a month for everyone to sit next to each other when we are all a phone call, email, text, skype, facetime, DM etc away. You can screen share through Lync, endless technology for us to communicate. The only downside is lacking social face to face interaction. We'd probably all go nuts in a lounge every day and night but there has to be some change moving forward. Renting an office is quickly becoming redundant

There's no shortage of available offices in the CBD here anyway, maybe the change is happening already
A LOT of businesses in Australia carry ridiculous overheads. I remember working in a small (only half a dozen floors), shitty office space that had a single cafe and the rent of the cafe increased $1500 a month. That's a lot of coffees. In that situation their hand is forced to some degree as you can't do that from home. So if you wanted lower costs you'd need to look at a different premises.

For a lot of small businesses a home office makes sense. If you are paying tens of thousands per year for space you need to pass on those costs to clients and you are stuck with them when business drops off. Places like marketing and advertising consultancies love to have cool modern offices with high rents but without a couple of high value accounts they immediately lose money hand over fist.
 

tants

Norm Smith Medallist
Jul 30, 2009
6,252
7,651
AFL Club
Fremantle
A LOT of businesses in Australia carry ridiculous overheads. I remember working in a small (only half a dozen floors), shitty office space that had a single cafe and the rent of the cafe increased $1500 a month. That's a lot of coffees. In that situation their hand is forced to some degree as you can't do that from home. So if you wanted lower costs you'd need to look at a different premises.

For a lot of small businesses a home office makes sense. If you are paying tens of thousands per year for space you need to pass on those costs to clients and you are stuck with them when business drops off. Places like marketing and advertising consultancies love to have cool modern offices with high rents but without a couple of high value accounts they immediately lose money hand over fist.
My office was next to a swimwear designer. They had a shop as well, where they spent most of the week. It would have been $20K per annum to maintain an office for ~10 hours per week. They moved out ~ 6months ago after 3 years. That's a lot of profit lost.
 

craigos

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 2, 2014
10,166
19,041
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Liverpool
Associated with Retail and it's not going to be good. This is just the beginning and you have billion dollar companies really struggling after a week or two. If this goes lock down it's going to be unlike anything people have seen. Government will do everything to prevent an enforced quarantine.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
55,211
58,766
AFL Club
West Coast
My office was next to a swimwear designer. They had a shop as well, where they spent most of the week. It would have been $20K per annum to maintain an office for ~10 hours per week. They moved out ~ 6months ago after 3 years. That's a lot of profit lost.
There are so many retail shops where you wonder how they stay open. A few pairs of jeans, a couple of displays of tops/dresses and that's it. Even selling $200 items you got made in Vietnam for nothing won't make you a huge profit when you are paying someone to be there 6/7 days a week on top of thousands for the floor space.

I have a mate who works in health and drives around to see clients that had a home office. He eventually opened a small office so he could see some clients there if it suited them better after weighing up the costs. I think a lot of people get into the mindset of thinking they can just pass on whatever costs they incur to clients.
 

Mofra

Moderator
Dec 6, 2005
46,822
122,949
Footscray
AFL Club
Western Bulldogs
Other Teams
Footscray, The Exers
Talking to an old teacher of mine from school, an arrogant, confident man, who's rarely seen not wearing his sleazy leather jacket and black pants regardless of the weather or event. Anyway he's made pretty well for himself outside of being a teacher in the hospitality industry on the side, owning multiple restaraunts and motels. He was in tears as he's had had 110 rooms cancel overnight and three months worth of tourism programs on top of it. He owns the a place near the Adelaide airport and they're going to have to put off 100 people. One of my best mates recently got a job in one of his places as chef, I hope he's ok.
That's tough. Friend of my mum just shut his doors after 20+ years of business too. It's sending a lot of people to the wall.

Even worse - in Victoria liquor licence fees are due 31 March. Plenty of places facing massive charges (five figures) heading into a time where they earnings are down ~80% across the board.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
55,211
58,766
AFL Club
West Coast
Associated with Retail and it's not going to be good. This is just the beginning and you have billion dollar companies really struggling after a week or two. If this goes lock down it's going to be unlike anything people have seen. Government will do everything to prevent an enforced quarantine.
I went to Myer yesterday and it was a ghost town. Girl at the desk said it's been like that since the weekend and is only getting worse. Ordinarily I would love not being surrounded by noisy, germ carrying, annoying Joe Public but it just felt sad. And that's a multi level, established store in the CBD. :|
 

burge13

Club Legend
Jan 25, 2019
1,675
2,051
AFL Club
Adelaide
There are so many retail shops where you wonder how they stay open. A few pairs of jeans, a couple of displays of tops/dresses and that's it. Even selling $200 items you got made in Vietnam for nothing won't make you a huge profit when you are paying someone to be there 6/7 days a week on top of thousands for the floor space.

I have a mate who works in health and drives around to see clients that had a home office. He eventually opened a small office so he could see some clients there if it suited them better after weighing up the costs. I think a lot of people get into the mindset of thinking they can just pass on whatever costs they incur to clients.
The opposite will see success moving forward. Lowering costs to clients by not having an office...

I went and saw a physio the other week, $80. They have a flash office and everything, recently renovated. He could probably work as a mobile physio taking the table to clients homes/workplaces, charge $50 per appointment + $10 'call-out' and put a lot more money in his pocket.

This is just one example, there would be 100's similarly positioned across various sectors.
 

Scotland

TheBrownDog
May 5, 2006
55,211
58,766
AFL Club
West Coast
Yep, we need to decouple from expensive overheads.

Coles, Harvey Norman etc. have massive stores but they also act as mini wholesalers and buy/sell high volumes.
 

edgie

Hall of Famer
Apr 27, 2008
44,443
49,045
The 'Yabba
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
Other Teams
Chael Sonnen: Moral Champion
It won't be a bad thing if the commercial rental industry collapses, so much of it is extortion. If business weren't handcuffed by so many expenses they'd be able to compete better with online.

Sent from my Nokia 7.2 using Tapatalk
 

craigos

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 2, 2014
10,166
19,041
AFL Club
Hawthorn
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Liverpool
I went to Myer yesterday and it was a ghost town. Girl at the desk said it's been like that since the weekend and is only getting worse. Ordinarily I would love not being surrounded by noisy, germ carrying, annoying Joe Public but it just felt sad. And that's a multi level, established store in the CBD. :|
There's no question that Myer will go into administration before this is done. Another big one who I wouldn't be surprised to see hit trouble would be Harvey Norman.
 

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