Our COVID 19 pledge against layoffs
As a team, we came together and looked at how day-to-day needs have changed in order to reduce spending as a whole. We determined what spending could be spared or intelligently deferred. We also had volunteers willing to take on 4 day work weeks or unpaid time off to be with family. We were able to make up the difference with a company-wide 8 days of furlough to be taken strategically based on cross-functional blockers.
Outside of our team, we prioritized relationships with vendors and clients to proportionally drive down expenses together. Through creativity, strategic planning, and transparency we are continuously working together to rebuild and relaunch in extraordinary ways only made possible because of these relationships.
Once complete we quickly got Board approval for our 6-month financial plan that pledged job security for all team members. We know we are very fortunate to have backers who believe wholeheartedly in the vision and care deeply for the team.
Embracing COVID 19 government funding
There are a number of relief options being made available to small businesses. Here we’ll share the assistance we’re considering.
The Paycheck Protection Program became available on April 3, 2020, and will be available through June 30, 2020. This program is designed to help keep your employees on the payroll. Remember that as long as the funds are used for payroll and to pay rent/utilities, the loan will be forgiven. Eligibility is simple. Have less than 500 employees and you qualify.
Our business is dependent on people gathering in large groups at venues and events so our revenue has surely taken a hit. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan is an advance of up to $10,000 for businesses like us experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. Eligibility for this is the same.
In addition to the small business options, our government is offering Economic Impact Payments to individuals. Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive an economic impact payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples and up to $500 for each qualifying child. The distribution of these payments will begin in the next few weeks and the extra funds are meant to help our employees cope with the unexpected expenses caused by this crisis.
Pivoting from COVID 19
While longer sales cycle prospects are still in play, our shorter-term sales nearly came to a halt. Knowing how important it is to keep our momentum, our Client Support, Sales, and Ops teams have jumped into part-time Product (R&D, testing) & Content (social & marketing) roles. Once again we came together and talked openly to see where our strengths could be used creatively and made a plan to pivot.
Sharing our pandemic insights
To our friends within the hospitality industry, it may seem dark now, but our greatest times are upon us. When people once again flock to their favorite bars, restaurants, concert halls, and museums we need to be ready. Chexology wants to help, and here’s how we plan to use our data for good.
Did you know Chexology works with over 100 venues and brands across 3 continents and connects to a wide range of fields across the hospitality industry? With our product, clients gain new insights into their venues and operations. As a company, we’re able to look at that data as a whole and map trends we’re seeing throughout.
To help you prepare for reopenings following the pandemic we thought we’d share some interesting historical stats like peak days/hours and average lengths of customer stays across venue types. We’ll also be charting how quickly our industry adapted to stay-at-home measures by showing the rate of closures/drop in usage and when we see usage pick back up/how quickly customer counts rise. With our COVID 19 data, we’ll be able to draw correlations between government mandates, public adaptation to those mandates, and venue traffic patterns. This is new for us so we’re excited to see where this goes and how it may help bring back business during the pandemic.
Returning to Normalcy
We’d also like to share additional steps we are taking to help clients weather the COVID 19 storm. Coupled with the changes listed above, we’ve built out a pricing model that will allow for client financial recovery and we’re currently undergoing a product refactor to allow for a safe, contactless relaunch.
Firstly, we’re focusing on universalizing our use case. New features will allow our product to be used not just for coat checks but for any item. We’ve also removed the “counter” barrier by allowing our application to be used on any mobile device without being tethered to a counter opening the door for more mobile services like luggage check and valet. This allows your team to use a contactless experience with customers to help keep everyone safe.
By introducing contactless exchanges, we’ll enable our client’s customers to check their items in and out directly from their phones, using Apple Wallet pass technology. No exchange of paper and no mobile device screen contact other than your own is required. Achieving these steps came help prevent the spread of COVID 19.
We are working hard to provide all of this at affordable prices for our eventual return to normalcy.