As businesses in Nigeria and across the globe grapple with disruptions and setbacks caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has offered survival tips to Project 100 companies and other oil and gas service companies in Nigeria how to navigate through these precarious times and remain resilient.

The document which was prepared by the Project Management Office (PMO), titled “Maintaining Business Resilience Amidst COVID-19,” was circulated to Project 100 beneficiaries as part of institutional support from the NCDMB to ensure business continuity and resilience by these start-ups.

The Board advisory identified supply chain and operations disruptions as one of the major challenges experienced by companies in times like this. It enjoins Project 100 companies and other local businesses to identify where their key suppliers and contractors are located and develop contingency plans to ensure the sustainability of supply.

The local businesses were also advised to engage their logistics provider and develop mitigation and contingency plans in view of the restrictions and lockdown in many parts of the country.

It also enjoins the start-ups and local supply chain to constantly review their active contracts to understand potential vulnerabilities and how best to mitigate their risks, especially the impact of force majeure.

On inventory, the Board encouraged organizations to assess their cover and consider ring-fencing for particular customers in the case of shortages.

The advisory also identified the need for Project 100 companies and local businesses to develop a communication plan and engage with key customers, employees and suppliers and ensure that their staff can work remotely and safely while trying to maintain key operations.

Other key nuggets included the need to pay attention to technology, Service Level Agreements (SLA) and to brace to take the shock of contract renegotiation with clients.

To ensure financial stability, NCDMB advised the startup companies and local businesses to revise their cash flow, working capital management and inventory forecasts alongside supply and demand forecasts. It also predicted that national governments across the globe might adopt trade protectionism, hence oil and gas companies need to get mitigation plans for supply by developing domestic alternatives.

Oil companies were urged to review public health requirements and to assure customers that their products and services are still safe, while keeping an eye on the drop in demand and cost and profitability.

The quick win measures listed for Project100 companies to include urgent maintaining business agility, emergency preparedness, good risk assessment, motivated workforce, technology savvy and prudent financial management.

The advisory was prepared by the Project Management Office (PMO) of the Project 100 Initiative, a capacity development programme of the NCDMB in partnership with KPMG.

The issuance of this advisory is demonstrative of resolve of NCDMB leadership to stand by Project 100 companies through thick and thin, the Board said.

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