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GLASIAOUS Consortium held the meeting to share the insights in COVID-19
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2020/06/05
GLASIAOUS Consortium held the meeting to share the insights in COVID-19

GLASIAOUS Consortium held the meeting to share the insights in COVID-19.

 

On May 18th, 2020, GLASIAOUS Consortium members (and some non-member companies) joined the meeting to share their insights in COVID-19.

The 27 participants of 14 companies, from the different industries (including accounting firm, IT and insurance) and different countries (including Japan, Vietnam, India, and Singapore), shared their business situation, counter-measures such as teleworking and prospect for 2 hours.

*GLASIAOUS Consortium Membership : https://www.glasiaous.com/en/member-list/ 

 

We would like to share the key points here with you as follows;

 

 1.How Affected by COVID-19

  • Overseas expansion and M&A on the decline regardless of the country

On one hand, it is hardly expected that businesses start new overseas expansion projects any soon even after the emergency declarations are terminated. Recovery from the damage that has been caused would be the task with the highest priority, which would take several months at earliest or few years at some companies.

On the other hand, some participants mentioned that they get more contacts from the companies considering new overseas expansion. They guess the companies which used to do only domestic business might be trying to diversify their business by starting overseas business.

  • Withdrawal yet to come to the surface

None of the members and their clients has decided to withdraw from the overseas business yet. However, some members pointed out that the growing number of their clients give it a consideration.

 

Expansion from Japan? (Outbounds)
  • The management of overseas subsidiaries should be less led by the Japanese from head office and more by the locals through gradual delegation of authority, as it is estimated that the expats who temporarily came back to Japan cannot go to the host country no earlier than the end of June ~ August (depending on the host country’s policy).
  • The management led less by the expats from head office increases the importance of internal control.
  • Therefore, they have to realize both “engagement of local staff in management” and “construction of internal control” at the same time.

 

Expansion into Japan? (Inbounds)
  • The new expansion has almost completely stopped in response to suspension of overseas travel and postponement of Tokyo Olympic 2020.
  • However, the requests for the opportunity to learn how to start business in Japan are rapidly increasing, which implies that there might be a rush of expansion into Japan when the situation concerning COVID-19 is settled.
  • Therefore, it is desirable to be prepared to catch the needs of companies coming to Japan.

 

2.Teleworking & The Issues

The majority of accounting firms and business firms adopt teleworking step by step. The 3 major issues have been experienced as follows;

  1. Security
    • While VPN is a major way to ensure the security, it sometimes interrupts the connection.
    • In particular, accounting operation tends to be paper-dependent, which forces accounting members to go to office.
  2. Approval workflow yet to be digitalized
    • According to the questionnaire taken before the meeting, approval workflow (e.g. paper signature) was the most major issue that disturbs adoption of teleworking.

  3. Infrastructure
    • While teleworking is growing popular in the capital area, the infrastructure for teleworking is sometimes insufficient in the less populated areas.

3.Future Prospect

The negative impacts tend to catch our attention. However, the business owners, especially young leaders, find some opportunities in this situation.

“What we used to see is now invisible, and what we used not to see has come to the surface.”

While we feel as if it became hard to grasp how the business is going, teleworking made visible unnecessary or unurgent tasks and individual attitude to work.

◆“We had better pay attention to what became available instead of what we lost.”

A member of the consulting firm which backs up Japanese companies expanding overseas mentioned that rapid digitalization encourages him to add comprehensiveness to their service. 

◆“It could be an opportunity to create the brand-new business operation.”

Specifically,

  1. Cloud accounting system
    It allows the operator and the reviewer to access the same data anytime where the internet is available
  2. To go paperless
    The solution includes digital signature, e-invoice and e-commerce. Some companies in Japan have already adopted digital signature system. However, as the accounting firms in Vietnam pointed out, digitalization may not be welcomed where the local business culture prefers signature on hard copy.
  3. Management & employment for teleworking
    At the accounting firm specializing in the service to companies expanding into Japan, the manager makes sure to talk with each operators every day to grasp how they are doing their job. The firm also considers recruitment on the premise of teleworking.

 

It was the unanimous opinion that the movement for new workstyle would remain active even after this situation is settled, which indicates the necessity of continuous consideration and practice.


The discussion was highly insightful to us, Business Engineering Corporation, as one business firm.

We sincerely hope the article encourages you to overcome the hardship.

 

(This article was written by Haruyama, Matsumoto and Katano at Business Engineering Corp, and translated by Onishi at Business Engineering Corp.)

 

Enjoy free-of-charge subscription for 3 months by applying now!

In order to encourage teleworking, we offer the cloud accounting service GLASIAOUS is for free for 3 months.

*This promotion ends on Septemper 30th, 2020.

For more details about this promotion, refer to this page.

 

 

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