skip to log on skip to main content
VoiceOver users please use the tab key when navigating expanded menus

Article | 4-minute read

How to build a financially resilient business

Business planning

Resilience is critical to short and long-term business success.

How do you build a financially resilient business?

The term “resilience” is everywhere right now. But before you dismiss it as just another COVID-19-related buzzword (hello “pivot”!), the financial resilience of a business has long been a key indicator of potential success. Which makes it something every business owner should be striving for, in good times and the more challenging ones.

What is financial resilience?

In short, financial resilience is the ability to withstand or rebound from financial shock. External events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, have tested the financial resilience of many businesses, with business owners having to rapidly adapt and respond to ongoing setbacks and restrictions. Even some previously healthy businesses have suddenly faced extreme financial pressure, and their financial resilience is now more important than ever.

So, how do you improve your business’ financial resilience?

Facing a crisis might not seem like the best time to start thinking about your financial resilience, but unfortunately unplanned events happen all the time. More often than not, business owners need to build resilience rapidly in the short-term, to help them survive in the long-term. This can be achieved by making changes to things like costs, expenses, operation and staffing.

Resilience for the long-term

While there’s no magic formula for resilience, here are some measures you can take to build resilience into your business.

  1. Have a plan, with achievable goals. Map out the next 1-2 years of expected revenue and growth, identify any future funding gaps and secure funding before you need it. Be clear about what you’ll need to make your plan work. If you don’t have one, take a look at the ANZ Business Plan template.
  2. Balance growth with stability. It’s unusual for a business to grow without some form of financing, whether it’s for recruitment, buying new equipment, expending into new markets or new premises, or marketing to a new audience. Don’t over-extend yourself in the name of growth and be prepared for slow periods.
  3. Understand and manage your cash flow. If you haven’t done a cash flow plan and forecast now is the time to do one. If you need help, use the ANZ Cash Flow Forecast template. Build in a safety net so you can adjust for higher costs or reduced revenue. This is one area of your business you may want to seek expert help with, such as an accountant, business advisor or business banker.
  4. Build up consistent and recurring revenue. Imagine the confidence that comes with knowing a certain dollar amount will come through the door every month. Building a reliable and regular income is one of the ways your business builds resilience. Invest in your loyal customers, staff, suppliers and best products/services. We’ve developed some tips on creating purchase frequency or cross selling and upselling.

Resilience isn’t limited to your financial situation

Personal resilience has also become an even more critical and valuable attribute for business owners. The ability to adapt is an essential survival skill in a volatile environment. Visualise your business’ recovery as a journey and shift your mindset from reactionary responses, to one of planning and reinventing. Don’t forget to look after yourself - your psychological health and physical wellbeing can impact your ability to run your business.

It’s worth it

Building resilience takes time, energy, focus and regular review. But it’s worth it. A financially resilient business means you’re better equipped to handle whatever the economy, competitors or environment throws at you.


Related articles

How to forecast your business’ profit and loss

2-minute read

Different events can change your idea of how much money your business will make over the next year. Likewise, your view of the business expenses you will incur during the coming 12 months may have varied. Use our profit and loss template to help forecast for the year ahead.

Keep reading


Use a balance sheet to keep a handle on your business’ finances

4-minute read

No matter what stage you’re at with your business, it’s important to consider your business’ balance sheet movements. By regularly forecasting your business’ balance sheet, you will have a clearer understanding of what you’re likely to own or owe by a certain date.

Keep reading


Developing a risk assessment, management plan for your business 

3-minute read

It is important to consider all possible risks and scenarios that may exist both within your business and your external operating environment.

Keep reading

Get in touch

Request a call back

Have us call you back to discuss your business needs

Leave your details


Talk to someone local

Chat with one of our local business bankers

Find your local business banker


Any advice does not take into account your personal needs, financial circumstances or objectives and you should consider whether it is appropriate for you.

ANZ recommends you read the applicable Terms and Conditions and the ANZ Financial Services Guide (PDF 104kB) before acquiring the product.

This page contains only general information which is subject to change and is not a substitute for commercial judgement or professional advice. This information does not take into account your personal and financial needs, particular objectives and/or circumstances, and you should seek appropriate independent advice (which may include property, legal, financial, taxation and accounting advice) before making any decisions, investing, or acting on it.

Tools, templates, checklists, and calculators (“ANZ Tools”) linked or referred to on this page, are only some of many ways to analyse a business or industry, or to assist your planning and business decision making. You should seek the assistance of your accountant, business or other advisor when either planning for or analysing your business.

To the extent permitted by law, all members of the ANZ group of companies, their employees, officers and contractors (“ANZ“), offer no warranty and disclaim liability or responsibility to any person for any actions, claims, costs, demands, liability, or direct or indirect losses or damage that may result from using or relying on the information set out in the pages or the ANZ Tools, and / or any act, omission or error, by any person in relation to them.  To the extent permitted by law, ANZ makes no warranty and has no liability in respect of your use and reliance. ANZ Tools are also subject in many cases to further specific cautionary wording and disclaimers which you should read.

ANZ tools, templates and checklists are only some of many ways to analyse a business or industry to assist your planning and business decision making. You should seek the assistance of your business advisor or accountant when either planning for or analysing your business' performance. To the extent permitted by law, ANZ makes no warranty and has no liability, in respect of your use of and reliance on these tools.